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D. Management Measure for Construction Site Chemical Control

  • Limit the application, generation, and migration of toxic substances;
  • Ensure the proper storage and disposal of toxic materials; and
  • Apply nutrients at rates necessary to establish and maintain vegetation without causing significant nutrient runoff to surface water.

1. Applicability

This management measure is intended to be applied by States to new, resurfaced, restored, and rehabilitated road, highway, and bridge construction projects in order to reduce toxic and nutrient loadings from such project sites. Under the Coastal Zone Act Reauthorization Amendments of 1990, States are subject to a number of requirements as they develop coastal NPS programs in conformity with this management measure and will have some flexibility in doing so. The application of management measures by States is described more fully in Coastal Nonpoint Pollution Control Program: Program Development and Approval Guidance, published jointly by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) of the U.S. Department of Commerce.

2. Description

The objective of this measure is to guard against toxic spills and hazardous loadings at construction sites from equipment and fuel storage sites. Toxic substances tend to bind to fine soil particles; however, by controlling sediment mobilization, it is possible to limit the loadings of these pollutants. Also, some substances such as fuels and solvents are hazardous and excess applications or spills during construction can pose significant environmental impacts. Proper management and control of toxic substances and hazardous materials should be the adopted procedure for all construction projects and should be established by erosion and sediment control plans. Additional relevant practices are described in Management Measure III.B of this chapter.

3. Management Measure Selection

This management measure was selected because of existing practices that have been shown to be effective in mitigating construction-generated NPS pollution at highway project sites and equipment storage yards. In addition, maintenance areas containing road salt storage, fertilizers and pesticides, snowplows and trucks, and tractor mowers have the potential to contribute NPS pollutants to adjacent watercourses if not properly managed (AASHTO, 1988, 1991a). This measure is intended to safeguard surface waters and ground water from toxic and hazardous pollutants generated at construction sites. Examples of effective implementation of this measure are presented in the section on construction in urban areas. Several State environmental agencies are using this approach to regulate toxic and hazardous pollutants (Florida DER, 1988; Puget Sound Basin, 1991).

4. Practices

As discussed more fully at the beginning of this chapter and in Chapter 1, the following practices are described for illustrative purposes only. State programs need not require implementation of these practices. However, as a practical matter, EPA anticipates that the management measure set forth above generally will be implemented by applying one or more management practices appropriate to the source, location, and climate. The practices set forth below have been found by EPA to be representative of the types of practices that can be applied successfully to achieve the management measure described above.

The practices that are applicable to this management measure are described in Section III.B.

5. Effectiveness Information and Cost Information

The detailed cost and effectiveness data presented in the Section III.A of this chapter describing NPS controls for construction projects in urban development areas are also applicable to highway construction projects.

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This page last updated October 4, 1999