Industrial Pretreatment Program

Pretreatment & Why It Is Important

Contained within the ordinances (laws) of the City is a document referred to as the Sewer Use Ordinance. The Sewer Use Ordinance, Article V, Chapter 22, contains the rules and regulations which protect our sanitary sewer collection system and the wastewater treatment facility, collectively referred to as the Publicly Owned Treatment Works (POTW). The rules address:

  • Flow Volumes
  • Organic Loadings
  • Temperature
  • Toxins

Many other possible potential pollutants which may be present in wastewater, and set local limits based on local, state and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) standards are also addressed.

Commercial & Industrial Contributors

In addition to the City's domestic customers, the City has commercial and industrial contributors connected to our system. Because most wastewater treatment plants are designed primarily to treat domestic sources of wastewater, industrial sources of wastewater that have the potential to impact the POTW must be permitted under the City of Clinton Industrial Pretreatment Program as Significant Industrial Users. To control pollutants, permitted industrial users may be required to pretreat their wastewater prior to discharge to sewer using chemical, or physical/mechanical methods. Through pretreatment, the industrial wastewater customer is able to reduce, eliminate, or alter a pollutant before it is introduced into the POTW.

Clinton's Pretreatment Program is an EPA federally-mandated program under the administration of the State of North Carolina Pretreatment Emergency Response and Collection Systems (PERCS) Unit with the City of Clinton as the Control Authority. Accordingly, the City of Clinton is required by DWR PERCS to monitor these industrial users closely. The City of Clinton currently has four Significant Industrial Users who, in combination, represent over 60% of our average daily flow and greater than 85% of our average daily organic loading.


The overall objectives of the Industrial Pretreatment Program are to:

  • Prevent interference with POTW operations
  • Prevent contamination of the POTW's biosolids
  • Prevent pass-through of pollutants to the POTW's receiving stream
  • Prevent exposure of POTW workers to chemical hazards

Permitting Information

All potential commercial or industrial users of the City of Clinton POTW must complete an Industrial Waste Survey prior to acceptance of wastewater discharge to the POTW. Additionally, every 5 years the City conducts a full Industrial Waste Survey on all commercial and industrial users of the POTW. Upon completion of the Industrial Waste Survey (PDF), it must be submitted to the City's Environmental Programs Manager (EPM) per the instructions included in the document. The EPM will then make and initial assessment of potential Significant Industrial User Status.


Potential Significant Industrial Users (SIU) of the City of Clinton POTW must further complete an Industrial User Permit Application (PDF) and obtain an Industrial User Permit containing effluent limitations and monitoring requirements prior to discharge of wastewater to the City's POTW. Potential SIUs may also be required to conduct preliminary pollutant monitoring of process waters, representative waste streams, etc. in order to complete the permitting process.

Please note that completion of an Industrial Waste Survey and/or an Industrial User Permit Application in no way guarantees that a potential industry will be permitted to discharge to the POTW. Permitting is dependent on many factors, including, but not limited to, flow volume, pollutant load, allocation availability for the wastewater plant, and the overall potential of the industry to impact the POTW.

Additional Information

Please contact the City's Environmental Programs Manager Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. for additional information on SIUs and Industrial User Permits:
Lisa Osthues
Phone: 910-299-4912
Email Lisa Osthues