Wastewater

The University of Oregon has been issued a wastewater discharge permit required by the City of Eugene Code, Sections 6.501-6.596 and is granted permission to discharge wastewater into the sewage facilities of the City/Metropolitan Wastewater Management Commission (MWMC) under Permit number: U-100E. Discharges to the sewage system of the Publicly Owned Treatment Works (POTW), must comply with the local sewer use regulations, which is under the authority of the Eugene Public Works Wastewater Division.

It is important for lab users to be aware of the administrative and enforcement activities specific to the discharges occurring into the City’s sanitary sewers. The issuance of the U-100E is to preserve university and City infrastructure and protect water quality. This permit and chapter are established as a progressive schedule of compliance activities that range from providing education and technical assistance from University of Oregon Environmental Health and Safety to escalating enforcement action by the City of Eugene as necessary to achieve compliance. This chapter addresses local, state and federally mandated POTW and other discharge requirements.

GENERAL DISCHARGE PROHIBITIONS

No user shall discharge any pollutant into the City’s sewage system in a quantity which will harm the health of the city’s employees working in and around the city wastewater system, interfere with the operation or performance of the city wastewater system, contaminate the resulting sludge, or pass through the system inadequately treated into receiving waters, including but not limited to the following:  any liquids, solids or gases which by reason of their nature or quantity are, or may be sufficient either alone or in combination with other pollutants to cause fire or explosion or be injurious in any way to the City sewage system.

Most simple sugar and salts solutions may be drain disposed. Residues, the non-flowable material remaining on a normally empty container, are allowed to be rinsed with copious water. A few guidelines to help determine if a material is suitable:

  • Liquids must be less than 150°F
  • The pH of liquids must be between 6 and 11
  • No petroleum oil, dying agents, or organic solvents e.g. toluene, methylene chloride, hexanes, etc…
  • No flammable, toxic, corrosive, or reactive materials
  • No solid, highly viscous, or water insoluble materials
  • No malodorous or radioactive materials
  • No heavy metals [Arsenic (As), Barium (Ba), Cadmium (Cd), Chromium (Cr), Lead (Pb), Mercury (Hg) Selenium (Se), Silver (Ag)] or metals with high aquatic toxicity [Copper (Cu), Nickel (Ni), Zinc (Zn)]

If there is an unintentional discharge of the above materials, contact EHS at x6-3192, or x6-2348 as soon as possible. Provide the name of the material, an estimate of the amount, and the time of the discharge.

Contact the EHS Hazardous Waste Facility at x6-3192, or x6-2348 if you have any questions or for assistance in determining what materials in your lab may be disposed down the drain.