Rulemaking

Adopted rule

Administrative Order No. DEQ 15-2015
Filed and effective Dec. 10, 2015
See Oregon Bulletin - January 2016

Courtney Brown503-229-6839

DEQ has developed new rules for water quality trading. DEQ proposed these rules to the Oregon Environmental Commission, seeking approval at the commission's December 2015 meeting, after receiving feedback and input from three policy forums, as well as a public comment period. These rules will strengthen the underpinnings of DEQ’s water quality trading program and provide clarity and regulatory certainty for both stakeholders and DEQ staff.

Water Quality Trading Policy Forum

DEQ is revising its internal management directive and developing new rules for water quality trading. The rules and policy revisions will strengthen DEQ’s water quality trading program and provide clarity and regulatory certainty for both stakeholders and DEQ staff. DEQ will ask the Oregon Environmental Commission to approve the proposed rules at its December 2015 meeting.

Water quality trading helps pollution sources achieve the Clean Water Act’s required objectives. Trading can also benefit water quality and habitat across a watershed.

Water quality trading provides National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System permit holders a way to meet pollutant reduction requirements in a holistic, watershed approach. This may result in greater benefits to water quality and fish and wildlife habitat than can be realized through traditional end-of-pipe compliance approaches.

There is currently no state or federal water quality trading regulatory framework in Oregon. This has caused uncertainty and confusion about permit and Clean Water Act compliance. Regulatory certainty is necessary to implement trades that meet or exceed projected outcomes from DEQ water quality programs that do not use trading. This policy revision and rulemaking aims to create the required regulatory certainty.

Forum Charter

Policy Forum 5
July 14, 2015

Meeting Summary
Background Materials:

Presentations:

Policy Forum 4
May 14, 2015
Revised Draft Water Quality Trading Rules  for discussion purposes
Participant Comments on Revised Draft Water Quality Trading Rules (submitted by May 22, 2015):
Policy Forum 3.5
April 9, 2015
Background materials:
Presentations:
Policy Forum 3
March 5, 2015

Policy Forum 2 
Jan. 29, 2015

Policy Forum 1
Dec. 4, 2014

 
 

Public involvement

The comment period closed on 4 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 25, 2015
 
includes invitation to comment, notice, and draft rulesncludes invitation to comment, notice, and draft rules
 

EQC action

Meeting held Dec. 10, 2015
Staff Report - Item M
Resolution:  Adopted Rules 
Minutes