Type: Law Bulletins
Date: 12/07/2021

Part I: Minnesota Pollution Control Agency Issues a Comprehensive Draft PFAS Wastewater Monitoring Program

*This article was updated on Dec. 15, 2021 to include the MPCA deadline extension to Jan. 21, 2022 for comments on the plan.

On Nov. 16, 2021, the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency released a Draft PFAS Monitoring Plan. This plan would require certain MPCA industrial and municipal waste water treatment plants (WWTPs) to monitor and report per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in their influent streams. The MPCA is seeking comments on the plan through Jan. 21, 2022, and plans to implement it beginning in early 2022.

The MPCA Wastewater Section will use its broad statutory mandate to prevent pollution to all waters of the state under Minn. Stat. § 115.03(b), to collect information “necessary or desirable . . . to prevent, control, or abate water pollution” from wastewater treatment plans.

The initial focus of monitoring will be on loads and sources of PFAS coming into municipal wastewater plants or PFAS used at industrial wastewater plants. Both industrial and municipal WWTPs scoped into the plan will be contacted and asked to conduct baseline quarterly monitoring of influent for one year. These permittees will also be asked to evaluate institutional and industrial users that have the potential to pass PFAS to these WWTPs. Where PFAS are detected, the MPCA will request that actions be taken to reduce or eliminate potential PFAS sources or activities.

Covered facilities will be notified via letter after the PFAS Monitoring Plan is finalized in early 2022 and asked to enter into a memorandum of understanding with the MPCA to implement the monitoring plan. Baseline sampling is likely to begin in the second half of 2022 into the first half of 2023.

The MPCA will hold an informational meeting for industrial and municipal wastewater permittees on Dec. 9, 2021, from 11 a.m.-12 p.m. central time. More information on how to obtain an invitation is available on the plan’s website.

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