Environmental Compliance

Water Conservation

Water Conservation Notices are usually issued during the summer months when demand for water is high. They are issued to conserve water so the system can maintain adequate pressure and backup water supply for local fire service providers.

All commercial and residential system users are required to conserve water by limiting their water use as instructed in the conservation notice. Outdoor use is prohibited as instructed by the conservation notice. These restrictions prohibit such activities as watering lawns, gardens, filling swimming pools and washing cars, decks, or siding during the restricted period.

The Clean Water Act 

The Clean Water Act limits the levels of pollutants that non-domestic users are allowed to discharge to the sewer system. It requires municipalities to implement Industrial Pretreatment Programs (IPP) in order to protect their wastewater treatment plants biological treatment systems, to avoid concentrations of various pollutants that could end up in our biosolids, which is recycled as fertilizer, and so that various pollutants are not discharged into the receiving waters. 

Under the Clean Water Act, Genesee County Drain Commissioner Division of Water and Waste Services (GCDCWWS) is legally obligated to implement an IPP to protect the treatment plant and to ensure proper treatment of wastewater. 

POTWs (Publicly Owned Treatment Works) commonly referred to as Wastewater Treatment Plants store, treat, recycle, and reclaim municipal sewage and liquid industrial wastes. They are required to have a National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit to discharge treated water from its system’s into creeks, rivers, or other waters. This permit regulates the quality and quantity of water the POTW may discharge from its system.

Pretreatment

Pretreatment is the reduction, the elimination, or the alteration of pollutants in wastewater to a less harmful state prior to discharge of the wastewater to a sanitary sewer system. 

The term "pretreatment" refers to the requirement that non-domestic sources control their wastewater before discharge to meet all applicable pretreatment standards and requirements.

Pollutants

Certain wastewater discharges are prohibited for all non-domestic facilities that discharge to POTWs because of the potential hazards these discharges create. Specific prohibited discharges include: 

  • pollutants that would create a fire or explosion 
  • pollutants that would cause corrosive structural damage to a POTW 
  • solid or viscous pollutants that would obstruct flow in a POTW 
  • pollutants that result in toxic gases, vapors, and fumes 
  • ignitable wastes 
  • oil and grease

Pollutants can be sampled over a 24-hour period from businesses that are discharging to the sewer. The samples are taken to the laboratory at the Wastewater Treatment Plant and analyzed for pollutants released by the business. Once the samples have been tested the results are evaluated and studied by the Environmental Compliance Supervisor. The data is used to generate surcharges and enforcement action if necessary.
 

Ebola Info

Genesee County Drain Commissioner – Division of Water and Waste Services (GCDC-WWS) is sending this letter in response to questions we have been asked regarding the discharge/disposal of human wastes from the treatment of a patient known or suspected of having Ebola.

Click here to view the letter (Letter contains links with further information)