EPA Seeks Small Business Participation on Wastewater Discharge Rule for Steam Electric Power Plants

EPA is inviting small businesses to nominate representatives to participate in a Small Business Advocacy Review (SBAR) Panel. This panel will focus on the agency’s development of a proposed rulemaking to strengthen and revise wastewater discharge regulations for steam electric power generating plants. Small business’ participation can help EPA learn, first-hand, about ways to reduce regulatory burdens and help EPA better understand small business’ challenges in complying with wastewater regulations.

The rulemaking will address nuclear-fueled and fossil-fueled (i.e., coal, oil, gas) steam electric power plants. The wastewater discharges to be addressed include flue gas desulfurization wastes from sulfur dioxide air pollution controls, coal ash pond discharges, leachate from ash ponds and landfills containing coal combustion residues, coal gasification wastewater, and other waste streams from fossil-fueled and nuclear-fueled power plants. The main pollutants of concern for these discharges include nitrogen, total dissolved solids, and toxic metals such as mercury, arsenic and selenium. These metals can be lethal to aquatic life and can build up in fish, water fowl and humans causing detrimental effects.

The Regulatory Flexibility Act requires EPA to establish an SBAR Panel for rules that may have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. The panel will include federal representatives from the Small Business Administration, the Office of Management and Budget and EPA. The panel asks a selected group of small entities representatives (SER), i.e., small business representatives, to provide advice and recommendations on behalf of their company, community, or organization to inform the panel about the potential impacts of the proposed rule on small entities.

EPA seeks self-nominations directly from the small entities that may be subject to the rule requirements. Other representatives, such as trade associations that exclusively or at least primarily represent potentially regulated small entities, may also serve as SERs.

Self-nominations for the panel must be submitted to EPA by June 30, 2011.

Submit online at: http://www.epa.gov/sbrefa/steamelectric.htm

More information about the steam electric power plants rules: http://water.epa.gov/scitech/wastetech/guide/steam_index.cfm

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