City of Albuquerque

Albuquerque Storm Water Quality Program

“Protection of our river and improving our storm water quality is of paramount interest and a priority to the City of Albuquerque and the citizens that we serve. As a result the City has applied for and received from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) a Phase I Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) Permit. It is through the MS4 permit that the City monitors the quality of the City’s storm water runoff to the Rio Grande.”

Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) Permit

“Protection of the Rio Grande and improving our storm water quality is of paramount importance to the City of Albuquerque and a priority for the citizens that we serve. As a result the City has applied for and received a Watershed Based Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) Permit.

The City of Albuquerque and its co-permittees are currently regulated by Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) National Pollutant Discharge and Elimination System (NPDES) through the Watershed Based MS4 Permit. The City and its co-permitees received their first permit in 2003. The first five-year permit expired at the end of November 2008, the second MS4 permit and was replaced by the Watershed Based MS4 Permit in December 2014.

Under the new permit there are fourteen (14) co-permitees. The EPA believes that a WBP permit approach is more beneficial when it comes to enhancing the water quality in the Middle Rio Grande Watershed.” Maintenance and Inspections

"Permittees are required to include maintenance activities, maintenance schedules, and schedules (e.g., stormwater drainage system maintenance and street sweeping) to be available upon request.

The frequency of inspections for facilities covered by the MSGP or Good Housekeeping SWPPs if facility specific and specified in each SWPPP. These inspections cover structural and non-structural stormwater controls for MS4 owned facilities. All City Employees conducting inspections will have a minimum credential of “qualified inspector.” The COA consider a “qualified inspector” to be knowledgeable in the principles and practices of eroion and sediment controls and pollution prevention, and to possess the skills to assess: conditions within the MS4 that could impact stormwater quality; and the effectiveness of any stormwater controls selected and installed to meet the requirements of the Permit. Members of the Stormwater Team that conduct inspections are qualified inspectors."

Minimum-Control Measures

“The City's MS4 permit has requirements that fall within six (6) Minimum Control Measures (MCMs) that must be described and implemented in a Stormwater Management Program (SWMP). These are:

  1. Public Education and Outreach on Storm Water Impacts: Intended to educate the public of the potential for pollution and the benefits of improving the water quality in the Rio Grande.
  2. Public Involvement/Participation: Intended to identify various opportunities for the public to get involved in improving the water quality in the Rio Grande.
  3. Illicit Discharge Detection and Elimination: Program to find and eliminate non-storm water discharges that are sources of pollution that are harmful to the Rio Grande habitat.
  4. Construction Site Storm Water Runoff Control/ Industrial & High Risk Runoff Management: Monitor and minimize the release of pollutants, sediment, trash, and debris from construction sites during construction activities.
  5. Post-Construction Storm Water Management in New Development and Redevelopment including the implementation of Low Impact Development (LID) practices: Implement LID practices in an effort to reduce the amount of storm water runoff that can leave a site and enter the City's storm drainage system.
  6. Pollution Prevention/Good Housekeeping for Municipal Operations: Program to ensure that City facilities storm water controls/Best Management Practices (BMPs) are maintained and inspected on a regular basis. In addition, this program provides training to City employees on the best practices for daily maintenance and operations activities to minimize the introduction of various pollutants into the City's storm drain system.”


City of Albuquerque Storm Water Management Program (SWMP) 2016

MS4 Permit Information