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Cooling Water Intake Structures

Brief description of the federal cooling water intake structure rule and implementation activities.

New InformationHot Topic316(b) Rule Update Announcement

TCEQ has scheduled a stakeholder meeting to discuss and obtain feedback from stakeholders regarding implementation of the federal Clean Water Act Section 316(b) Cooling Water Intake Impingement and Entrainment (CWIE) rule for Phase II (existing) facilities. The meeting is scheduled for Thursday, September 10, 2015 at the TCEQ offices in Austin TX in Building F, Room 2210 beginning at 1:30 PMM

CWIS Stakeholder Documents:

About the Rule:

    • The rule was effective October 14, 2014
    • Applicability:
        • Point source regulated by a National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System permit
        • Cumulative (1 or more cooling water intake structures) capacity with a design intake flow of greater than 2 million gallons per day withdrawn from waters of the United States
        • Greater than or equal to 25% of water the facility withdraws on an actual intake flow basis is used exclusively for cooling water purposes
        • Additional facilities that do not fit into the two aforementioned bullets may be subject to BPJ requirements established by the Executive Director
      • Impingement Mortality: death of aquatic organisms by being “stuck” on intake screen faces
        • Compliance – determined via selection of one or more technologies provided in the rule, or a statistical demonstration of reduction
        • Compliance with impingement mortality standards does not exempt facilities from compliance with entrainment mortality standards
      • Entrainment Mortality- death of aquatic organisms by being pulled through the cooling components of the cooling system
        • Best Technology Available for minimizing entrainment mortality will be evaluated based upon five factors as outlined in the rule:
          • Numbers and types of entrained organisms
          • Impact of changes in particulate emissions or other pollutants
          • Land availability
          • Remaining plant life, and,
          • Quantified and qualitative social benefits and costs of control



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