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Wastewater survey coming to 20,000 businesses in March

Summary

Area businesses of all types and sizes should watch for a mailer from King County’s Wastewater Treatment Division in early March. The County is asking 20,000 companies to complete a survey about the wastewater they generate and send to the regional sewer system each day. Responses will support King County’s efforts to protect regional water quality and comply with federal requirements.

Story

To support efforts to protect regional water quality, King County’s Wastewater Treatment Division is asking area businesses to complete a survey about the wastewater they generate and send to the regional sewer system each day.

Information about the survey will be mailed in early March to 20,000 area companies of all types and sizes within King County’s 424-square-mile wastewater service area.

“In addition to creating jobs and a vibrant economy, the local business community has long been committed to environmental stewardship,” said King County Wastewater Treatment Division Pam Elardo. “The survey is another way we can keep working together to help everyone do their part to prevent water pollution.”

Though every company must properly dispose of wastewater, only some businesses need permits or formal authorization to send industrial wastewater to the sewer system. Improper disposal of wastewater could damage the treatment system, kill marine life or harm sewer utility workers.

The survey results will help King County better understand which companies may need to monitor or pretreat wastewater before discharging it to the sewer system.

King County is required by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Washington State Department of Ecology to conduct the survey, and all businesses are required to respond to document their use of the sanitary sewer, even if they only have restrooms or break rooms on site.

The survey completion deadline is March 28, 2016. Companies that respond before the deadline could avoid unnecessary follow up and inspections. 

Since 1969, King County’s Industrial Waste Program has required industrial facilities to pretreat wastewater before discharging it into the sewer to protect the regional treatment system and its workers as well as the environment and public health.

For more information about the King County Industrial Waste Program, visit www.kingcounty.gov/industrialwaste.

Additional information about the survey is available online, or by contacting King County’s Wastewater Treatment Division at 206-477-5371 or 711 TTY.