The Illinois Pollution Control Board adopted a new chloride Water Quality Standard for Chicago Area Waterways becoming effective July 1, 2018. This new standard was developed because area streams are being contaminated with excess chloride primarily from the utilization of road salt during the winter. The impacts of these new chloride standards are significant.
• For dischargers with a National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit (such as wastewater treatment plants), no new or expansion permits will be issued unless action is taken.
• For municipalities with a Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4), general permit violations will occur unless measures are adopted.
There are ways to minimize the expensive costs for this unfunded mandate, while at the same time obtaining an extension to the 2018 compliance deadline. A request for variance complying with Federal and State requirements is imperative. Forming waterbody-specific workgroups among municipalities is also recommended as a cost effective means to achieve compliance. The Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago (MWRDGC) has already formed a workgroup for the communities in the District it serves. Communities outside the MWRDGC service area should form workgroups similar to those currently in existence, such as the DuPage River Salt Creek Workgroup and the Hickory Creek Workgroup.
Robinson Engineering stands ready to help your municipality achieve compliance with the new chloride Water Quality Standard. For more information, please contact:
Steve Zehner, PE, LEED AP, Senior Project Manager, for assistance at (815) 412-2011.