Municipalities and States implement trash and floatable stormwater control through
management programs and policy
NANCY SULLINS MPH, LEED AP
THE CLEAN WATER ACT (CWA) ESTABLISHES THE BASIC STRUCTURE FOR REGULATING DISCHARGES OF POLLUTANTS INTO THE WATERS OF THE UNITED STATES AND REGULATING QUALITY STANDARDS FOR SURFACE WATERS. THE BASIS OF THE CWA WAS ENACTED IN 1948 AS THE FEDERAL WATER POLLUTION CONTROL ACT, BY 1972 THE ACT BECAME COMMONLY KNOWN AS “CLEAN WATER ACT".
Trash, often referred to as floatables, is a pollutant. Trash in waters can prevent beneficial uses, degrade habitats, harm wildlife, and may endanger people’s health. The Clean Water Act Section 303(d) requires all states to evaluate and identify water bodies where current pollution controls are insufficient to attain water quality standards. Over 200 individual water body reaches in various states have been listed for trash, debris or floatables since 1996.
Each state’s 303(d) list helps establish priorities for the development of Total Maximum Daily Loads (TMDL) or other measures to clean up waterways. A TMDL is like a pollution budget for a system. In a TMDL, all the sources of a pollutant are identified, and each source is assigned a maximum amount of the pollutant that may be discharged. To develop a TMDL, a costly in-depth study is needed and can take many years to establish. Four states and a territory, Alaska, California, Maryland, and the District of Columbia, have established Trash TMDLs.
Moving forward, other less costly and more streamlined measures for addressing trash or floatable pollutants are being implemented. Municipalities and States have chosen to implement trash and floatable control through management programs and policy.
- New York City, NY – Floatable and Settable Trash and Debris Management Program
- San Francisco, CA – Trash Management Program
- City and County of Honolulu, HI – Trash Reduction Plan
- Texas Commission on Environmental Control – General Permit TXR040000 for Phase II MS4
- California - Statewide Trash Policy
All these programs allow for the use of trash capture technologies. Some technologies are more complex than others. Such as the floating booms and open water trash capture units used in:
- Washington, D.C.
- New York City, NY
- Baltimore, MD
- Houston, TX
ParkUSA® has numerous control options for trash, litter, and floatable collection and their removal.
The TrashTrooper® family of floatable collection products are patented inline screening systems designed to collect and contain a wide variety of floatable pollution. ParkUSA TrashTrooper® captures unwanted floatable pollutants from stormwater systems. Inside the interceptor, the influent encounters a floatable collection bar screen that traps floating debris as small as 1 ½” in size, the separated effluent exits the TrashTrooper® and continues through the municipal storm sewer systems (MS4), leaving behind debris in the product. Outfall structures with floatable collection screens are available to serve as water quality features to be used in flood control management projects.
The StormTrooper® family of hydrodynamic separation products are patented stormwater wet vaults specifically designed to intercept litter, debris, total suspended sediments (TSS), free oils,grease, and other pollutants found in stormwater runoff. The StormTrooper® features enhanced gravity separation technology, which utilizes coalescing media plates (CMP) engineered to a performance prediction based on Stokes’s Law.
BioBasin® is a water quality and treatment device that is designed to specifically remove floatable trash, hydrocarbons and sediment as well as bacteria from stormwater. The NutriBasin® is a filtration device designed to remove dissolved nutrients (e.g. phosphorus and nitrogen) from stormwater runoff. It exhibits high removal rates, especially for phosphorous (above 90% removal). The unit also contributes to sediment and floatable retention. It consists of a concrete vault with top access hatchway, inlet and outlet pipe connections, and an engineered biofiltration media contained in removable cartridges.
The MarshBasin® is a wetland stormwater treatment best management practice (BMP) an engineered ecosystem that emulates the natural wetland’s ability to improve water quality. The MarshBasin® can be used in stand-alone applications, pretreatment for infiltration, rainwater harvesting, and detention applications. It uses a combination of physical, chemical, and biological processes to remove nutrients, sediments, hydrocarbons, metals, and trash. It can also be used alongside other BMPs to maximize water quality. Its design allows for use from small urban areas to highly developed cities.
The TreeBasin® is a biofiltration stormwater treatment BMP that can be used in applications like stand-alone treatment, pretreatment for infiltration, rainwater harvesting, and detention. The TreeBasin® system uses a combination of physical, chemical, and biological processes to remove nutrients, sediments, hydrocarbons, metals, and trash from stormwater. It can be used alongside other BMPs to maximize water quality. Its design allows for use from small urban areas to highly developed cities. The TreeBasin® uses an engineered filtration/absorbing media, which presents the ideal characteristics to grow a tree.
ParkUSA® believes in water technology development to combine efficiency and environmentally friendly products. ParkUSA’s goal is to offer its customers sustainable green solutions that meet todays needs, as well as anticipated changes in regulations.
Contact us for more information and design assistance.
MUNICIPALITIES AND STATES IMPLEMENT TRASH AND FLOATABLE STORMWATER CONTROL THROUGH
MANAGEMENT PROGRAMS AND POLICY
BY NANCY SULLINS MPH, LEED AP