ARA Home > Regulations > Stormwater

Get state-specific stormwater rules
at the
ECAR Center

The automotive recycling industry contributes to the quality of our environment by recycling automotive parts, thereby conserving natural resources and reducing waste disposal needs. The automotive recycling industry has taken important steps to prevent stormwater pollution and meet applicable stormwater permit regulations. Pollution prevention is an ongoing process that needs to be continually reviewed and refined to achieve the best, most efficient results. Facilities should begin with simple, inexpensive Best Management Practices (BMPs), and then, if necessary, move on to more comprehensive and sophisticated BMPs where appropriate to control specific pollution sources.

BMPs for the automotive recycling industry should meet the following criteria:

  1. Effective - BMPs should control the specific pollutants of concern at the facility. At many recycling facilities, the pollutants of greatest concern are sediment (total suspended solids) -- especially in unpaved yards, automobile fluids (fuel, antifreeze, hydraulic fluid, and transmission fluid), and metals (lead, iron, and aluminum). To select effective BMPs, facilities should have a thorough understanding of the major sources of these pollutants
  2. Economically Feasible - BMPs selected for a facility should have reasonable initial construction costs and long-term operation and maintenance costs. The costs should commensurate with the benefits provided by the BMP
  3. Practical - BMPs should not interfere with the dismantling or recycling operations. They should be compatible with the facility's site layout and drainage configuration. With appropriate training and education, employees should be able to properly carry out the BMPs.
    BMP Selection

It is recommended that automotive recycling facilities adopt, as standard practice, a set of "core" BMPs that are practical and inexpensive. These core BMPs, which should be implemented where they are applicable for a given facility, will control many of the most common pollution sources. In addition, many of these BMPs will also help create a professional, clean, and well-run business environment. Thirty recommended core BMPs are presented in Table 1, along with a summary of the benefits of each BMP.

Additional BMPs should be selected when, and only if, there are additional pollution sources that are not controlled by the core BMPs, or when a higher level of pollution reduction is required to meet water quality standards in the receiving lake or stream. These additional BMPs can be selected from the BMP matrix in the Automotive Recyclers Association's Stormwater Guidance Manual , which was prepared in 1996 to assist automotive recycling facilities comply with stormwater permit regulations. Other references may also be consulted.




Good Housekeeping

1. Develop a stormwater management policy statement for your employees. Management can provide direction and support for pollution prevention by reviewing this policy with employees and keeping it posted. Demonstrates company's commitment to maintaining an environmentally sound workplace. Encourages support of employees, suppliers, and customers. Establishes a pro-active approach with regulators. Employees should be properly trained and educated about the policy statement to effectively help implement needed actions to reduce stormwater pollution.
2. An incoming vehicle inspection inventory program should include a check for fluid leaks and for unwanted material that could have been placed in the vehicles. Allows facility to contain and properly dispose of leaking fluids as soon as the vehicle enters the property. Reduces the incidence of unwanted material such as solvents, chemicals, and leaking batteries. Minimizes risk to human health and the environment and reduces the liability for future site clean up work.
3. Clean up debris and trash on a regular basis. Reduces exposure of materials (trash, debris) to stormwater. Improves aesthetics and presents image of a well-run facility.

Vehicle Dismantling Fluid Management

4. Remove fluids from vehicles brought into the facility for processing or dismantling as soon as feasible. Minimizes leaking fluids. Prevents discharge of fluids to stormwater, groundwater, and the soil.
5. Keep used oil separate from parts cleaning solvents, antifreeze, and fuel. Allows fluids to be recycled and reused. Reduces disposal costs.

Note : Check with your fluid recycler for specific guidance regarding mixed fluids.

6. Label storage containers of all fluids and waste materials. Prevents accidental mixture of fluids. Facilitates fluid recycling. Helps employees and emergency personnel respond appropriately in the event of a major spill. Encourages proper care and handling.
7. Drain all parts of fluids prior to disposal. Reduces leakage and spillage of fluids from the parts while they are stored onsite or being transported.
8. Engine oil should be drained and stored in clearly labeled tanks or containers. Tanks and contai


Membership Software By: