Texas NPDES regulations & environmental compliance analysis

Texas NPDES: What you need to know

Governing Law and Regulations

Permit applications: Texas Water Code (TWC) 26.028

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Surface water quality standards: 30 Texas Administrative Code (TAC) 307.1 to 307.10

Toxic pollutant effluent standards: 30 TAC 314.1

Crude oil and gas activities: TWC 26.131

Criteria and standards for the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit program: 30 TAC 308.1 to 308.141

Applicability: 30 TAC 305.531 to 305.541

Individual permits: 30 TAC 305

General permits:

Applications: 30 TAC 305.48

Regulatory Agencies

Texas Commission of Environmental Quality (TCEQ) Office of Permitting and Registration Water Quality Division

Railroad Commission of Texas (RRCT)

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Region 6

See ADDRESSES & CONTACTS for addresses and telephone numbers.

See national section for basic information and federal regulations.

Comparison: State vs. Federal

• Rules. The Texas Commission of Environmental Quality's (TCEQ) National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) program has federal regulatory authority over discharges of pollutants to Texas surface water, with the exception of discharges associated with oil, gas, and geothermal exploration and development activities, which are regulated by the Railroad Commission of Texas (RRCT). Texas refers to its NPDES program as the Texas Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (TPDES) program.

The state requirements are similar to those for a federal permit. However, Texas also requires maps and a detailed technical report as part of the state's application process. The state also has a fee structure and permit modification rules. A temporary variance for a TPDES permit requires review and approval by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) during the ...


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