Bohemia Mine Owners Association Inc.

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OREGON DEQ SUCTION DREDGING INFORMATION FOR 2020
Fees and permit coverage's

The following was information taken from epa.gov/tmdl/willamette-basin-mercury-tmdl as of 04.06.2020

The Oregon DEQ webpage provides information and resources to anyone intending to conduct metal mining operations in Oregon?s streams or rivers. DEQ's fact sheet, Water Quality Permits for Metal Mining Activities, describes all water quality permits required for metal mining/prospecting and ore processing operations that discharge wastewater to the land and state waters on private or public land. This fact sheet includes contact information for local, state and federal agencies in Oregon that may also have requirements related to mining.

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700-PM General Permit Renewal

The public comment period on the 700-PM National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System water quality general permit renewal is closed.

This permit renewal includes a revised format using Schedules A through F, requirements for electronic reporting when directed by DEQ, updates to conditions in Schedule F to meet federal requirements and DEQ?s standard conditions for industrial NPDES permits. 

This permit will include information in the 2019 EPA Willamette Basin Mercury Total Maximum Daily Load. Permit coverage will not be available in streams that flow from the former Bohemia Mining District and are tributary to Dorena Reservoir.

  • The public comment period closed on March 27, 2020. 
  • Presentation Slides for Public Hearing, March 24, 2020

Public Notice

  • Proposed 700-PM General Permit
  • Proposed 700-PM Fact Sheet

DEQ intends to have a renewed permit available in May 2020.

700-PM General Permit

  • DEQ regulates the discharge of wastewater from suction dredge and in-water, non-motorized mining operations that recover precious metals or minerals from streambed sediments via the 700-PM NPDES general permit. DEQ issued the permit in May 2018. It updates the permit issued in 2015 to include current requirements.
  • The 700-PM general permit does not provide coverage for these types of mining discharges:  motorized in-stream placer mining, including motorized suction dredges in essential salmon habitat water
  • motorized suction dredges that exceed 30 horsepower or use suction hoses with inside diameters larger than four inches outside of essential salmon habitat water
  • suction dredge discharge to waters listed by DEQ as impaired for sedimentation, turbidity or toxics (other than chlorine)
  • mining discharges to water on or adjacent to tribal lands
  • mining discharges in Outstanding Resource Waters of North Fork Smith River and its tributaries
  • suction dredge discharges in State Scenic Waterways
  • discharges from highbanker and combination highbanker/suction dredge equipment (you may convert the combination highbanker/suction dredge to a suction dredge, but it must meet definition 19 in the permit.

  1. There may be additional requirements by other local (city, county), state, and federal (BLM, Forest Service, Army Corps) mining and land use authorities (not listed above) that have more stringent requirements than conditions specified in the 700-PM. You must abide by the most stringent requirement and the 700-PM does not exempt your operation from a more stringent requirement.

NOTE: Registration under the 700-PM general permit does not authorize suction dredge mining in areas where mining is prohibited.

A copy of the 700-PM general permit and resource materials are available at any DEQ office or by using the links provided below:

700-PM General Permit   

700-PM General Permit Evaluation Report 

700-PM General Permit Response to Comments 

Department of Justice Memo 

700-PM General Permit Evaluation Report (2015)

Response to Comments (2015)

700-PM General Permit: Application Information

Summary of basic 700PM requirements and conditions

Other Mining Discharges: Individual NPDES Permit

Small Off-Stream Mining and Ore Processing: Water Pollution Control Facility 600 General Permit

Large Off-Stream Mining and Ore Processing: Individual Water Pollution Control Facility Permit

Stormwater Permitting Considerations