Skip to Main Content View Text-Only

Charter, Code and Policies

City of Portland

GENERAL INFORMATION: 503-823-4000

EMAIL: cityinfo@portlandoregon.gov

More Contact Info

17.34.020 Definitions.

(Replaced by Ordinance No. 185397; amended by Ordinance Nos. 185870, 186403 and 186902, effective December 26, 2014.)  As used in this Chapter and associated rules the following definitions apply:

A.  “Branch Sewer” means the public portion of the underground piping system that connects from the plumbing system of a building or buildings to a public sewer.

B.  “Categorical Pretreatment Standards” mean limitations on pollutant discharges to POTWs from specific types of new or existing industrial users. These standards are promulgated by the EPA in accordance with Sections 307 (b) and (c) of the Clean Water Act. This term includes prohibitive limitations established pursuant to 40 CFR 403.5

C.  “Clean Water Act (CWA)” means the Federal Water Pollution Control Act, as amended (33 U.S.C. §1251 et seq.).

D.  “Combined Sewer” means a  sewer designed to convey both sanitary sewage and stormwater.

E.  “Director” means the Director of The Bureau of Environmental Services or the Director’s designee.

F.  “Discharge” means any disposal, injection, dumping, spilling, pumping, emitting, emptying, leaching, leaking, or placing of any material so that such material enters or is likely to enter a waterbody, groundwater, or a public sewer or drainage system.

G.  “Discharge Authorization (DA)” means a written approval by the Director which prescribes certain requirements or restrictions for a discharge to the City sewer and drainage system.

H.  “Discharger” means any person who causes or permits a direct or indirect discharge to the City’s sewer and drainage system.

I.  “Domestic Waste” means any waste consistent with that generated from single or multiple residential dwellings including, but not limited to, wastes from bathrooms, laundries and kitchens.

J.  “Domestic Wastewater” means any water that contains only domestic waste.

K.  “Hazardous Substance” means any substances referenced in section 101(14) of the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act of 1980 (42 U.S. Code §9601 et seq.), section 502(13) of the Clean Water Act or other substance at concentrations specified in those lists or, if no concentration is specified, at concentrations designated by the Director. 

L.  “Industrial User” means any person who discharges industrial or commercial wastewater to the City sewer system.

M.  “Industrial Wastewater” means any discharge resulting from, or used in connection with, any process of industry, manufacturing, commercial food processing, business, agriculture, trade or research. Industrial wastewater includes, but is not limited to, the development, recovery or processing of natural resources and leachate from landfills or other disposal sites.

N.  “Industrial Wastewater Discharge Permit” means a permit to discharge industrial wastewater into the City sewer system issued under Section 17.34.070 and which prescribes certain discharge requirements and limitations.

O.  “Interference” means a discharge that alone or in conjunction with other discharges, inhibits or disrupts the normal operation of the City sewer system or contributes to a violation of any requirement of the POTW’s NPDES permit. This includes any increase in the magnitude or duration of a violation, any increase in cost due to damage to the system, additional treatment of sewage, sewage sludge use or disposal, or in compliance with local, state or federal regulations or permits related to sewage treatment and sludge disposal.

P.  “National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES)” means the Clean Water Act (40 CFR Part 122) regulations that require dischargers to control and reduce pollutants in discharges to waters of the United States

Q.  “Pollutant” means an elemental or physical material that can be mobilized or dissolved by water or air and that could create a negative impact to human health, safety, or the environment.

R.  “POTW” means Publicly Owned Treatment Works, which includes any devices and systems, owned by a State or municipality, used in the collection, transportation, storage, treatment, recycling and reclamation of wastewater.

S.  “Pretreatment” means the reduction of the amount of pollutants, the elimination of pollutants, or the alteration of the nature of pollutant properties in wastewater in accordance with federal, state and local laws, regulations and permits prior to or in lieu of discharging or otherwise introducing such pollutants into the City sewer system.

T.  “Slugload” means any discharge that is non-routine or episodic and that has a reasonable potential to cause interference, pass-through, or violation of applicable local, state or federal regulations, including City local limits or conditions of the City’s NPDES permit.  Slugloads include but are not limited to accidental spills and non-customary batch discharges.

U.  “Toxic Substance” means any chemical listed in Oregon’s water quality standards for toxic pollutant tables in OAR, Division 340-041-0033; the CWA effluent guidelines list of toxic pollutants at 40 CFR 401.15; or the toxic chemical release reporting specific toxic chemical listings at 40 CFR 372.65 at concentrations specified in those lists or, if no concentration is specified, at concentrations designated by the Director.

V.  “Upset” means an exceptional incident in which a discharger temporarily is in a state of noncompliance with the applicable categorical pretreatment standards of this Chapter or associated rules. Upset must be due to factors beyond the reasonable control of the discharger and not caused by operational error, improperly designed treatment facilities, inadequate treatment facilities, lack of preventive maintenance, or careless or improper operation of treatment facilities.

W.  “Wastewater” means any non-domestic sewage flows including but not limited to washwaters, industrial wastewater, commercial discharges, and other nonstormwater discharges.