Water Quality Compliance
The Office of Water Quality Compliance staff are perhaps the most visible to the public, with employees performing compliance inspections at municipal wastewater treatment plants, construction and industrial sites, animal waste facilities such as hog farms and chicken operations, and oil and gas drilling sites.
Inspectors routinely investigate complaints from the public, whether they're responding to spills at industrial sites or investigating fish kills.
District area inspectors have multifaceted job duties that include the following:
- Permit compliance evaluation inspections for facilities with National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permits. These facilities have discharges to surface water and include primarily municipal wastewater treatment plants and industries that discharge process wastewater.
- Stormwater inspections that address stormwater runoff from construction and industrial sites.
- Permit compliance inspections for subsurface or no-discharge facilities permitted by DEQ. Such inspections include septic tank systems, animal waste facilities, and deep-well brine injection at oil and gas production fields.
- Investigating citizens' complaints.
- Responding to spills of materials from industries, transportation systems, and municipalities to assure protection of the environment.
- Investigating fish kills related to environmental causes.
- Collecting routine water samples from a network of sampling stations to monitor ambient water quality of the waters of Arkansas.
In addition some inspectors are assigned to territories that have oil and gas facilities.