Arizona Streamlines Water Quality Control Permit

Arizona Streamlines Water Quality Control Permit

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Thanks to the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality, an expensive, time-consuming permit process just got a little simpler, which is good news for wastewater treatment facilities that process biosolids for fertilizer application. 

“We are always looking for ways to reduce permit processing times while maintaining the same or higher level of environmental protection,” says ADEQ Director Henry Darwin in a press release from the organization. 

The new permit structure allows a general permit for Treatment Works Treating Domestic Sewage. Individual permits previously cost as much as $30,000 and required up to a year to issue. The new general permit reduces the cost to $1,250 to $2,000 and will take less than four months to process. The general permits were developed to restrict discharges at multiple facilities, so the requirements are at least as stringent as those required under the individual permit. 

The general permit is available for those TWTDS that are not under an Arizona Pollutant Discharge Elimination System permit. It includes privately and publicly owned plants as well as TWTDS that are not wastewater treatment plants but do prepare biosolids for land application. If a TWTDS is already under an individual permit, it might be eligible for the new general permit at time of renewal. 

The general permit is a cost-effective and efficient way for the ADEQ to authorize discharges from similar facilities. It will be issued for five-year periods. Monitoring must be conducted, recorded and submitted to the ADEQ in an annual report. 

For application forms and more information, visit


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