Issues

Water Quality Standards

MESERB works to ensure that water quality standards that impact municipal wastewater facilities are based on open and transparent science, independently reviewed and result in meaningful benefits to water quality. Water quality standards issues that MESERB is currently focused on include:

  • Wild Rice Sulfate
  • Chloride (and other salty parameters)
  • Total Nitrogen Standard
  • Mercury
  • River and Lake Euthrophication Standards
  • Antidegradation

For information on current, future, and completed rulemaking projects, please visit the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency’s Public Rulemaking Docket.

Innovative Approaches to NPDES Permitting

MESERB is always looking for innovate implementation methods to address water quality regulations to achieve maximum environmental benefit while responsibly utilizing state and local resources. Such activities include:

  • Water Quality Trading – Working to research and develop a more flexible trading framework including point to non-point trading.
  • Integrative Planning – Working to develop a framework that allows municipalities to meet regulatory obligations while optimizing infrastructure investments through prioritization and sequencing of work.
  • Plant Optimization – Working with members to identify, develop and share plant optimization techniques and technologies to maximize efficiency in existing infrastructure.

Public Notices and Requests for Comments

  • Proposed Information Collection Request – NPDES Program (Renewal): [Excerpt]: The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is planning to submit the ‘‘Information Collection Request (ICR) Supporting Statement for The National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System Program (Renewal).” This consolidated Information Collection Request (ICR) renews the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) Program ICR. It calculates the information collection burden and costs associated with the NPDES program, identifies the types of activities regulated under the NPDES program, describes the roles and responsibilities of state governments and the Agency, and presents the program areas that address the various types of regulated activities. This ICR renewal (Office of Management and Budget (OMB) control no. 2040–0004, EPA ICR no. 0229.24, expiration date 03/31/2022) consolidates the information collection burden and costs associated with activities previously reported in 18 of the NPDES program or NPDES-related ICRs. This renewal documents the addition of the burden and costs for the four existing NPDES ICRs listed below. Once this renewal ICR is approved, the following ICRs will be discontinued (each originally would have been effective for three years).
    • Public Notification Requirements for Combined Sewer Overflows (CSOs) in the Great Lakes Basin (OMB control no. 2040–0293, EPA ICR 2562.03, expiration date 04/30/2024)
    • Effluent Limitation Guidelines and Standards for the Dental Category (OMB control no. 2040–0287, EPA ICR no. 2514.03, expiration 03/31/ 2024)
    • 2020 National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System Multi-Sector General Permit (MSGP) for Industrial Stormwater Discharges (OMB control no. 2040–0300, EPA ICR no. 2612.02, expiration 03/31/2024)
    • NPDES Electronic Reporting Rule— Phase 2 Extension (OMB Control No.: 2020–0037, EPA ICR No. 2617.02, expiration 12/31/2023)

All comments must be submitted by Sept. 27, 2021.