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Stormwater Tenant Information

Where do I find Seaport Tenant Stormwater Information?
Seaport tenants play a crucial role in protecting water quality in Puget Sound. Any polluting activity has direct effects on the Lower Duwamish, Shilshole Bay or Elliot Bay. The Port of Seattle is actively working with tenants to improve operations and manage stormwater runoff for better protection of the natural environment.

Stormwater Permit Coverage

The Washington State Department of Ecology (Ecology) regulates how the port handles stormwater runoff on all of the port's properties. Stormwater regulations are part of the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System of permits created by EPA. Approximately 70% of port tenants are covered by one of the following permits:

• Industrial Stormwater General Permit
• Boatyard General Permit
• Construction General Permit
• Individual Permit

The 30% of tenants not covered by an Industrial or Boatyard general permit are subject to the conditions of the NPDES Phase I Municipal Stormwater Permit issued to the seaport in 2007. The municipal permit requires most other tenants to develop a Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plan that includes structural and operational mechanisms to protect water quality.

Get a general overview of the port’s activities related to the municipal permit.

View maps indicating what Permits properties are subject to - North Extent Map (347 KB, PDF), South Extent Map (366 KB, PDF) If you have additional questions regarding stormwater permit coverage, please refer to your lease or contact your property manager.

What are the Industrial Permit Responsibilities?

Routinely, tenants who hold an Ecology Industrial Permit are responsible to comply with the requirements of their Industrial Stormwater General Permit. The requirements include:

• Discharge Limitations
• Monitoring Record and Recordkeeping Requirements
• Condition “No Exposure” Certificate
• Compliance with Standards
• Operation and Maintenance
• Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plan (1.05 MB PDF)
• Solid and Liquid Waste Disposal

Tenant activities covered under the Industrial Stormwater General Permit are not covered by the port's municipal permit. See our FAQs for more information on facility categories needing permits and fact sheets associated with common industrial activities.
 
Check to see if Ecology has received all your discharge monitoring reports.
What are Boatyard Permit Holder Responsibilities?
Tenants who hold an Ecology Boatyard Permit are responsible for compliance with the requirements of their Boatyard General Permit. The requirements include:

• Discharge Limitations
• Monitoring Requirements
• Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plan (1.05MB PDF)
• Reporting and Recordkeeping Requirements
• Solid Waste Management
• Reporting for Zebra Mussel Control

Tenant activities covered under the Boatyard General Permit are not covered by the port's municipal permit. Check to see if Ecology has received all your Discharge Monitoring Reports.

Don’t have a permit and need to wash your boat? 
Ecology information on Hull Cleaning and Boat Washing
Municipal Permit Tenant Education
Tenants covered under the Port's Phase I Municipal Stormwater Permit are responsible for implementing appropriate Best Management Practices (BMPs) as required by the City of Seattle and the Seaport. Tenants should ensure that their employees understand their role in protecting water quality and preventing pollutants from entering local receiving waters.

 

Learn more: The following links contain useful informational for Seaport Tenants to promote proper BMP utilization and educate employees on applicable rules and regulations. Contact the Seaport Stormwater Program Manager for more information or to schedule a technical assistance site visit for help complying with stormwater regulations.

  1. City of Seattle Source Control BMPs
  2. Port of Seattle Facility-Specific BMPs:
  3. Free Spill Kit Flyer and How to Clean up a Spill Poster
  4. No Cost Hazardous Waste Disposal Information and Form
Municipal Permit - Tenant Responsibility for Illicit Discharge Detection and Elimination (IDDE)
Tenants are responsible for eliminating any non-stormwater connections to the storm drainage system and should take care not to dump or discharge any substance (other than rainwater runoff) into the storm drainage system. Any non-stormwater discharge into the storm drainage system is considered an illicit discharge and is prohibited under the Port's Illicit Discharge Policy (77 KB PDF).

Illicit Discharge Detection and Elimination (IDDE)

The Seaport's Illicit Detection and Discharge Elimination (IDDE) program concentrates on the detection, removal and prevention of illicit connections and discharges, including spills, into the Port-maintained storm drain system. The goal of the program is to prevent anything other than clean rain water from entering the storm drain system which can eventually be washed into Puget Sound.
 
The IDDE program contains several components.
  • An adopted policy prohibiting illicit discharges
  • An enforcement plan with mechanisms for ensuring compliance An ongoing effort to create an electronic map of all outfall locations, land use, storm drain pipes and structures
  • A program to document operation and maintenance records for stormwater facilities
  • Field inspections of every outfall to identify and remove illicit discharges
  • A spill response plan with a qualified spill responder
Review the Seaport's IDDE Policy (77 KB, PDF).
 
The Seaport works with tenants to avoid spills and non-stormwater discharges to the drainage system. In the event of an accidental spill, follow the Environmental Incident Notification Guidelines (89 KB, PDF) to report the spill or discharge. 
 
Learn more about the port's IDDE Program – including the Seaport's efforts to map the storm drainage network. IDDE is also addressed in our FAQs page. If you observe or suspect that an illicit discharge has occurred, please refer to the Seaport's Environmental Incident Reporting Guidelines (89 KB PDF).
Municipal Permit - Construction Projects
New development projects and re-development projects on port property must adhere to strict standards to protect water quality. When performing construction projects on port property, tenants are required to notify their property manager. In addition, tenants must acquire any permits or meet requirements for projects under their control. Please contact your property manager or refer to your lease and preferential use language for additional information.

If your construction project will disturb more than one acre, you must apply for a Construction Stormwater General Permit from the Department of Ecology and develop an appropriate erosion and sediment control plan to protect downstream water quality. All tenants are required to obtain their own construction permits and meet all requirements of those permits during the construction process. City Code is triggered at 750 square feet of land disturbing activity and tenants should review this before beginning any project.

Tenants are encouraged to consider low impact development (LID) alternatives when designing new projects. LID is a stormwater management strategy that emphasizes conservation and use of existing, natural site features to more closely mimic natural rainwater runoff patterns. The success of LID strategies (such as permeable paving, vegetated roofs, and rainwater collection systems), is highly dependent on local conditions. Tenants should work closely with the Seaport Stormwater Program Manager and their designing engineer to determine if LID alternatives are feasible on their site.

If you have additional questions regarding construction projects or the Construction Stormwater General Permit please refer to your lease or contact your property manager.
Municipal Permit - Operations and Maintenance
Most tenants are responsible for maintaining stormwater structures on their property. These structures include curbing, ditches, sanitary sewer connections, floor drains, channels, pipelines, conduits, roads or streets, curbs, gutters, ditches, manmade channels, storm drains, French drains, catch basins and manholes that may have inserts to collect oil and grease. Port staff can assist tenants with maintenance or repairs to these structures. To request or report issues please contact your port property manager. Your lease and preferential use language can also be helpful in understanding your requirements. If you have additional questions regarding operation and maintenance practices please contact your property manager.
Municipal Permit - Source Control and Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plans (SWPPPs)
Tenants who hold an Ecology NPDES permit are required to have a Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plan (SWPPP) as part of their permit. This includes Industrial, Boatyard, Construction, and Individual NPDES permits. The Municipal Permit requires most other tenants to develop a SWPPP that includes structural and operational mechanisms to protect water quality. Structural mechanisms include installing covers over storage areas and shut-off valves around fueling areas. Operational controls include sweeping debris and pollutants away from the storm drainage system and maintaining spill response supplies in clearly marked areas. The seaport provides a template to assist tenants in developing a SWPPP. This SWPPP template not only helps tenants to easily create a SWPPP, but it also provides an easy reference for the Best Management Practices required of ALL businesses in the City of Seattle.

swppp template.pdf (1.05 MB)

City of Seattle Municipal Code