The Wastewater Engineering Program within the Department of Environmental Quality administers the Sewage Collection and Treatment Regulations (9 VAC 25-790), authorized under the Code of Virginia 1950, as amended, Title 62.1, Section 62.1-44.19. The regulatory services provided by the Wastewater Engineering Program are provided to the citizens of the Commonwealth to ensure that environmental resources are not endangered due to improper management of sewage collection and treatment. The Department of Environmental Quality is under the Secretary of Natural Resources.
The Wastewater Engineering Program provides technical evaluation of proposals, reports, plans and specifications submitted in support of permits to construct and operate sewage collection and treatment facilities. In addition, technical assistance is provided to owners and their consultants to develop the most efficient technology that can be reasonably operated to provide reliable performance in compliance with permit requirements. The engineers conduct and coordinate training on sanitary engineering and new technologies. The Wastewater Engineering Program administers the Sewage Collection and Treatment Regulations which cover domestic sewage only. Industrial waste is not covered by this office unless the treatment plant receives over ten percent domestic sewage flows.
The DEQ Wastewater Engineering Program previously had "area engineers" that performed technical evaluations of engineering documents for municipal wastewater (or sewage) treatment works and systems, and provided other related technical services. In 2008, the Wastewater Engineering Program was substantially scaled back. Subsequently, DEQ area contacts for wastewater engineering were eliminated and procedures to issue Certificates to Construct and Certificates to Operate for many wastewater treatment construction projects were abbreviated. Refer to Regulations and Certificates for more information about the current procedures to approve municipal wastewater treatment works and systems.