Introduction to Storm Water Management
Storm water discharges are generated by runoff from land and impervious areas such as paved streets, parking lots, and building rooftops during rainfall and snow events that often contain pollutants in quantities that could adversely affect water quality. Most storm water discharges are considered point sources and require coverage by an NPDES (National Pollution Discharge Elimination System) permit. The primary method to control storm water discharges is through the use of best management practices. On September 14, 1998, the EPA authorized Texas to develop and implement the TPDES Program. Prior to that time, the EPA Region 6 (located in Dallas) served as the permitting authority. Under the terms of this authorization, the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) assumed the role of storm water permitting authority for NPDES activities. In December 1999, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued a final rule on Phase II Storm Water Permitting Regulations. These regulations require all Municipal Separate Storm Sewer Systems (MS4s) to obtain permits by March 10, 2003. Although the TCEQ has not yet issued a final permit for regulated small MS4s, the NPDES Phase II Final Rule describes permit requirements. Under the Small MS4 Storm Water Program, operators of regulated small MS4s are required to design and implement a storm water management program so that it:
- Reduces the discharge of pollutants to the “maximum extent practicable” (MEP)
- Protects water quality; and
- Satisfies the appropriate water quality requirements of the Clean Water ActTCEQ most municipalities in the lower Galveston Bay Watershed.
Once the final permit is issued by the must apply and obtain a permit for their MSdrainage districts, counties, large public complexes such as 4 system. In addition to municipalities, hospitals, prisons, public colleges, and highway systems must also comply with the permitting requirements.
This website is designed to assist municipalities in the lower Galveston Bay Watershed address the Phase II Storm Water Requirements.