Ready to break ground on your new construction project? Hang on! Did you know that if you are disturbing the soil at your site, you may need to obtain coverage under the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC) State Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (SPDES) General Permit for Stormwater Discharges from Construction Activity?

You need coverage if your site is in New York and falls in the following categories:

  1. Construction activities that disturb one (1) or more acres of land;
  2. Construction activities that disturb less than (1) acre of land where the NYSDEC has determined stormwater discharges may impact surface waters of the State; or
  3. Construction activities that disturb between five thousand (5,000) square feet and one (1) acre of land within the entirety of the New York City East of Hudson Watershed.

The current SPDES General Permit for Stormwater Discharges from Construction Activity (GP-0-20-001) became effective on January 29, 2020 and will expire in January 2025. The permit includes information such as the types of discharges that are allowed from construction sites, as well as those that are prohibited. It also outlines the requirements for Pollution Prevention Measures and Erosion and Sediment Controls that are included in Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plans (SWPPPs).

In order to obtain coverage under the General Permit, Site owners must prepare a SWPPP in accordance with the requirements of the permit. A Notice of Intent (NOI) must be submitted to the NYSDEC after the SWPPP is prepared. If the construction Site is located within a Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) area, the SWPPP must be reviewed and accepted by the appropriate regulatory agency prior to submission to the NYSDEC. In the case of New York City (where approximately 25% of the land is located within MS4 areas), the regulatory agency that would review and approve the SWPPP is the New York City Department of Environmental Protection (NYCDEP).

If you are planning a construction project that you think may meet the criteria listed above, Walden can help you prepare and implement your SWPPP and navigate the requirements set forth by the regulatory agencies. Give us a call today at 516-588-6859!