The EPA is proposing a regulation that would establish Effluent Limitation Guidelines and New Source Performance Standards for the Construction and Development Point Source Category. The proposed regulation comes as a result of a ten year battle between the construction industry and NRDC culminating in a court order requiring the EPA to issue a proposed regulation by Dec. 1, 2008 and a final regulation by Dec. 1, 2009. See National Resources Defense Council v. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, 437 F.Supp.2d 1137 (C.D. Ca. 2006).
Under the proposed regulation, permittees would be required to implement specific minimum Best Management Practices. At larger sites in areas of high rainfall energy and significant clay content, permittees would be required to meet a numeric limit on the allowable level of turbidity in stormwater discharges — likely requiring an Active Treatment System. The EPA predicts the rule will cost $1.9 billion per year. Comments on the proposed regulation are due 90 days after publication in the Federal Register, which is imminent.