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Environmental Assessment

A Screening Assessment of the Potential Impacts of Climate Change on Combined Sewer Overflow (CSO) Mitigation in the Great Lakes and New England Regions (External Review Draft)

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Report Information

EPA has released this draft document solely for the purpose of pre-dissemination peer review under applicable information quality guidelines. This document has not been formally disseminated by EPA. It does not represent and should not be construed to represent any Agency policy or determination. EPA will consider any public comments submitted in accordance with this notice when revising the document.

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Thomas Johnson
  • by phone at:   703-347-8618
  • by fax at:   703-347-8694
  • by email at:  johnson.thomas@epa.gov

Background

This report describes the potential scope and magnitude of climate change impacts on combined sewer overflow (CSOs) mitigation efforts in the Great Lakes Region and New England Region. The report describes the extent to which CSO long-term control plans may be under-designed if planners assume that past precipitation conditions are representative of future conditions. Combined sewer systems (CSSs) collect and co-treat storm water and municipal wastewater. During high intensity rainfall events, the capacity of CSSs can be exceeded resulting in the discharge of untreated storm water and wastewater directly into receiving streams. These combined sewer overflow events (CSOs) can result in high concentrations of microbial pathogens, biochemical oxygen demand, suspended solids, and other pollutants in receiving waters.

Climate change in many parts of the country is expected to increase the proportion of rainfall occurring in high intensity events, resulting in increased stormwater runoff. Climate change could thus present a risk of increased CSO frequency and resulting water quality impairment.

History/Chronology

Sep 2006External review draft completed.

Next Steps

Following the public comment period, the report will undergo an external peer review. The report will then be revised to address comments and posted on the NCEA web page. EPA will consider any public comments submitted in accordance with this notice when revising the document.

Additional Information

Comments on this report may be submitted and reviewed using the e-Government Regulations.gov Web site. From the site, select Environmental Protection Agency and the keyword EPA-HQ-ORD-2007-0239 (for the docket ID) to comment on this report.

Citation

U.S. EPA. A Screening Assessment of the Potential Impacts of Climate Change on Combined Sewer Overflow (CSO) Mitigation in the Great Lakes and New England Regions (External Review Draft). U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Washington, DC, EPA/600/R-07/033A.

Downloads

This download(s) is distributed solely for the purpose of pre-dissemination peer review under applicable information quality guidelines. It has not been formally disseminated by EPA. It does not represent and should not be construed to represent any Agency determination or policy.

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