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Storm Water Pollution Protection Plans: Drafting and Implementation Guidance

Learn how to identify and handle the more difficult aspects of storm water permitting and SWPPP development.

Many contractors and developers do not fully understand how to comply with the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permits for Storm Water discharges from construction sites. One of the main requirements of the NPDES permit is the development and implementation of a site-specific Storm Water Pollution Prevention Plan (SWPPP). This topic helps the persons responsible for Storm Water compliance to understand how to apply for a Storm Water NPDES permit and how to develop and maintain the necessary SWPPP. This material will also help you to identify best management practices (BMPs) for your site and how to be aware of possible special conditions at your site. This content will discuss site inspection reports, BMP failures, and how to handle regulatory inspections at your site.

Runtime: 92 minutes

Master the fundamentals of storm water compliance and identify best management practices you can apply to your unique construction environment — without leaving your home, office or job site.

Construction contractors and real estate developers must comply with a litany of regulations during every phase of their building projects. All states have agencies in place that oversee the implementation of storm water pollution protection plans that require construction entities to obtain the appropriate permits.

Companies that are unfamiliar with the permitting guidelines are at risk of compliance violations that could result in significant penalties or even derail the project. Lorman’s training program can help you develop an effective storm water pollution protection plan that will simplify the permit acquisition process and help you stay compliant.

What Are the Dangers Associated With Storm Water Runoff?

Precipitation such as rain and snow soaks into the ground, which typically poses no environmental or health hazards. In fact, we need a sufficient amount of storm water to nourish the soil and replenish our rivers, lakes and streams. However, when storm water runoff flows over impervious surfaces such as paved roadways, rooftops and parking lots, it will accumulate debris, sediment and chemicals that can cause harm to the ecosystems and pose a threat to animal and plant life.

According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the negative impacts of unmanaged storm water runoff include:

- Increase in sedimentation (deposition of material such as silt, gravel, sand and chemical precipitates)

- Increase in flooding

- Harmful loss or modification of animal/wildlife habitats

- Harm to inland and coastal waters

- Decrease in aquatic biological diversity

- Harmful changes in hydrology and water quality

The EPA has developed a set of Best Management Practices (BMPs) intended to assist construction companies and other stakeholders in the building process to serve as storm water runoff controls. The EPA lists the following benefits that will result from effective BMP implementation:

- Improved quality of water of receiving water bodies (lakes, rivers, streams, etc.)

- Protection of wetlands and aquatic ecosystems

- Enhanced flood control

- Conservation of water resources

- Safeguarding public health and safety

What Is NPDES Compliance and How Does It Impact the Construction Site Management Process?

The Clean Water Act of 1972, which is administered by the EPA, establishes the structure that regulates the discharge of pollutants into U.S. waterways. The National Pollution Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) is a permit program created by the implementation of the CWA to regulate the point sources that discharge pollutants. Under the provisions of the NPDES, states can receive EPA authorization to perform the various permitting, administrative and performance functions of the program.

What Does an NPDES Permit Cover?

Completing the required permitting steps is critical for ensuring NPDES compliance. The permit will list the limits on type and amount of pollutants your company can legally discharge and stipulate the various reporting, monitoring and other NPDES compliance guidelines. In essence, your permit translates the general stipulations of the CWA into specific state-administered provisions regarding the discharge of job site pollutants. The discharge of pollutants into waterways are covered as long as it falls within the parameters outlined in the permit.

Who Needs an NPDES Permit?

In general, any point source that discharges pollutants into U.S. waters must obtain a permit to meet the NPDES compliance requirements. The CWA defines a point source as “any discernible, confined and discrete conveyance, such as a pipe, ditch, channel, tunnel, conduit, discrete fissure or container.”

A point source can also be a vessel that discharges pollutants into a water body. However, you do not need a permit if your construction site will only filter pollutants into a municipal sanitary sewer system. While states administer the permitting process, local government entities may also have specific permitting requirements.

How Can I Apply for an NPDES Permit?

Each state has its own NPDES application procedure. States may have full or partial authority to grant permits. However, not every state has EPA approval to issue permits. In these states (currently New Mexico, Idaho, Massachusetts and New Hampshire), the EPA regional office carries the permitting authority. The CWA limits the length of NPDES permits to five years, although it is possible to renew an expiring permit when following the specified procedures.

What Is an SWPPP?

A storm water pollution protection plan is a fundamental requirement of the NPDES permitting process. A well-crafted SWPPP will list all likely potential pollution sources that could impact the quality of storm water discharges from the construction site. The SWPPP will also include a description of the measures the entity intends to implement to minimize the discharge of pollutants. Finally, the SWPPP will help to ensure NPDES compliance with the terms and conditions of the permit.

What Is the Relationship Between the SWPPP and BMPs?

Another key SWPPP component is the delineation of Best Management Practices, which are the measures implemented to prevent or reduce the discharge of pollutants at the source point. BMPs typically consist of:

- Operating procedures and protocols

- List of prohibited practices

- Specific storm water runoff treatment requirements

- List of practices for controlling industrial storm water runoff, leaks, spillage, etc.

- Schedule for the implementation of these activities

- All other applicable management practices

What Are the Potential Penalties for NPDES Noncompliance?

The failure to maintain NPDES compliance could constitute a violation of the Clean Water Act. This may result in enforcement actions that can include permit termination or revocation, the denial of a permit renewal application, or in some situations, the levying of fines and possible criminal prosecution.

What Will You Learn From Our Training Program?

Our comprehensive 92-minute program will provide the essential information you need so that you and your company can successfully navigate the complex NPDES permitting process in your state. You will also gain an understanding of what it takes to achieve and maintain NPDES compliance, including the development and implementation of a practical storm water pollution protection plan that targets your construction company’s unique compliance challenges.

Specific agenda items include the fundamentals of storm water — what it is, the various pollutants that storm water can carry and the environmental benefits attained via storm water control measures. Our program will also cover the regulatory basics such as the Clean Water Act, the NPDES permitting process and the elements of a strong SWPPP. Finally, you will learn about the pitfalls that could result in noncompliance — such as the failure to implement effective BMPs and not knowing what to do when something goes wrong — and how to avoid them.

The successful completion of our training program will better position you and your company to manage and control storm water runoff, fulfill the stringent NPDES permitting requirements and mitigate your risk of noncompliance and associated penalties.

Convenient Training Designed for Today’s Busy Professionals

If you’re like most busy construction professionals, the rigors of managing a job site leave little time for training. Lorman Education makes it easy to fit learning into your hectic schedule. We offer our storm water training program in an on-demand webinar format you can download and view on a 24/7 basis.

You can watch it in the office, at home or on those rare occasions when you have some downtime at the job site. All you need is a computer with Internet access and you can get the training you need to meet your education and compliance objectives. This format may also help you qualify to receive continuing education credits in your state. Please refer to the Credits tab for additional information.

Understanding that our students have different learning styles and technology options, we complement our on-demand webinar option with other popular formats. Our audio and reference manual is available on a USB drive you can plug into your desktop or laptop computer. You can also purchase the program as an MP3 recording you can download to your smartphone or tablet so you can listen to it while you’re on the go.

The Lorman All-Access Pass: A Cost-Effective Solution for All Your Training Needs

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With the Lorman All-Access Pass, you don’t have to worry about exceeding a training budget or bypassing a valuable course because it’s too expensive. It also simplifies the program registration process — all it takes is one click of your mouse, and you’re ready to get started with the next program. Most of all, the All-Access Pass provides an affordable way to invest in yourself and your future success.

Lorman: Providing Superior Continuing Education Solutions for More Than 30 Years

Professionals in industries such as construction, medical, engineering, public works, banking and many others continue to make Lorman Education their one-stop source for their training and continuing education needs.

Over the course of more than three decades, we’ve helped over 1.4 million dedicated professionals just like you receive top-quality training that helps them achieve their specific career objectives. We make it easy, convenient and affordable to enhance your business skills, stay compliant with your industry’s requirements and gain a competitive edge in today’s constantly-changing job market.

We also take pride in the quality and commitment exhibited by our faculty members. Our team consists of well-qualified professionals who bring an abundance of relevant industry experience and a solid educational background to the instructional process. Our stringent selection guidelines ensure we only hire the “best of the best” — we don’t just take anyone off the street. We carefully vet every potential instructor to verify they meet our high standards — and that they will provide the unparalleled educational experience our students expect and deserve.

Why Not Get Started on Your NPDES Compliance Training Right Now?

You have immediate access to all our available storm water training formats — why wait to embark on a high-quality learning experience that will make a difference in your career? You can purchase the program individually or sign up for your money-saving All-Access Pass and get started on fulfilling your training objectives for the next year. And feel free to contact us if you have questions about any of our training programs.

At Lorman Education, we offer more opportunities to consume information and get the training you need to meet your learning and compliance objectives.

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Why Lorman?

Over 33 years and 1.4 million customers worth of experience providing continuing education. Our passion is providing you world-class training to help you succeed in business and as a professional.


Storm Water Basics

  • What Is Storm Water and Why Do We Care About It?
  • What Pollutants Are Associated With Storm Water?
  • What Can Storm Water Control Accomplish?

Regulatory Basics

  • What Is the Clean Water Act?
  • Who Needs a Storm Water Permit?
  • What Should Be in the SWPP?
  • What Are the Risks of Noncompliance?

Five Traps to Avoid

  • Understand Who Is Responsible for Compliance
  • Choosing Best Management Practices (BMPs)
  • Understanding Special Conditions
  • Updating Your Storm Water Prevention Pollution Plan
  • What Do You Do When Something Goes Wrong?
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Why Lorman?

Over 33 years and 1.4 million customers worth of experience providing continuing education. Our passion is providing you world-class training to help you succeed in business and as a professional.


OnDemand Course

This course was last revised on October 26, 2017.

Call 1-866-352-9540 for further credit information.

No Credit Available

This program does NOT qualify, nor meet the National Standard for NASBA accreditation.

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Why Lorman?

Over 33 years and 1.4 million customers worth of experience providing continuing education. Our passion is providing you world-class training to help you succeed in business and as a professional.


Scott Harding, CPSS/SC

Scott Harding, CPSS/SC

SCI Engineering, Inc.

  • Executive vice president and partner of SCI Engineering Inc.
  • He has been involved in the design and implementation of Storm Water projects in the region for over two decades
  • Certified Professional Soil Scientist National (ARCPACS)
  • Expert Witness in multiple Permitting and Compliance Cases
  • Provided congressional testimony on Clean Water Act including land disturbance permitting
Mary Weatherford

Mary Weatherford

SCI Engineering, Inc.

  • Staff Engineer at SCI Engineering Inc.
  • She has experience in stream restoration, Storm Water Management, sediment and erosion control and design
  • She is responsible for oversight of Storm Water services including coordination of municipal, construction, industrial and NPDES compliance consulting services
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Why Lorman?

Over 33 years and 1.4 million customers worth of experience providing continuing education. Our passion is providing you world-class training to help you succeed in business and as a professional.

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Product ID: 400291
Published 2017
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