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EPA Finalizes Rule to Require NPDES E-reporting [US]

New rule for October 2015

On September 24th, 2015, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) finalized a rule that affects reporting regulations under the Clean Water Act.

The new rule requires entities covered by the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) program to electronically report facility information to the EPA in lieu of using paper reports.

The EPA expects to publish the new rule in the Federal Register in October 2015. 

Requirements for the new rule

Industrial facilities as well as municipal, state, and federal regulators must use existing available information technology to submit data online to the EPA instead of filing paper reports.

To increase transparency, the rule requires facility-specific information, including inspection and enforcement history and pollutant monitoring, to be accessible to the public through EPA’s website.

The agency anticipates that the rule will not only make information about water pollution sources more readily available, but also save regulated entities millions of dollars nationwide by reducing the paperwork burden.

Awareness to the new rule

The EPA proposed the e-reporting rule in July 2013 to improve the NPDES program, which requires permitted facilities to monitor and report data on wastewater that they discharge into the waters of the United States.

In the coming months, the agency plans to schedule trainings and webinar sessions on implementing the electronic reporting system, preparing facilities to submit their data electronically one year after the effective date of this rule, which the EPA anticipates will be in late 2015.

Red-on-line EHS Legalist


Pre-publication Rule: National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) Electronic Reporting Rule, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, September 24, 2015.

Philip Pulitzer, EPA proposes electronic reporting rule for NPDES reports, Red-on-line USA, September 8th, 2014.

Additional information on the NPDES E-reporting rule is available at: http://www2.epa.gov/compliance/final-national-pollutant-discharge-elimination-system-npdes-electronic-reporting-rule 

40 CFR 122

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