Stormwater Simplified.
Maryland’s new industrial stormwater permit, the 20-SW, has been released.
Contact us today to ensure your facility is taking all necessary steps to remain in compliance with these new regulations.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is stormwater?

Stormwater is the name given to all water that originates during a precipitation event like rain or snow.

What is stormwater pollution?

Stormwater pollution is when stormwater runoff picks up contaminants (such oil or pieces of trash) before entering waterways and groundwater sources. Polluted runoff like this is the number one cause of water pollution in the United States.

Why does stormwater pollution matter?

Polluted water is dangerous and can hurt local communities in ways both obvious and subtle.

For businesses, these issues are important because there are regulations which govern how stormwater runoff is discharged at any given facility.

What are Maryland’s stormwater regulations?

In Maryland, the Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE) works with the EPA to monitor and regulate stormwater pollution. MDE has a number of different permits which cover a range of different businesses.

The three “general discharge” permits we work with most often are the 12-SW “industrial” stormwater permit, the 15-MM “mineral mines” permit, and the 16-MA “marina” permit. For more information on these permits and the categories of businesses they apply to, please click here.

Tell me a little about these permits.

All of Maryland’s stormwater discharge permits have several features in common, including in how you apply for and gain coverage under them. If you need a permit, you’ll first have to write a stormwater pollution prevention plan (or “SWPPP”) and submit it for MDE approval along with a Notice of Intent and a permit fee.

After you've received your permit, you must keep up with its ongoing requirements to maintain your compliance. These requirements include conducting regular internal inspections, monitoring water quality via visual monitoring and laboratory testing, and providing annual staff training on stormwater management practices and procedures.

Seems like these permits involve a lot of work - does my business need one?

Check out the list of industries we serve to see if you fall under one of those categories. Or give us a call - we can give you a quick answer.

What happens to my business if I need a permit but don’t get one?

Operating without a permit puts you in a risky position - you’re “out of compliance” by default. You may get a letter requesting that you acquire a permit or be subject to an announced inspection from an MDE official. And once you’re on MDE’s radar, you’ll be under significant pressure to quickly get permit coverage and to avoid potential penalties.

My business has a stormwater permit, but we haven’t kept up with the ongoing compliance work (inspections, lab testing, etc.) you mentioned before.

If you haven’t kept up with the permit’s requirements, you’ll also be considered out of compliance and be just as vulnerable to potential enforcement issues as a facility with no permit coverage.

So how can Grapewell help me?

Grapewell works with businesses in Maryland on every aspect of stormwater permitting and compliance.

If you don’t yet have a permit but need one, we can prepare a custom stormwater pollution prevention plan for your facility and help you gain coverage. Once you have a permit, we have products and services to make your compliance work simple and straightforward, from water testing services and routine documentation assistance to annual comprehensive inspections and stormwater control design.

Can’t I just do all this myself?

Absolutely. But keeping up with Maryland’s stormwater regulations can be time-consuming, confusing, and intimidating.

Our clients are busy, hardworking people who value the time, money, and headache they save by working with a team of dedicated, local experts.

So why Grapewell and not some other consultant?

Maryland stormwater is our business.

Because of our unique origins, Grapewell has always prioritized the things that make us special. We’re 100% local to Maryland, focused entirely on stormwater, and dedicated to giving all of our clients the best service possible.

Grapewell’s products and services - from our permit acquisition services to our sampling offerings and comprehensive compliance packages - have always and will always be designed for our core clientele of small business owners. We are proud to provide them with best-in-class technical service; friendly and attentive support; and fair, consistent pricing.

I’m intrigued. How can I get in touch with someone at Grapewell?

Our complete set of contact information is available here. We look forward to hearing from you and developing a stormwater management solution that meets your needs.