Government Environmental Requirements in Construction Projects
There are several governmental environmental requirements for your construction project. Each year more environmental requirements are added to this list because raising concerns for the environmental protection of our natural resources and stringent codes are enforced. Below is a list of some requirements, that depending on your activity and project, you must be able to satisfy.
Storm Water Runoff
If your project is disturbing one or more acres of land, you may have to get Clean Water Act (CWA)permit. This permit will allow you to be able the discharge of storm water runoff from your construction site. This permit is granted by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) program. Sometimes the permit is granted instead by your state NPDES permitting authority. In order to get the permit going you must get some paperwork filled, for example:
· Filling a Notice of Intent (NOI).
· Preparing and implementing a Storm Water Pollution Prevention Plan (SWPPP).
· Submitting a Notice of Termination (NOT).
Additional information must be accessed at www.epa.gov/npdes/stormwater.
Dregged and Fill Material, Including Wetlands
Section 4040 of the CWA, is a permit granted by either U.S. Army Corps of Engineers or the state where the work is performed. This permit allows you to discharge dredged material (dragged or excavated) or fill material to waters of the United States. EPA establishes criteria to grant the permit, or in some cases this permit can be denied depending on the conditions and work area. Some construction activities with minimal impact to the environment can get the coverage under a general 404 permit. For more information, including information on wetlands, go to www.epa.gov/owow/wetlands/regs/index.html.
Solid and Hazardous Wastes
Hazardous and solid waste disposal and their allowed concentrations are listed in the regulations under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act. This regulation specifies the managing and disposal procedure for hazardous waste.
· Lead Based Paint- Lead base paint is considered household waste by EPA and can be disposed following state and federal regulations. Although personnel working in lead abatement should be certified to do the work under 40 CFR Part 745.
Construction and Demolition- Most construction and demolition material will end up in solid waste landfills devoted exclusively to construction and demolition materials. Is the landfill responsibility, to comply with EPA’s regulations. However, they do prohibit, hazardous wastes from being placed in a construction and demolition landfill.
· Gas/ Diesel tank- This material is regulated by the Oil Pollution Act, which regulates the handling, disposal and storage of this material.
The Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know-Act and the Oil Pollution Act are the regulatory standards for reporting spills in your project. Each of them stipulates that when quantities exceed their specified amount, it must be reported to the corresponding authorities. Furthermore, the MSDS of all the hazardous chemicals must be located within the construction office.
PCB WastePolychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) waste must meet requirements specified under the Toxics Substances Control Act (TSCA).
Clean Air Act regulates dust control in construction sites. State Implementation Plans, commonly regulate the quality of air and will enforce the CAA. For related Diesel equipment, there are other regulations under the Voluntary Diesel Retrofit Program established by EPA, where they try to enforce the regulation of emissions and air pollution caused by this type of equipment.
The combined amount of Regulated Asbestos-Containing Material (RACM) on a facility is at least 260 linear feet of pipe, 160 square feet of other facility components, or 35 cubic feet of material components when there is no possibility of a measurement in the area. If greater quantities are detected then it has to be removed. EPA has to be notified if the level of asbestos exceeds the minimum amount established by regulatory agencies. For more information on the asbestos regulations, go to asbestos information.
If asbestos is removed and allowed going into the air then it becomes a hazardous substance, and then you may be subject to requirements under CERCLA. For more information, contact EPA’s Office of Solid Waste Call Center at 800-424-9346.
Remember these are some guidelines and general information. For a more specific information check with your project’s requirements, the state office for environmental resources, EPA, and other regulatory offices.