The Dilemma of Disinfection: Updates

Photo: USACE/Jessica Vandrick

There are no updates to report yet. Keep your eye on this page, though — the Illinois Pollution Control Board (IPCB) should release their decision about disinfection in the coming months.

For More Information

For copies of the Illinois EPA’s original proposal, as well as information and testimony from the first two and a half years of the rulemaking, visit the original rulemaking website. All the expert testimonies, hearing transcripts, and studies entered into evidence are available online from the IPCB. Since the IPCB split the rulemaking into four subdockets, however, finding what you’re looking for can be a little tricky. Note that some documents are posted to multiple subdockets if they are relevant to more than one.

Subdocket A dealt with recreational use designations—that is, what types of recreation ought to be protected—for the different reaches of the CAWS. This docket was closed in March 2010, and the IPCB released its decision regarding recreational use designations in August.

Subdocket B concerns whether or not disinfection of wastewater effluent is necessary in order to protect the types of recreation deemed attainable by the ICPB’s new recreational use designations. This subdocket closed in February 2011, and a decision should be forthcoming in the near future.

Subdockets C and D don’t relate to disinfection. This half of the rulemaking concerns water quality measures necessary to protect aquatic life. The Illinois EPA’s proposal contains new rules governing levels of dissolved oxygen, temperature, and several chemical pollutants. Subdocket C will designate the different reaches of the CAWS according to their potential to support aquatic communities; once these designations have been made, Subdocket D will establish specific criteria to protect the communities in each designated reach. Hearings are currently underway on Subdocket C.