As a precautionary response to COVID-19, Ohio EPA is currently operating with most staff working remotely. If you are working with our staff on a current project and you know the name of the employee you are working with, email them at firstname.lastname@epa.ohio.gov or call them directly. The Agency website has contact information for every district, division, and office. To report a spill or environmental emergency, contact the spill hotline (800) 282-9378 or (614) 224-0946. This number should only be used for emergencies. For all other calls, please contact Ohio EPA’s main phone line at (614) 644-3020 or the main line for the division or office you are trying to reach.

After March 23, our district offices and Central Office will be temporarily closed and will have increasingly limited ability to receive deliveries, plans, etc. All entities are encouraged to submit plans, permit applications, etc., electronically where there are existing avenues to do so, such as the eBusiness Center (eBiz). Please refer to the list of available services on the main eBiz webpage. We encourage you to make use of all that apply, even if you have not used eBiz in the past. Plans under 25 MB can be emailed. For large plans over 25 MB, entities should work with the reviewer/division to upload via LiquidFiles. Directions for submitting docs via LiquidFiles is available on YouTube. We apologize for the inconvenience and thank you in advance for your understanding. If you wish to send hard copies of documents to any of Ohio EPA’s district offices, the best method to ensure we receive these documents is to send them via U.S. Mail. Since all offices are closed, deliveries outside of U.S. Mail (FedEx, UPS) will likely be returned because the offices are closed and deliveries cannot be made.



7/23/14
PUBLIC INTEREST CENTER, (614) 644-2160
MEDIA CONTACT: Dina Pierce
CITIZEN CONTACT: Darla Peelle

Ohio EPA Director’s Western Basin Stops Highlight Efforts to Address Lake Erie Nutrient, Bacteria Issues

Ohio EPA Director Craig W. Butler is visiting sites and meeting with local officials in Toledo and Oregon today to get an update on local projects and emphasize Ohio’s focus on improving and protecting Lake Erie.

“Lake Erie is one of Ohio’s most important natural and economic assets. Protecting it is critically important for our future generations,” Director Butler said.

Director Butler and his team first stopped in Toledo to tour the Bay View Wastewater Treatment Plant and discuss the city’s ongoing Toledo Waterways Initiative. They also visited the Oakdale Miami storage basin construction site.

The city already has eliminated untreated sewage overflows from the wastewater treatment plant. With the addition of the Oakdale Miami storage basin and similar projects, the city will gradually eliminate sewage overflows into local streams and Lake Erie, where they contribute to bacteria and nutrient issues. The city is more than halfway through the 18-year project, a portion of which is being funded through low-interest loans from Ohio EPA. The loan assistance from Ohio EPA is projected to save the city about $35.6 million in interest payments versus market rate loans.

In Oregon, the city’s water treatment plant was featured. The city upgraded its lab to process samples for microcystin, a type of toxin that can be produced by blue-green algae. Ohio EPA will sample public water systems for microcystins in response to a bloom event, but Oregon and several other Lake Erie water systems have taken the initiative to voluntarily sample for them. Oregon now processes its own microcystin samples as well as those for several other area water systems in an effort to ensure area drinking water quality.

Ohio EPA has developed a proactive harmful algal bloom response strategy for public water systems and updates the document annually. The 2014 draft response strategy calls for voluntary weekly sampling for microcystin and more frequent sampling if microcystin is detected above 5 parts per billion in a water system’s untreated water.

Also while in Oregon, the group looked at a section of a larger project to improve stream quality in Wolf Creek, which runs through Oregon municipal property and eventually drains near Maumee Bay State Park. The city, with funding from a federal-state grant, is redesigning the parking areas and storm drainage swales to slow and filter runoff, reducing nutrients, bacteria and sedimentation in the creek.

“Ohio EPA is glad to partner with these communities. They deserve credit for taking ownership of their water resources and working to improve and protect them,” Director Butler said.

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The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency was created in 1972 to consolidate efforts to protect and improve air quality, water quality and waste management in Ohio. Since then, air pollutants dropped by as much as 90 percent; large rivers meeting standards improved from 21 percent to 89 percent; and hundreds of polluting, open dumps were replaced with engineered landfills and an increased emphasis on waste reduction and recycling.

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