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Beyond ERP

Organization(s) Massachusetts Dept. of Environmental Protection
Project Description In these times of limited resources, the Massachusetts "Beyond ERP" effort is designed to assess regulated groups before using resources to implement compliance and enforcement measures. The assessment also measures whether DEP's compliance and enforcement efforts (i.e., permits, inspections, and ERP certifications) are yielding environmental benefits and pollution prevention. The assessment consists of a personal visit with a standard questionnaire and a "walk through" to determine environmental awareness and compliance. MA DEP launched its "Beyond ERP" (Environmental Results Program) initiative with an assessment of several targeted groups, including industrial wastewater dischargers in un-sewered areas.

MA DEP chose industrial wastewater dischargers as a target group because of its size, potential risk to the environment, and the Department's need for recent environmental data. There are several thousand facilities that have potential discharges in un-sewered areas. An evaluation of Standard Industrial Classification (SIC) codes revealed six facility types: vehicle-related, manufacturing, contractors, medical/laboratories, general service, and agriculture. These facilities may be discharging industrial wastewater through floor drains and stormwater drains into septic systems or surface water without a permit, or have a variety of other water-related issues associated with their operations.

In the summer of 2005, staff from the MA DEP Boston Office and four DEP regions visited a randomly selected and statistically significant representative sample of over 200 facilities in non-sewered areas. Using a standard questionnaire the "inspectors" interviewed the facility manager and performed a "walk through," focusing on where industrial and sanitary wastewater was being discharged. An informational letter was left with the facility owner containing compliance assistance information including a referral to the MA Office of Technical Assistance.

The emphasis of the project is assessment first, with a few follow-up compliance inspections and enforcement for egregious violations. A significant outcome will be to determine the nature and extent of industrial wastewater discharges in environmentally sensitive areas of Massachusetts. The results of the assessment will determine program needs for regulatory changes, compliance assistance, and enforcement for industrial wastewater discharges in the future

Project Contact
Name Helen Waldorf
Phone 617-292-5819
Project Keywords
Activity Keywords Research and development
Newsletter Northeast States Pollution Prevention News - Vol. 15 No. 2, Fall 2005 [PDF]


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