The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) issued a new permit to improve water quality and protect public health in New York City. The new State Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (SPDES) permit provides stricter controls on discharges from the city’s municipal separate storm sewer system (MS4). The permit includes conditions to better manage urban sources of stormwater runoff and help protect and improve water quality as part of a comprehensive, integrated planning approach.
The new permit, which also requires New York City to develop a Stormwater Management Program (SWMP) Plan, was developed by DEC in collaboration with the New York City Department of Environmental Protection. The permit is reflective of the substantive comments that DEC received from the public, according to a press release.
The permit is anticipated to generate a range of benefits including public education and outreach to eliminate pollutants at their sources; an inspection and enforcement program to prevent pollutants from industrial facilities and construction sites; and improved programs to detect and eliminate illicit discharges and reduce the amount of garbage, litter, and other floatables. Additionally, stormwater controls will reduce pollutants from post-construction stormwater runoff and eliminate or reduce pollutants from New York City’s municipal operations and facilities.