NEPA Compliance for Sewer Infrastructure

JMT provided planning and environmental services to improve the execution of DC Water projects in compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act.


Washington, DC


DC Water and Sewer Authority

JMT worked with the District of Columbia Water and Sewer Authority (DC Water) as part of a joint venture to provide design and environmental services for projects requiring compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). These projects also required program management and the implementation of program controls.

As part of its capital improvements program, DC Water sought to repair, rehabilitate, and replace defective sewer infrastructure to reduce the potential for sanitary sewer overflow. Some tasks included repairing municipal separate storm sewer system (MS4) outfalls that contributed to water-quality degradation, as required by the District of Columbia’s National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System, MS4 permit.

As many of these improvements involved federal property, JMT provided NEPA services, including delineating natural resources (e.g., wetlands), applying for special use permits from the National Park Service (NPS), coordinating Section 106 efforts with the NPS and District of Columbia Historic Preservation Office, and preparing an environmental assessment. JMT also provided public and agency scoping and archaeological monitoring during construction.

JMT’s engineering and environmental services included assessing and inspecting sewer infrastructure, preparing sewer repairs, design alternatives, and preparing design submittals. We developed geomorphic stream-reach assessments in areas of exposed sewer assets and created stream stabilization designs to provide long-term protection of sewer infrastructure.

We developed a NEPA communications plan to help DC Water staff implement agency coordination and public involvement for projects requiring NEPA compliance, with a focus on preparing environmental assessments and environmental impact statement documents. The team identified and obtained required environmental permits and made recommendations to assist in the planning and execution of projects requiring NEPA compliance to facilitate effective delivery and efficient use of resources. JMT advised on additional requirements, timeframes, and processes and integrated these timeframes into project schedules. We assisted the client in planning public outreach meetings for sewer improvement projects and developing innovative design concepts for stream stabilization projects to address the need for long-term protection of exposed sewer assets.

JMT provided program controls to meet project requirements and assist with navigating the NEPA process during all phases of project delivery. The team conducted a three-day NEPA training course for DC Water staff and developed internal guidance documents, project work plans, and project quality plans to outline and identify procedures.