Protecting Public Health and the Environment.

Environmental Assistance for Electroplating and Anodizing Operations

Electroplating and anodizing operations in Idaho are impacted by various environmental regulations based on the specific processes operated.

Air Quality Regulations

Electroplating and anodizing operations can potentially emit pollutants into the atmosphere and therefore may be regulated by state and federal regulations. Operations may require an air quality permit to construct, which is required prior to construction or modification of buildings, structures, and installations that emit, or may emit, pollutants into the air.

Businesses that use chromium electroplating and anodizing tanks are regulated by the federal National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants (NESHAPs). Facilities subject to the NESHAPs may also be required to obtain an air quality permit.

Hazardous Waste Regulations

Electroplating and anodizing facilities typically generate hazardous waste and therefore must comply with federal Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA), which is administered by DEQ. Under RCRA, facilities that generate hazardous waste are required to follow specific practices and procedures associated with the safe management of hazardous waste. The type and number of requirements that must be complied with is based on the quantity and type of waste generated.

Water Quality Regulations

Electroplating and anodizing facilities can have an impact on Idaho's surface and ground waters and may be subject to federal water quality standards and the National Pollutant Elimination Discharge System (NPDES) program. Under this program, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulates the discharge of pollutants into any water body of the U.S., including storm water sewer systems. Depending on the activities and services provided, an electroplating and anodizing facility may need its own NPDES general permit for direct or indirect discharge. If the facility is located within a city that has an NPDES permit, it may be subject to the city's pretreatment and storm water requirements.