WSR 15-09-048
[Filed April 10, 2015, 10:25 a.m.]
Notice of a Draft New 2015 General Permit for Biosolids Management
Notice is hereby given that the Washington state department of ecology (ecology) is seeking comments on a draft new general permit for biosolids management (general permit) to replace the expiring general permit.
Ecology was granted the authority to develop a state biosolids program (including the general permit) under RCW 70.95J.007. The purpose of the state biosolids rule (chapter 173-308 WAC) is to maximize beneficial use of biosolids while protecting human health and the environment. The purpose of the general permit is to implement the requirements of the rule.
Ecology previously sought public comment on its tentative decision to issue a new general permit. The comment period ended on February 20, 2015. Ecology received thirteen comments. A response to comments can be found at
Ecology issued a determination of nonsignificance (DNS) under the State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA) for the draft general permit. After review of a completed environmental checklist and other information on file, ecology determined this proposal will not have a probable significant adverse impact on the environment. The DNS and completed environmental checklist are at, or request a copy from the contact listed below.
The state biosolids program regulates biosolids (including septage) applied to the land, sold or given away in a bag or other container, being stored, transferred from one facility to another, or sewage sludge disposed in a municipal solid waste landfill.
The general permit will apply to all treatment works treating domestic sewage in the state including publicly and privately owned wastewater treatment plants that treat only domestic sewage, composting facilities that treat biosolids as a feedstock, biosolids beneficial use facilities, and septage management facilities.
The general permit is applicable within the boundaries of the state of Washington, including state and federal lands. It does not apply to lands within the boundaries of Indian reservations or lands outside of Indian reservations that are held in trust by the federal government for a tribe.
Three hundred and ninety-six have submitted a notice of intent to apply for coverage under the new general permit. A list of those facilities can be found at or by requesting from the contact listed below.
Each facility seeking coverage under the general permit must submit a complete permit application as defined in the general permit and comply with any SEPA and public notice requirements. Facilities that have met all these requirements will be "provisionally" approved for coverage under the general permit. Each facility's biosolids program will receive a full review prior to issuing "final" approval of coverage.
In accordance with the requirements in WAC 173-308-90005(4), an economic impact analysis (EIA) was conducted on the draft general permit to assess whether it may have a disproportionate economic impact on small businesses relative to large businesses. Ecology found that the draft general permit would not have a disproportionate impact on small businesses. The EIA may be obtained from or by requesting from the contact listed below.
Documents and information on the draft general permit may be obtained from or by requesting from the contact listed below.
Ecology is maintaining an interested parties list for anyone who wants to be informed about the general permit process. To be included on the list, notify the person listed below.
There will be a thirty-day comment period for the draft general permit and the DNS. Comments can be submitted in writing or at a public hearing. Written comments will be accepted by e-mail or United States mail. Send written comments to the contact listed below. Oral comments may be made at one of the public hearings:
June 16, 2015
Ecology Headquarters
3 p.m. – 5 p.m.
300 Desmond Drive S.E.
Lacey, WA 98503
June 17, 2015
Washington State Labor and Industries - Yakima
3 p.m. – 5 p.m.
15 West Yakima Avenue
Suite 100
Yakima, WA 98902
All comments received by 5:00 p.m. on June 24, 2015, will be considered during the development of a final general permit. A summary of responses to comments received will be prepared and made available. Ecology anticipates issuing a final general permit by July 22, 2015. Following issuance, there will be a thirty-day appeal period for the final general permit before it becomes effective on August 21, 2015.
For comments, questions, or requests please contact Rebecca Singer, State Biosolids Coordinator, Department of Ecology, P.O. Box 47600, Olympia, WA 98504-7600, e-mail, phone (360) 407-6108, physical address 300 Desmond Drive S.E., Lacey, WA 98503.