Industrial Wastewater Discharge Standards

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industrial wastewater discharge standards

Industrial wastewater discharge standards are the requirements that businesses must meet before they may connect their business to a public sewer and discharge to that sewer system.

Depending on the type of industrial wastewater, these standards will vary. For example, a business that uses dyes or vegetable tanning solutions must be able to demonstrate that their wastewater can be pretreated at a treatment plant to eliminate these objectionable colors.


Pretreatment of industrial wastewater is the process of reducing or eliminating the concentration of pollutants in a wastewater stream. It is an essential step in ensuring compliance with federal, state, and local pollution discharge standards.

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Chemicals are added to the water for the purpose of modifying its composition, making it less toxic or hazardous. To ensure effective treatment, the chemicals must be thoroughly mixed with the water.

In addition, they must be fed in the proper dosage and introduced at the right locations in the wastewater system. This requires frequent testing to determine the best course of action.

High Biochemical Oxygen Demand (BOD) & Chemical Oxygen Demand (COD) – Many industrial and domestic wastes release oxygen-demanding substances into the wastewater. This increases BOD and can cause significant sewer surcharge fees.

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Activated sludge, a type of biological wastewater treatment method, is used to remove carbonaceous pollutants. It begins with aeration and a biological floc composed of bacteria and protozoa.


Whether you reuse or discharge industrial wastewater, you need to ensure that it is properly treated before you can do so. This is essential for your operations and also for the quality of products that you make.

The first step is to review the waste streams that you produce and how they are combined. This will help you develop a treatment system that can efficiently treat your wastewater and keep it compliant.

This information can also be used to identify potential contaminant sources and determine the best way to manage them. If you know the sources of pollutants, you can avoid bringing them into your facility in the first place.

This can save you significant costs and prevent violations. It will also give you peace of mind that your waste is being properly managed. It can also help you determine whether to add wastewater treatment processes, or if collecting offending wastes is a better option.


Industrial wastewaters are a common and often hazardous waste that results from a variety of process plant operations. Treatment of these wastewaters is necessary to ensure the safety of human health and the environment as well as for economic reasons.

There are various types of reuse options for wastewater, including a number of chemical treatments and biological processes. These treatments can be used to remove odors, oil and grease, and other contaminants in order to produce clean water suitable for reuse.

There is a growing interest in water reuse around the world. The United States is leading the way with 39 of 50 states now having some sort of regulation or guideline on reuse. This trend is expected to continue throughout the next few years.


Industrial wastewater is a by-product of many different industries, including oil and gas, chemical, and food and beverage manufacturing. Before it can be used for reuse or discharged to natural water bodies, it must undergo treatment to ensure compliance with various local and state regulations.

Industrial facilities are responsible for complying with locally developed limits, and federally imposed “categorical” standards. They also must maintain their own license in good standing and receive training credits (sometimes called CEUs, ECHs, TCHs, or PDHs) to continue doing business.

The first general wastewater discharge standards were proposed in 1986. These were concentration-based and specified four receiving environments. They assumed a minimum eight-fold dilution in the receiving water body.