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January 15, 1999

AMSA Seeks Alternate Emissions Test Methods in MACT Proposal

AMSA this week urged the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to expand the scope of allowable air pollution testing methods used to determine emissions levels from publicly owned treatment works (POTWs). The Association's recommendations on this, and related air quality issues, marks the beginning of a closing chapter in what has been a six year effort to correctly characterize POTW air emissions within the context of EPA rulemaking.

The Jan. 15 recommendations on testing methods was included in AMSA comments submitted to the EPA Office of Air and Radiation on its Dec. 1, 1998 proposed rulemaking, National Emissions Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants (NESHAP): Publicly Owned Treatment Works. The proposed rulemaking declined imposition of new maximum achievable control technology (MACT) standards on existing POTWs (see Dec. 4 FaxAlert), as wastewater treatment plants had not been proven to be a major source of hazardous air pollutants (HAPs). AMSA supported the basic findings of the proposed rulemaking, but opposed the proposal's extensive reliance on the emissions estimation model WATER8 to determine POTW HAP emissions. In conclusion, AMSA recommended that the rulemaking should allow direct source testing to be the final determination of whether a POTW is a major source.

AMSA's comments will be available in the Regulatory Outreach section of the Member Pipeline on the Association's web site at

Agencies Release Draft MOA on Endangered Species Protection

EPA, the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service and National Marine Fisheries Services released a draft Memorandum of Understanding today describing procedures for enhancing coordination regarding the protection of endangered and threatened species under Section 7 of the Endangered Species Act and the Clean Water Act's water quality standards and national pollutant discharge elimination system programs. A Regulatory Alert summarizing provisions in the draft agreement and soliciting comments will be forwarded to the membership early next week.

AMSA to Discuss CWA Issues with Key Senate Committee Staff

AMSA has been invited to discuss the Association's priority Clean Water Act (CWA) issues with staff of the Senate Environment & Public Works Committee. AMSA will brief committee staff on Association priorities, including, but not limited to, funding, nonpoint source control, and wet weather next Friday, Jan. 22. AMSA also hopes to learn more about the committee's plans for CWA legislative action. Details of the meeting will be reported to the membership at a Feb. 3 Legislative Policy Committee meeting during the Association's 1999 Winter Conference, Running Your Utility as a Business … Entrepreneurial Successes in the Wastewater Industry, to be held Feb. 2-5 in Phoenix, Ariz., and via other AMSA communications tools.

National Biosolids Partnership Active in Coming Weeks

The National Biosolids Partnership (NBP) is holding three meetings during the next few weeks, in part to set objectives for the coming two years. The NBP Workgroup today concluded a two-day meeting in Alexandria, Va., the group's Advisory Committee will meet on Jan. 26-27 in Charlotte, N.C., and the NBP Management Committee will meet Feb. 3 in Phoenix, Ariz., during AMSA's Winter Conference. Actions taken during these meetings will soon be provided to the AMSA membership. On a related front, it's not too early to begin thinking about future funding support for the NBP. The AMSA National Office will soon be calling upon members to contact the House and Senate Appropriations Committees in support of additional funding for the Partnership.