314 CMR 12.08 - Prohibitions and Standards for Discharge to POTWs

(1) General Prohibitions. No person shall discharge or cause to be discharged to a POTW any substances, materials, or wastewaters that can: harm the sewers, wastewater treatment process, or equipment; have an adverse effect on the receiving waters; or otherwise endanger life, limb, public property, or constitute a nuisance. In determining the acceptability of these wastewaters, consideration shall be given to such factors as the quantities of such wastewaters in relation to flows and velocities in the sewers, construction of or materials comprising sewers, nature of the wastewater treatment process, capacity of the wastewater treatment process, degree of treatability of such wastewaters in the wastewater treatment plant, and other pertinent factors. Pollutants introduced into POTW's by a non domestic source shall not pass through the POTW or interfere with the operation or performance of the treatment works. These general prohibitions and the specific prohibitions in 314 CMR 12.08(2) apply to all non domestic sources introducing pollutants into a POTW whether or not the source is subject to other pretreatment standards or any other federal, state, or local pretreatment requirements.
(2) Specific Prohibitions. In addition, the following pollutants shall not be introduced into a POTW:
(a) Pollutants which create a fire or explosion hazard in the POTW;
(b) Pollutants which will cause corrosive structural damage to the POTW, and in no case discharges with pH lower than 5.5, unless the works is specifically designed to accommodate such discharges;
(c) Solid or viscous pollutants, including fats, oils and grease in amounts which will cause obstruction to the flow in the POTW resulting in interference;
(d) Any pollutant, including oxygen demanding pollutants released in a discharge at a flow rate and/or pollutant concentration which will cause interference with the POTW;
(e) Heat in amounts which will inhibit biological activity in the POTW resulting in interference, and in no case heat in such quantities that the temperature at the POTW treatment plant exceeds 40°C (104 F), unless the Department, upon request of the POTW, approves alternate temperature limits.
(f) More than one part per billion (ppb) of mercury. In the event a local mercury limit established under 314 CMR 12.09(1) is applicable to an indirect discharge to a POTW, the most stringent mercury standard shall apply.
(3) Local Limits. Any indirect discharger shall comply with the local sewer use rules and regulations established pursuant to 314 CMR 12.03(5).
(4) Categorical Pretreatment Standards. In addition to the general and specific prohibitions and local limits established in 314 CMR 12.08(1) through (3), industrial users shall comply with applicable categorical pretreatment standards established in 40 CFR Chapter I, Subchapter N.
(a) Deadline for Compliance. Compliance by existing sources with categorical pretreatment standards shall be within three years of the date the standard is effective unless a shorter compliance time is specified in applicable Federal law or regulations. Compliance with categorical pretreatment standards by new sources will be required upon promulgation.
(b) Dilution Prohibited. Except where expressly authorized by an applicable categorical pretreatment standard, no industrial user shall increase the use of process water or, in any other way, attempt to dilute a discharge as a partial or complete substitute for adequate treatment to achieve compliance with a categorical pretreatment standard.
(c) Combined Waste Streams. Where process effluent regulated by a categorical pre-treatment standard is mixed with other wastewaters prior to treatment, fixed alternative discharge limits may be established in accordance with 40 CFR 403.6(e).
(d) POTW Removal Credits. Any POTW receiving wastes from an industrial user subject to categorical pretreatment standards may request revision of discharge limits for a specific pollutant based on the POTW's consistent removal of that pollutant. Any such request shall be made and determined in accordance with 40 CFR 403.7, 403.9 and 403.11.
(e) Fundamentally Different Factors. Where factors relating to an industrial user are fundamentally different from the factors considered by EPA during the development of a categorical pretreatment standard, and the existence of those factors justifies a different discharge limit from that specified in the standard, any person may request a fundamentally different factors variance from the applicable categorical pretreatment standard. Requests for such variances shall be submitted and determined in accordance with 40 CFR 403.13.
(f) Category Determination Requests. A request for a determination as to whether an industrial user is included in a particular industrial category shall be submitted to and processed by the Department in accordance with the provisions of 40 CFR 403.6(a).
(g) Reporting Requirements. Any industrial user subject to categorical pretreatment standards shall prepare and submit the reports required by, and in accordance with 40 CFR 403.12.
(5) State Imposed Standards. Where necessary to enforce the prohibitions in 314 CMR 12.08(1) and (2), the Department may establish on a case by case basis, specific limits on the discharge of wastewater from any user. Such limits may be established as a condition of an administrative order issued to the discharger pursuant to M.G.L. c. 21, § 44.
(6) Where more than one standard established by 314 CMR 12.08(1), (2), (3), (4), or (5) is applicable to an indirect discharge to a POTW, the most stringent standard shall be applied.
(7) Any pretreatment facility which treats hazardous waste must also comply with the requirements of 310 CMR 30.000: Hazardous Waste.
(8) No person owning or maintaining a sewer system shall operate such system in a manner that causes, or allow additional sewer extensions or sewer connections to the system that would result in:
(a) Any surcharging, overflow or bypassing of the system that is not authorized by a discharge permit issued by the Department pursuant to M.G.L. c. 21, § 43;
(b) An increase in a surcharge, overflow or bypass permitted by the Department that results in the elimination of an existing beneficial use of the receiving waters as established in the Massachusetts Water Quality Standards or the creation of a threat to the public health, safety or the environment; or
(c) Any violation of 314 CMR 12.00.
(9) No person owning, maintaining or using a sewer connection shall discharge or allow the discharge of wastewaters through such connection that results in a threat to the public health, safety, or the environment or a violation of 314 CMR 12.00.
(10) No person shall construct or allow the construction of sewer lines and associated appurtenances within a Zone I of a Public Water Supply Well or the Zone A of a Public Surface Water Supply, unless the construction is necessary to eliminate existing sources of pollution or to cross a tributary to the surface water. In cases where construction within Zones I or A are necessary, the construction of the sewer lines and associated appurtenances shall be designed using watertight construction methods.


314 CMR 12.08
Amended, Mass Register Issue 1259, eff. 4/25/2014.

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