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For the first time in Sacramento County, the Regional County Sanitation District required a hospital complex to be permitted as an industrial discharger. The University of California at Davis Medical Center (UCDMC) became subject to this unusual requirement in 1997 and had to develop an innovative permitting approach due to the unique campus-type facility it owns and operates, distinguishing it from typical industrial facilities. The initial permit became effective in September 1998 and was recently modified in December 1999.

The unique permitting approach involved cost-effective water usage calculations and representative sewer sampling that the County plans on using as a model for permitting of hospitals or other campus-type dischargers in the future. Specifically, the permitting approach consisted of the following features:

Avoiding the cost of wastewater discharge flow metering at 16 sewer discharge points on campus.

Saving the UCDMC 4,000 per year in reduced sewer fees by documenting reduced discharge flows caused by on-plant consumptive water uses.

Reducing wastewater discharge sampling and analysis costs by 30,000 by employing a “weighted average” representative sampling program.

Saving the UCDMC over 100,000 in “connection fees” by demonstrating water saving design features and practices employed on campus.

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: 2000-01-01

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