Great Lakes Initiative: EPA Needs to Better Ensure the Complete and Consistent Implementation of Water Quality Standards

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DIANE Publishing, 2005 - 51 pages
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The virtual elimination of toxic pollutants in the Great Lakes is a goal shared by the U.S. & Canada. While some progress has been made, pollution levels remain unacceptably high. The Great Lakes Initiative (GLI) requires stringent water quality standards for many pollutants in discharges regulated by states administering the Nat. Pollution Discharge Elimination System permit programs. This report examines the: (1) GLI's focus & potential impact on water quality in the Great Lakes Basin; (2) status of GLI's adoption by the states & any challenges to achieving intended goals; & (3) steps taken by the EPA for ensuring full & consistent implementation of GLI & for assessing progress toward achieving its goals. Charts, tables & maps.

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Page 3 - January 2005 in accordance with generally accepted government auditing standards. A more detailed discussion of our scope and methodology appears in appendix I. RESULTS IN BRIEF...
Page 9 - 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. In most cases, the NPDES permit program is administered by authorized states.
Page 36 - Basin that can be used to measure overall restoration progress and (2) require that these indicators be used to evaluate, prioritize, and make funding decisions on the merits of alternative restoration projects. Agency Comments GAO provided EPA with a draft of this report for its review and comment. The agency generally agreed with the findings and recommendations in the report. EPA provided written comments; the full text of which is included in appendix V. EPA stated that significant accomplishments...
Page 7 - ... Implementation of Annex 10 concerning hazardous polluting substances. The Parties shall further consult from time to time for the purpose of revising the list of hazardous polluting substances and of identifying harmful quantities of these substances. (k) Persistent Toxic Substances. Measures for the control of inputs of persistent toxic substances including control programs for their production, use, distribution and disposal, in accordance with Annex 12. (1) Airborne Pollutants. Programs to...
Page 8 - The purpose of this program, which started in 1997, is to reduce and eliminate persistent toxic substances, especially those that bioaccumulate, in the Great Lakes.
Page 1 - The United States and Canada recognize the Great Lakes — the largest system of freshwater in the world — as a natural resource that is threatened on many environmental fronts. To protect this resource and to address common water quality problems, the two countries entered into the bilateral Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement in 1972 and last revised it in 1987.
Page 9 - Clean Water Act, the NPDES permit program controls water pollution by regulating point sources that discharge pollutants into waters of the United States.
Page 33 - EPA Should Take Further Steps to Address Funding Shortfalls and Time Slippages in Permit Compliance System Modernization Effort, EPA, OIG Rpt.
Page 8 - Basin, increase federal emphasis on controlling toxic pollution, and expedite the development of additional national criteria or standards for toxic substances to protect both the ecosystem and human health.

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