Industrial Waste Discharge

Discharge Limits/Regulations

Users of the sanitary sewer must comply with the rules and regulations that govern its use. In Fairfax County, all users must comply with the requirements of Chapter 67.1 of the County Code, including specific pollutant limits (local limits). Industrial users may be subject to additional requirements if their operations fall within certain federally mandated categories (metal finishers, printed circuit board manufacturers, etc.). A reference to some of the common sewer use prohibitions (pH limits, flammable substances, etc.) can be found in the General Sewer Use Requirements of the ordinance (Article 2).

Discharge Approvals/Permits

In accordance with county, state and federal regulations, Fairfax County is required to identify, locate, and evaluate industrial and commercial sewer users to determine the compatibility of user discharges with the publicly owned treatment works. Based on information provided by users on a Wastewater Discharge Survey Form, Fairfax County decides the type of approval to be issued for industrial discharges to the sanitary sewer. Approvals can be in the form of permits or authorizations. Fairfax County issues several types of approvals to industries discharging to the sanitary sewer. Approvals can be in the form of permits or authorizations. The type of approval is determined by the business classification (SIC code), waste characteristics, volume and potential risk to the sanitary sewer or treatment plant. Not every industrial discharger is required to have a permit or discharge authorization, but all dischargers must be in compliance with the Fairfax County Sewer Use Ordinance (Chapter 67.1 Sanitary Sewers and Sewage Disposal). Please contact the Industrial Waste Section at 703-550-9740 ext. 252, TTY 711 , if you have questions about your facility’s discharge.

Wastewater Discharge Permits - Issued to federally regulated industries (Categorical Industrial Users), dischargers with volumes of process wastes greater than 25,000 gallons per day, or any discharger with the potential to negatively impact the sanitary sewer system. Wastewater Discharge Permits may be issued after review and approval of a Wastewater Discharge Application.

Letter of Authorization - Issued to some dischargers of less than 25,000 gallons per day with low risk of negatively impacting the sanitary sewer system.

Verbal Authorization - Issued to some small and one-time dischargers.

Discharge Policies and Business Sector Notices

The following are some policies/notices for various wastewater producing activities. The list is not all inclusive and dischargers should also refer to the Fairfax County Sewer Use Ordinance (Chapter 67.1 Sanitary Sewers and Sewage Disposal).


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