California Water Boards' Annual Performance Report - Fiscal Year  2018-19 



Inspection (Compliance and Non Compliance)
The Regional Board or State Board may inspect the facilities of any discharger at any time pursuant to Water Code, Section 13267. Compliance activities include all activities necessary to determine if discharges are in compliance with waste discharge requirements, NPDES permits, and related enforcement orders. Compliance inspections are classified as either Level A or Level B, with Level A being more thorough.

National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES)
The NPDES permit program (Section 402 of the Clean Water Act) controls water pollution by regulating point sources that discharge pollutants into waters of the United States. Point sources are discrete conveyances such as pipes or man-made ditches. Individual homes that are connected to a municipal system, use a septic system, or do not have a surface discharge do not need an NPDES permit; however, industrial, municipal, and other facilities must obtain permits if their discharges go directly to surface waters. US EPA has approved the Water Board's program to issue NPDES permits.
  • Major Facility
    Major municipal dischargers include all facilities with design flows of greater than one million gallons per day and facilities with approved industrial pretreatment programs. Major industrial facilities are determined based on specific ratings criteria developed by US EPA/State.
  • Minor Facility
    A minor facility is a discharge with a design flow of less than one million gallons per day (MGD) that has not been determined to have an actual or potential adverse environmental impact classifying the discharge as major.
  • General Permit
    An NPDES permit issued under 40 CFR 122.28 that authorizes a category of discharges under the Clean Water Act (CWA) within a geographical area. A general permit is not specifically tailored for an individual discharger.

Waste Discharge Requirements Program
The Waste Discharge Requirements (WDR) Program regulates all point source discharges of waste to land that do not require full containment (which falls under the Land Discharge Program), or are not subject to the NPDES Program.
  • Large Municipal Facilities
    Facilities discharging municipal waste serving a population equivalent to 1,000 people and with a design flow of greater than 100,000 gallons a day. This group only includes those facilities regulated with individual Waste Discharge Requirements (WDR).
  • Municipal Sources
    Facilities that treat sewage or a mixture of predominantly sewage and other waste from districts, municipalities, communities, hospitals, schools, and publicly or privately owned systems (excluding individual surface leaching systems disposing of less than 1,000 gallons per day).
  • Small Municipal and Domestic Waste Facilities
    Facilities discharging municipal waste serving a population equivalent to less than 1,000 people and with a design flow less than 100,000 gallons a day. Small municipal waste facilities are typically regulated under a general order and may include facilities discharging to subsurface systems such as septic tanks and leach fields or small wastewater package plants.
  • Industrial Sources
    Facilities that treat and/or dispose of liquid or semisolid wastes from any servicing, producing, manufacturing or processing operations of whatever nature including mining, gravel washing, geothermal operations, air conditioning, ship building and repairing, oil production, storage and disposal operations, and water well pumping.
  • All other WDR facilities
    All facilities that treat and/or dispose of wastes that do not fall into one of the Municipal, Industrial and Agricultural Waste categories. It does not include Dairies or other Confined Animal facilities.

  • Land Disposal
    The Land Disposal program regulates of waste discharge to land for treatment, storage and disposal in waste management units. Waste management units include waste piles, surface impoundments, and landfills. California Code of Regulations (CCR) Title 23, (Chapter 15) contains the regulatory requirements for hazardous waste. CCR Title 27, contains the regulatory requirements for wastes other than hazardous waste.