Activity that takes place at industrial facilities, such as material handling and storage, is often exposed to the weather. When runoff from rain comes into contact with one of these activities in a shipping area, material storage area, or any area in a facility that is subject to contamination with raw materials, it can pick up pollutants and transport them to a nearby storm sewer system or directly into a stream, lake or river.
Stormwater pollution, unlike some pollution problems, cannot be covered by one set of rules that applies to all industrial facilities. In many industrial facilities, stormwater pollution can be prevented with common-sense precautions and modest changes in routine operations or maintenance practices.
Operators of industrial and commercial facilities should implement Best Management Practices (BMPs) on an ongoing basis wherever they would be effective at preventing pollutants from flowing with stormwater from their facility. Every facility should be evaluated to decide what works best, because storm water pollution control practices take a number of forms, and may include a wide range of solutions. The bottom line is that it’s best to manage stormwater before it is discharged to a storm drain.
Use the menu on the left to see the permit, find out if you are required to have a permit and apply. If you already have a permit, below are the Annual Reporting Forms that need to be completed & submitted annually.
Annual Reporting Forms
Frequently Asked Questions
On June 13, 2006 the Omaha City Council approved a Stormwater Management Ordinance (Chapter 32 of the Omaha Municipal Code) that allows the City to issue industrial stormwater permits to industries that are subject to the state National Pollution Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) stormwater regulations.
For an overview of the Industrial Stormwater Permit program, please refer to the following brochure:
The permitting program is intended to identify and eliminate outdoor, exposed pollutants generated by businesses that are affecting, or could affect, the municipal separate storm sewer system and local waters.
Keeping pollutants out of the storm drainage system is important because pollutants, generated by businesses or other sources, are washed away to the nearby water bodies without receiving treatment to remove pollutants, so it will ultimately compromise the quality of our waters.
The nature of the activities of industrial and commercial facilities often involve bulk storage of chemicals, fuels, large volume of equipment storage, and regular loading and unloading of materials. Due to these activities, there is an increased potential for stormwater to be exposed to pollutants. In addition, industrial and commercial facilities often have a high percentage of impervious surfaces at their site which lead to increased runoff that has a greater chance of picking up pollutants.
What industries are subject to the State National Pollution Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) stormwater regulations?
Industries subject to the stormwater regulations are identified by their Standard Industrial Classification (SIC) code. An industry is required to comply with the requirements of the stormwater regulations if at least one of its applicable SIC codes fall under one of the designated 30 sectors.
These 30 sectors are listed in Appendix B of Omaha’s Industrial Stormwater Permit.
For more information, refer to Appendix B:
If the nature of my industrial activities is categorized by one of the designated sectors, what are my next steps?
Determine if, through your facility’s activities and industrial materials, stormwater is exposed to pollutants that could result in a discharge to waters of the state, the municipal separate storm sewer system (MS4), or the municipal combined sewer system (CSS).
- The facility needs to apply for coverage under the City of Omaha’s General Stormwater Permit, and
- The facility needs to apply for coverage under the State of Nebraska’s General Stormwater Permit.
- The facility needs to apply for a No Exposure Certification (NEC) exclusion with the City of Omaha, and
- The facility needs to apply for a No Exposure Certification (NEC) exclusion with the State of Nebraska.
- Submit a completed City of Omaha Notice of Intent (NOI) application with supporting documents (if site does not qualify for NEC status) or a completed NEC form to the City of Omaha Environmental Quality Control Division (EQCD) – Stormwater Section at: www.omahastormwater.org
- Mail a completed State of Nebraska NOI application or NEC form (as applicable) to the Nebraska Department of Environmental Quality (NDEQ) at:
NPDES Municipal and Industrial Section
Nebraska Department of Environmental Quality
PO Box 98922
Lincoln, NE 68509-8922
- Authorization letters will be sent by EQCD Stormwater Section and NDEQ once your applications have been reviewed and processed.
- Maintain the required documentation over the life of the permit authorization.
- Modify the permit as needed when required.
If the facility needs to cancel its authorization for stormwater discharges:
- Submit a completed Notice of Termination (NOT) to EQCD – Stormwater Section at: www.omahastormwater.org
- Mail a completed Notice of Termination (NOT) to NDEQ at the above mailing address.
- The NDEQ requires each industry to reapply for permit coverage or no exposure certification every 5 years. The City of Omaha’s authorization for permit coverage or no exposure certification does not expire.
There is no application fee for the City of Omaha’s Industrial Stormwater Permit or No Exposure Certification. NDEQ also does not charge a fee for either application.
The permit requires that facilities develop and implement a Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plan (SWPPP) that is designed to eliminate or minimize stormwater contact with materials that may result in polluted stormwater discharges from their site. The SWPPP must incorporate specific best management practices (BMPs) applicable to the site. See below for more information about the requirements of the SWPPP. The site must also complete the Risk Assessment Checklist.
NOTE: EQCD – Stormwater Section will not review permit applications unless the SWPPP and Risk Assessment Checklist are submitted with the NOI/Application. The SWPPP and Risk Assessment Checklist are not required when applying for the No Exposure Certification exclusion.
The SWPPP is a “living” document that is intended to be regularly updated and must be kept on site. The SWPPP consists of a Narrative and Site Maps. The SWPPP must include:
- Identification of the Pollution Prevention Team
- Site description
- Receiving waters and wetlands
- Identification and location of potential pollutant sources
- Stormwater controls
- Identification of Best Management Practices
- Associated documentation
- Required certification and signatures
For additional information, the following references are available:
BMPs are practices or structures designed to reduce the quantities of pollutants that enter the storm sewer system or nearby lakes and creeks. Practices such as employee training, spill prevention and response, and regular inspections are just a few examples of BMPs. Structural BMPs could include secondary containment, stormwater detention basins, stormwater retention basins, grass swales, and more.
For a list of BMPs specific to your industry, please see the City’s sector-specific fact sheets.
The City of Omaha will conduct inspections as required by the City’s Municipal Stormwater Permit issued by the State of Nebraska. At the time of the inspection, inspectors will review the storage and usage practices of materials, the site’s SWPPP and supporting documentation (if required), and overall compliance with the permit or No Exposure Certification.
Sources of stormwater pollution that inspectors will typically look for include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Discharge from commercial vehicle washing, equipment washing, or power washing into the storm drainage system.
- Evidence that work areas such as oily service bays are being hosed out and discharged into the storm drainage system.
- Evidence of dumping materials and waste into the storm drainage system including materials such as concrete, paint, automotive fluids, etc.
- Leakage from barrels and other outdoor containers.
- Failure to properly manage leaks and spills.
- Open or leaking dumpsters.
- Mismanagement of hazardous wastes.
- Oily, dirty items (such as engine parts or grills) and open containers of liquids or other materials that are left outdoors and exposed to rainfall.
- Exposure of process activities and equipment to rainfall that is likely to result in pollutant wash-off.
- Track-out of sediment and other materials from facilities onto roadways, and from indoor areas to outdoor areas.
- Evidence of failure to maintain grease traps and interceptors.
- Any other poor housekeeping practices that result in the exposure of pollutants to stormwater.
NOTE: The storm drainage system includes storm inlets, roadside drainage ditches and all man-made and natural water conveyance systems such as channels, creeks, etc.
The City of Omaha can pursue enforcement action through the permitting authority specified in the Stormwater Management Ordinance, Chapter 32, of the Omaha Municipal Code. Consideration for enforcement will be dependent on the severity of the identified problems, the length of time a problem has gone unaddressed, and the business’s promptness in completing necessary corrective actions.
The State’s involvement in enforcement actions will be considered on a case by case basis.
To prepare your business for inspection, start by familiarizing yourself with potential and actual sources of pollutants at your business and the locations of storm inlets and nearby waterways that could receive any drainage or runoff from your facility.
Determine whether materials are being intentionally or accidentally discharged from your facility into the stormwater drainage system or local waterways. Consider what will happen when it rains and exposed pollutants like oil, grease, concrete spills, sediment, chemicals, food waste, etc. that are left on the ground or improperly stored outside could be washed into storm inlets.
Identify changes that you could make to prevent pollutants at your facility from getting into the storm drainage system and local waters. Sometimes this can be as simple as keeping outdoor areas clean, moving waste and chemicals to a covered storage area, or even keeping dumpsters closed.
Environmental Quality Control Division (EQCD) Stormwater personnel are available to offer assistance with the permitting process, Omaha Municipal Code, or other stormwater related questions.
The stormwater hotline is (402)444-3905. Also see the guidance documents, permits, and other useful links in this section as well as throughout the www.omahastormwater.org website.
The regulators with the Nebraska Department of Environmental Quality (NDEQ) and National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) Stormwater program are available to help. Contact Emma Trewhitt at (402)471-8330 or E-mail for assistance. Additional resources are available on the NDEQ website: http://www.deq.state.ne.us/
The new NDEQ – NPDES Industrial Stormwater General Permit became effective July 1, 2011.
This permit replaces the general permit for Storm Water Discharges Associated with Industrial Activity (ISW-GP, NER000000) issued September 18, 1997, and previously on Administrative Extension.
The new permit, ISW-GP, NPDES NER900000, along with associated forms and guidance documents are available on the NDEQ website.
Additional Assistance Information: