In Florida, all wastewater that is not defined as domestic wastewater is considered industrial wastewater. Since Florida is among our nation’s most populous and fastest growing states, industrial wastewater permitting is increasingly important for protection of our state’s most precious natural resource — water.
Sources of industrial wastewater include manufacturing, commercial businesses, mining, agricultural production and processing, and wastewater from cleanup of petroleum- and chemical-contaminated sites. Industrial wastewater discharged under NPDES permits may be subject to federal Effluent Limitations Guidelines (ELG). In addition, all industrial wastewater discharges in Florida must provide reasonable assurance of meeting Florida’s Water Quality Standards for surface water or ground water to receive a discharge permit.
The Department of Environmental Protection's Industrial Wastewater Program issues permits to facilities and activities that discharge to surface waters and ground waters of the state. Industrial wastewater that discharges to domestic wastewater treatment facilities, however, is regulated under the Industrial Pretreatment component of the department’s Domestic Wastewater Program.
The department is authorized by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to issue permits for discharge to surface waters under the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES). Permits for discharge to ground waters are issued by the department under state statutes and rules. Industrial wastewater permits are issued by the district offices, with two exceptions. NPDES permits for steam electric power plants are issued by the Industrial Wastewater Program in the Tallahassee office. Industrial wastewater permitting for the phosphate industry is handled by the Phosphogypsum Management Program located in Tampa.
The Florida Department of Environmental Protection is the state’s lead agency for environmental management and stewardship – protecting our air, water and land. The vision of the Florida Department of Environmental Protection is to create strong community partnerships, safeguard Florida’s natural resources and enhance its ecosystems.