Wisconsin is one of the first states in the country to adopt a numerical water quality criteria for phosphorous in surface waters.
This development has created some challenges as well as opportunities for clients. We have represented a number of municipal and private dischargers in developing strategies for compliance with stringent water quality based effluent limits for phosphorous including challenging permits where necessary. In addition, we have represented parties in structuring strategies for trades of phosphorous credits to dischargers under the new Wisconsin phosphorous programs. In fact, we represented a cheese company in the first successful phosphorous trade in Wisconsin.
Notably, a member of our Practice Group has been appointed to DNR’s Phosphorous Advisory Committee. This committee is tasked with developing new phosphorous rules in Wisconsin. In addition we represented a cheese manufacturer with first successful phosphorous trade in the State of Wisconsin.
Godfrey & Kahn Updates
Godfrey & Kahn worked with Baker Cheese to successfully implement the first water quality trade under Wisconsin’s new stringent phosphorus standards for its wastewater treatment plant through the development of a unique Water Quality Trade Agreement and Water Quality Trading Plan. Under this agreement and plan, Baker implemented a prairie restoration on three farm fields in order to generate phosphorus credits. This unique trade agreement allows Baker to save significantly on both the capital and operating costs while reducing phosphorus emissions significantly compared to treatment alone.
Water Quality Related Effluent Limits
Godfrey & Kahn represents four publically owned treatment facilities in challenges to the terms and condition contained in their respective WPDES permits. In particular, these permit matters involve challenges to the stringent water quality related effluent limits for phosphorus along with challenged to the timelines for compliance which accompany these permits.