APRIL   2012

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Tap Water into Glass

What's the difference between us and most other countries in the world....you guessed it, CLEAN WATER, or I should say the CLEAN WATER ACT! Today, the world is struggling more than ever for clean water.  People die everyday from consuming water contaminated with human feces and other contaminants.  As Americans, we cannot afford to take our eyes off of compliance with the Clean Water Act for our own well being!  Do you have to drink water like this? It takes a position of strength to help others in need.  That's why NPDES compliance is so vital to our economy and individual health in the United States. 

Today, we have approximately 310 million people in the United States, 7  Billion world wide, and roughly 1.2 billion people outside of our borders who are forced to drink filthy water so contaminated that they will suffer an early miserable death.  According to the World Health Organization, almost 2 million children die each year for want of a glass of clean water. 


THINK AND BE GRATEFUL......Almost two in every three people who need safe drinking water survive on less than $2 a day, and one in three on less than $1 a day.  If you live in the United States, you are not one of those people, thanks to our economy and the environmental laws that protect it, like the Clean Water Act! 

The country of Haiti is virtually bankrupt of topsoil, and their economy and water quality proves it.  In America, thanks to rules and regulations like those that come from the Soil Erosion Act that passed in the early 30's, Georgia Erosion and Sedimentation Act of 1975, and the Clean Water Act of 1972, we are on the road to recovery from the damage we caused from poor land management practices.  It takes a long time to bring back a top soil that took thousands of years to develop.  Yet we are in much better shape than just a few years ago. 


We must first understand, before we criticize and attempt to dismantle regulations that protect our water, air, land and wildlife resources!  Thoughtful and intelligent environmental protection based on "good science" is the key.  NPDES and Erosion Training, be grateful for it!


HURRY It's Not To Late!

Georgia Stormwater Management Workshop

April 4 - 6, 2012 - Room 137 - The Tate Student Center, University of Georgia, Athens, Georgia
UGA Stormwater Course
A number of Georgia municipalities and county governments now require stormwater management plans to meet the standards spelled out in the Georgia Stormwater Management Manual(The Blue Book) and/or the Coastal Supplement. This course is intended for practicing engineers and landscape architects licensed in Georgia as well as related professionals such as architects, planners, and erosion and sediment control design professionals
This promises to be a great workshop!  If you decide to attend, give us a call and tell us how it went!


This conference will be presented on May 8 by the GAWP Stormwater Committee and the GAWRA. 
Join us for an exciting, educational event featuring presentations on policy, comprehensive watershed planning, and stormwater management as well as design and construction issues.   
For registration information and other details, click here



The Westin Atlanta Perimeter North / Atlanta, Georgia

April 20, 2012 / 8:30 AM - 4:00 PM
Seminar is presented by SESWA, and will present a comprehensive overview of two of the primary methods to improve surface water quality and meet regulatory requirements in your jurisdiction - stormwater Best Management Practices and Low Impact Development. Fees include all course materials, morning coffee, lunch and an afternoon snack.
For registration information and other details, click here.
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Some of the country's best erosion and sediment control workshops, click here.
American's Working Together for WATER QUALITY!"
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Earlier this month the Georgia Soil and Water Conservation Commission and the Environmental Protection Division gaswcc logo and watershed mapissued a memo to clarify Checklist Requirements for Projects Less Than One Acre Not Part of a Common Development but Within 200 Feet of Perennial State Waters (O.C.G.A. 12-7-17(8)).

If the subject project is less than one acre and not part of a common development or sale, but within 200 feet of any perennial State waters, a local Land Disturbing Activity (LDA) permit and an Erosion, Sedimentation and Pollution Control (ES&PC) Plan are required (O.C.G.A. 12-7-17(8)). Applications for a local Land Disturbing Activity permit and copies of the ES&PC Plan must be submitted to the Local Issuing Authority for review and approval or disapproval.


O.C.G.A. 12-7-17(8) is not applicable if the GA EPD Logoland disturbing activity is the construction of a single-family residence that is not part of a common development or sale and is less than one acre - a local Land Disturbing Activity permit is not required (O.C.G.A. 12-7-17(4)); however, the minimum requirements of O.C.G.A. 12-7-6 are applicable (e.g., ES&PC Plan and State-mandated buffers) and should be enforced by the Local Issuing Authorities.


grey cardES&PC Plans must be prepared in accordance with the appropriate ES&PC checklist released by the Georgia Soil and Water Conservation Commission (GSWCC) each calendar year; however, not all items on the checklist are required for the subject projects (Attachments).


For "stand alone" construction projects that are less than one acre and not part of a common development or sale, but within 200 feet of any perennial State waters, the following checklist requirements are not applicable: 10, 14, 18,19, 20, 23, 27, 28, 31, 33, 34, 36, 37 and 40 - 48.


Design of Plans - MeetingFor "infrastructure" construction projects that are less than one acre and not part of a common development or sale, but within 200 feet of any perennial State waters, the following checklist requirements are not applicable: 13, 17, 18, 25, 26, 29, 31, 32, 34, 35 and 38 - 46.


Coverage under the State General Permits for Stormwater Discharges Associated with Construction Activities is not required for projects less than one acre and not part of a common development.


Unanimous Supreme Court Tells EPA

its Orders Can Be Appealed


Sacketts v. epa
We Won...WE WON!

In a decision handed down on March 20, Justice Antonin Scalia found it easy to give Mike and Chantelle Sackett their day in court. Writing for a unanimous Supreme Court in the case of Sackett v. EPA, Justice Scalia said that the EPA could not find that the Sackets had illegally filled wetlands on their property, order them to remove the fill, and then threaten them with penalties without allowing them to appeal the order. The outcome in the case had been widely predicted based on the sympathetic plight of the plaintiffs, which had moved the case into the mainstream media and the stump speeches of presidential candidates. When due process allows a driver to appeal a parking ticket before paying it, providing the Sacketts the opportunity to seek judicial review of EPA's administrative enforcement order without having to wait for EPA to first sue them was not much of a stretch.


However, as with most environmental cases decided by the Supreme Court, the impact of the Sackett decision is not that simple and sure to be hotly debated. As with the high court's 2006 plurality decision in Rapanos v. United States regarding the reach of CWA jurisdiction and the Court's 2009 decision in Burlington Northern & Santa Fe Railway Co. v. United States on divisibility under CERCLA, the devil is in the details and there is much left to be determined as the decision plays itself out.


Chattahoochee River Designated America's First National Water Trail

Chattahoochee River w Blue HeronThis month, Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar unveiled the National Water Trails System, a new network that will increase access to water-based outdoor recreation, encourage community stewardship of local waterways, and promote tourism that fuels local economies across America.


The Chattahoochee River Water Trail in Atlanta will be the first river to be designated as a National Water Trail under the new system. The water trail travels through 48 miles of river within the Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area. The park serves 3.2 million visitors annually, most from the local Atlanta metro-region. In addition to providing over 65% of the public greenspace in this urban region, the river provides most of Atlanta's drinking water. The park and new water trail contain 18 developed public access points and connects with other local city and county parks. The river is heavily used by anglers, tubers, kayakers, canoers, and rafters.


 NPDES MS4 Training
VISIT WWW.MS4TRAINING.COM for more information!
As MS4 Training providers for cities and counties, we felt it was good to share an annual reporting software solution to your budget challenges.  The MS4 Web program is a customizable, state of the art software that can make annual reporting less expensive, much simpler, and a lot easier


CLICK HERE  to sign up for a FREE Webinar


CLICK HERE to watch a BRIEF online video.


You may wonder what is a Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4)? A MS4 is a conveyance or a system of conveyances that is owned by a state, city, town, village, military base, or other public entity (Universities) that discharges stormwater to waters of the United States.  A MS4 collects or conveys stormwater (including storm drains, pipes, ditches, etc.).   It's not a combined sewer system and is not part of a publically owned treatment works (POTW).  MS4s must report annually to the State administering the MS4 permit or the US EPA, and that's where we can help!  Call us at 678-469-5120 and ask for Luke.
Big StripersGet involved and learn the truth behind environmental protection!  We're able to catch fish and hunt in this country because of our investment into our environment!  It's important that we are active and we sacrifice a little to give our future generations a great place to live, fish, hunt and enjoy.  It's scary out there right now.....politics are crazy and we are growing like a weed!  It's important that industries are allowed to be profitable, but just as important that they're held accountable for their water quality impacts.  Here, in the southeast US, those impacts killed 38,000 fish on the Ogeechee River just last year, and caused the Chattahoochee River to be bankrupt of fish below Atlanta in the 60s!  If it weren't for our environmental protection guidelines and regulations, many of our water ways would be in horrible shape!  
ALSO, let's Never Forget that our soldiers need our support!  Please write a letter or send a small gift to a soldier, thanking them for their willingness to serve our country.  Gratitude when expressed to those that deserve our thanks will make us stronger as a nation!  Your small expression of gratitude will mean more to a soldier than you will know, and will serve you well too!  
This Newsletter is intended to be a useful tool for all individuals involved land disturbing activities and stormwater management.  There is a lot happening now with water regulations that affects a diverse community of public and private entities!  If you have areas of interest that you would like included in this newsletter, please contact us at 678-469-5120. 


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T. Luke Owen, PG
Principal Trainer, NPDES Stormwater Training Institute