A manufacturing operation generally requires several environmental permits in order to legally operate. These permits may be for wastewater, storm water, and/or air discharges associated with its operations. Each of these permits will detail the specific requirements needed to maintain compliance with the associated discharges. It is extremely important that each permit is thoroughly reviewed to understand these legal requirements. Unfortunately a defense of not reading your permit will not withstand the scrutiny of your State, Federal or Local compliance or enforcement manager.
Most permits can be reviewed in an hour or less depending on the complexity of the facility. A more complex facility that has Title V permit may require a longer period of time to review. If there are sections of the permit that are difficult to understand do not be afraid to ask questions from your regulatory compliance manager or environmental consultant. Your lack of understanding the permit requirements are also not a proper defense to noncompliance.
Some of the facility permits will last several years before reissuance is required. We recommend that not only do you review the permit upon issuance but also annually to ensure continuing compliance. With that said constructing a compliance calendar with the facility’s permit requirements is an invaluable tool to help reduce liability and increase permit compliance.