Sewer System Use Protocol

Non-Standard Discharge Form

Go to Non-Standard Discharge Form.

Purpose and Scope

This protocol applies to any activity or operation on the main campus that discharges wastewater to the UMass Amherst (UMA) sewer lines and, subsequently, the Amherst Publicly Owned Treatment Works (POTW). Included in this protocol is any operation or activity undertaken by UMA personnel, UMA contractors, and contractors working on University of Massachusetts Building Authority (UMBA) or Division of Capital and Asset Management (DCAM) construction projects.

Standard Discharge

A standard discharge has been historically in service and/or conducted on the main campus and is considered an element of an operation or activity that occurs as a result of design and/or engineering or regular maintenance and has a corresponding volume that will not negatively impact the Town of Amherst POTW. The University considers the following standard discharges: 

  1. Boiler Blowdown
  2. Steam System Discharge
  3. Cooling Tower Blowdown
  4. Building Heating System Discharges
  5. Building Cooling System Discharges
  6. Charging Steam Lines Already In Service
  7. Swimming Pools
  8. Hockey Rink Ice-Melt
  9. Oil Water Separators
  10. Bus Wash (PVTA)
  11. Effluent RO Discharges
  12. Building RO Waste Systems
  13. Discharges less than 1,000 gallons that would not negatively impact the Amherst POTW

Non-Standard Discharge*

A non-standard discharge includes any discharge associated with an activity or operation not listed as a standard discharge or one that is greater than 1,000 gallons. The University considers the following non-standard discharges:

  1. Any activity not listed in the Standard Discharge Classification
  2. Manually Controlled Discharges
  3. Construction Activities (e.g., Hydro-Static Testing, System Flush, Power Washing)
  4. Discharges greater than 1,000 gallons (any volume if constituents could negatively impact the Amherst POTW)

*Discharge of a Non-Standard Discharge requires prior approval from the Amherst POTW and coordination among a number of departments on the UMA campus.

If there is uncertainty as to how to classify a discharge, please contact Terri Wolejko, Assistant Director, Environmental and Hazardous Materials Management Services at: 577-3632, or Dennis Gagnon, Environmental Health and Safety Power Plant Manager at: 545-5119, for assistance.


  • At no time is it acceptable to discharge into a storm sewer anything other than uncontaminated water from a storm event.
  • An activity or operation with a discharge that falls within the Standard Discharge Classification is not affected by this protocol.
  • An activity or operation with a discharge that falls within the Non-Standard Discharge Classification must follow the remainder of this protocol to ensure that the Amherst POTW is not adversely affected and/or that the discharge is managed and treated appropriately.

Non-Standard Discharges

  • An electronic copy of the Non-Standard Discharge form is at the top of this page and can also be found on the UMass Physical Plant web page. Completed forms should be sent to:
  1. Gary Ritter - Environmental Health and Safety Power Plant Manager at:
  2. Terri Wolejko – Assistant Director, Environmental and Hazardous Materials Management Services at: To minimize a disruption to the project’s timeline, the form must be submitted seven business days in advance of the anticipated discharge date.
  • A non-standard discharge shall occur during normal business hours, or between 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 pm. Exceptions will be considered on a case-by-case basis.
  • An SDS must be submitted for each chemical included in the discharge.
  • EH&S or Utilities will contact the Amherst POTW and inform them of the need to discharge a Non-Standard Discharge. The information provided on the submitted form will be reviewed by Amherst POTW with the UMass representative.
  • The Amherst POTW will consider the request and respond within a timely fashion.  Approval may be granted or denied, with or without caveats. The UMass representative will contact the POC listed on the form to inform him/her of the decision.
  • Request approved with or without conditions.
  • If the approval includes no conditions, the discharge can commence accordingly. Contact EH&S and Utilities to confirm the discharge date(s) and duration.
  • If there are conditions, UMA or the contractor will adopt and initiate the requirements prior to discharging. UMA or the contractor can weigh the cost implications of adopting these measures against the cost of off-site disposal. Inform EH&S and Utilities of the chosen course of action.
  • If discharge to the Amherst POTW is not allowed, the wastewater must be shipped off-site and treated appropriately.
  • Contact EH&S to coordinate this effort with a pre-approved vendor. UMBA and DCAM contractors can contact EH&S for vendor recommendations.
  • All disposal and treatment records must be forwarded to the Environmental and Hazardous Materials Services Manager for retention.