P.O. Box 33a
1000 Wilkes-Barre Street
Wilkes-Barre, PA 18703
570.820.9872 (office)
570.825.5039 (fax)

Industrial Pretreatment

The National Industrial Pretreatment Program is a cooperative effort of federal, state, and local regulatory environmental agencies established to protect water quality. The program is designed to reduce the level of pollutants discharged by industry and other non-domestic wastewater sources into Publically Owned Treatment Works (POTWs), thereby reducing the amount of pollutants released into the environment. The Industrial Pretreatment Program is a federally mandated program and is authorized by the Clean Water Act (CWA). The WVSA operates an approved Industrial Pretreatment Program with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) serving as the approval authority.

The term “pretreatment” refers to the need to treat wastewater before it is discharged into the sewage collection system. Nondomestic sources discharging wastewater to POTWs may be required to control their discharges by using available wastewater treatment technologies in order to meet limits established by EPA, the state or local authority. Chemical precipitation, filtration, pH adjustment, and sedimentation/flotation are several types of pretreatment used by industries serviced by the Wyoming Valley Sanitary Authority (WVSA).

The program has four basic goals:

Industrial Users (IUs) are categorized by the type and volume of wastewater discharged. Class I industries are considered to be Significant Industrial Users (SIUs) and require a permit issued by the WVSA. SIUs are also required to perform self-monitoring of their wastewater and submit self-monitoring reports (SMRs) to WVSA. In addition, the Authority’s pretreatment staff conducts compliance monitoring and industrial inspections.

Two types of discharge limits are applied to IUs. The first type is Categorical Pretreatment Standards. These limits are promulgated by the EPA in accordance with Section 307 of the Clean Water Act. They are technology-based and are applicable to specific process wastewaters from particular industrial categories. These industries are collectively called Categorical Industrial Users (CIUs). The second type of discharge limits applied to IUs is Local Limits. Where Categorical Pretreatment Standards are derived from available treatment technologies, Local Limits are designed to address the specific needs and capabilities of an individual POTW.

Local Limits protect the wastewater treatment processes at a POTW, its receiving waters, and its sludge disposal practices. A listing of Local Limits for WVSA can be found at the link below.

A grease trap inspection program is also overseen by the Industrial Pretreatment Department at WVSA. This program is designed to reduce the occurrence of sewer line blockages/overflows caused by the accumulation of fats, oils, and grease (FOG). Facilities with potential to discharge FOG are required to install and maintain a grease trap/interceptor. On-site inspections are conducted by WVSA to determine compliance.

The pretreatment program at WVSA also runs a hauled domestic waste program where wastewater hauling companies are permitted by the WVSA to dispose of septage and sludge from wastewater treatment plants treating domestic sewage. Currently all hauled waste is accepted only at the WVSA Wastewater Treatment Plant. A fee is charged for this service. Samples are collected from these loads and analyzed. This data is used to determine waste compatibility and when developing local limits. This project was initiated at the request of the state Department of Environmental Protection in 1992. Information about WVSA’s hauled waste program can be found in the links below.

Industrial Pretreatment Forms

Hauled Waste Permit Application (.pdf)

Hauled Waste Rules and Rates Information (.pdf)

Industrial Wastewater Discharge Permit Application (.pdf)

Local Limits Table (.pdf)

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