Wastewater

Industrial Wastewater

By definition, industrial wastewater is a by-product of industrial or commercial activities.  After treatment, industrial wastewater may be reused or released into a sanitary sewer.  NIH facility operations include generation of industrial wastewater, and such operations are regulated primarily under the Clean Water Act.  Within that framework, NIH maintains National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permits for those water treatment plants that discharge to state surface waters.  The permit is designed to protect the quality of the body of water receiving the discharge.

NIH tracks progress towards meeting Water Use Efficiency & Management sustainability goals on a yearly basis  and reports progress in the annual NIH Sustainability Implementation Plan (Click Here).

Click here for the latest Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) Sustainability Plan 

Click here for more info from EPA on industrial wastewater.

Municipal Wastewater

Municipal wastewater includes wastewater from households, small businesses, and storm water runoff.   Municipal wastewater also contains sanitary sewage and is normally treated before environmental release.  The collection and treatment of municipal wastewater is vital to public health and clean water.  NIH facility operations include generation of municipal wastewater, and such operations are regulated primarily under the Clean Water Act.  National Pollution Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permits establish discharge limits and conditions for discharges from municipal wastewater treatment facilities to waters of the U.S.  NIH facilities nationwide coordinate with their local wastewater treatment authorities to maintain environmental compliance. 

The NIH municipal wastewater program also chemically neutralizes the pH of some municipal wastewater prior to discharge into the sewage system and investigates and identifies potential sources if Notice of Violations are issued for NIH wastewater discharges.

NIH tracks progress towards meeting Water Use Efficiency & Management sustainability goals on a yearly basis within the Annual Sustainability Implementation Plan (Click here). 

Click here for the latest Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) Sustainability Plan. 

Click here for more info from EPA on municipal wastewater.

Click here for more information about the no chemicals down the drain policy and the recently developed NIH Sanitary Sewage Discharge Application