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Michigan Guide to Environmental Regulations

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Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy

Michigan Guide to Environmental Regulations

The Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE) has written the Michigan Guide to Environmental Regulations to assist Michigan's business, industry, and local governments in navigating the maze of environmental obligations they face. This guidebook is a ready-reference tool for anyone striving toward compliance with state and federal regulations that affect businesses and institutions. Although some reference is made to local regulations, they are not discussed in detail. Contact your local government officials for information on applicable local requirements.

This guidebook describes how wastes may enter the environment, how to prevent them from doing so, and which remediation methods to use if contamination does occur. Some of the most common concerns, along with applicable solutions, are described in the chapters below.  Topics include discharge of air pollutants; disposal of solid, liquid, and hazardous waste; discharges of wastewater to municipal sewage systems, storm drains, and on- site septic systems; storage of materials; and discharges/releases on the land or into lakes and streams.

How to Use This Guidebook

This guidebook is designed to answer questions regarding various regulations and furnish relevant, supplemental information. Although it may appear intimidating due to its size and the number of topics covered, you will find it quite easy to use.  Each chapter targets a specific regulatory program.  By completing the "Facility-Assessment Survey," you can create a personal checklist of the pages of the guide that are relevant to your business.


The chapters of the guidebook are subdivided into four distinct parts: 

  1. Purpose and Applicability of Regulations:  This part contains an overview of the type of activity that is regulated and the ultimate goal of compliance. 

  2. Agencies and Their Laws and Rules:  Here we cite all of the state and federal statutes and rules related to the particular regulatory program. Some guide owners will find it necessary to obtain actual copies of the regulations cited in this part of the chapter to further their understanding of the requirements. Appendix D gives a more detailed discussion of state and federal statutes and rules, how they are cited, and where you can find them on the Internet.

  3. Regulation abstracts:  This part will highlight major components of the regulation and give readers an indication of whether or not the regulation is applicable to their manufacturing facility. When applicable, most regulations require a manufacturer to perform one or more of the following activities: modify or install equipment, maintain records, train employees, file reports, perform routine maintenance and monitoring, or develop a written plan.

  4. Where to Go for Help:  The "Where to Go for Help" section identifies which state and federal agencies and other sources you can contact for additional information about the stated subject.  Whenever possible, the phone number, Web site, and list of useful publications associated with the agency or resource are listed. Traditionally, resource information such as this gets placed in an appendix at the back of the book. Because of its importance and value, we placed it at the end of each chapter.

The Michigan Guide to Environmental Regulations is intended for guidance only and may be impacted by changes in legislation, rules, and regulations adopted after the date of publication. The suggestions given for identifying and implementing pollution prevention opportunities are not to be used as a substitute for applicable codes, rules, and regulations that impact businesses. Although the guidebook makes every effort to teach users how to meet applicable compliance obligations, use of this guidebook does not constitute the rendering of legal advice. Diligent attention was given to assure that the information presented herein is accurate as of the date of publication; however, there is no guarantee, expressed or implied, that use of this guidebook will satisfy all regulatory requirements mandated by laws and their respective enforcement agencies. Reliance on information from this document is not usable as a defense in any enforcement action or litigation. The state of Michigan shall be held harmless for any cause of action brought on as a result of using of this publication.