Santee Cooper – Winyah Generating Station

SCPSA Winyah Virtual Public Hearing

DHEC’s Bureau of Water will hold a virtual public hearing on November 16, 2021 at 6:30 PM to accept oral comments on the reissuance of a National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit for the South Carolina Public Service Authority (SCPSA) Winyah Generating Station.

To join by phone: 1-864-558-7311 | Access Code 206 643 712# 

SCPSC Winyah Virtual Public Hearing Presentation - November 16, 2021

Overview  

The South Carolina Public Service Authority (SCPSA)(Santee Cooper) Winyah Generating Station (WGS) is a coal-fired electric power generating station located at 661 Steam Plant Drive, Georgetown, SC, 29440, in Georgetown, County. WGS began operation in 1975.   

WGS is permitted to discharge treated wastewater to Turkey Creek (to Pennyroyal Creek to the Sampit River) and to the North Santee River under NPDES permit SC0022471 issued by DHEC on January 7, 2008 and expired on July 31, 2011. The facility continues to operate under the existing administratively-continued permit which sets monitoring requirements and pollutant limits, as necessary, on the effluent from the wastewater treatment system. Flow, pH, total suspended solids (TSS), oil & grease, temperature, arsenic, copper, manganese, thallium, nickel, selenium, total residual chlorine (TRC), whole effluent toxicity (WET), and free available chlorine are currently monitored in the permit.  

WGS submitted an application for reissuance of their NPDES permit, and the Department has drafted a new draft NPDES permit in accordance with this request and applicable regulations. The draft permit, DHEC's rationale for the proposed permit limitations, and the permit application are available at the links below.  

In addition to setting effluent monitoring requirements and pollutant limits, the new draft NPDES permit would also require continued groundwater monitoring at the site.   Eleven wells would be monitored for metals (arsenic, cadmium, chromium, and selenium), total dissolved solids, turbidity, pH. and specific conductance.  

The draft permit is currently on public notice as of October 1, 2021. The public notice can be found at https://epermweb.dhec.sc.gov/ncore/#/external/publicnotice/search

Community Engagement  

Community Engagement is an important component of the environmental permitting process that provides DHEC with valuable input from nearby communities and allows us to hear comments, concerns and questions before a final permit decision is made. The input that DHEC staff receives from community members can result in additional review, research and consideration of issues unique to a specific site or facility by DHEC staff. For communities that are impacted by a regulated facility our Community Engagement activities often continue after our formal public comment period closes.   

As part of the permitting process, DHEC engages surrounding communities and the general public prior to making a final permit decision in order to:   

  • Provide information about proposed environmental activities in their communities; 
  • Give community members and other interested parties an opportunity to submit relevant information to DHEC for consideration prior to making a final permit decision;
  • and  Provide an opportunity to bring other concerns to the attention of DHEC and the applicant.   

DHEC values all comments received during the permitting process and is committed to addressing and considering all relevant information prior to making a final permit decision. Public input is an important part of the permitting process and sometimes results in changes to permit conditions and operational practices if a permit is issued.   

Virtual Public Meeting (6:00 pm) and Virtual Public Hearing (6:30 pm) November 16, 2021   

On November 16, 2021, DHEC’s Bureau of Water will hold an informational virtual public meeting at 6:00 pm and a virtual public hearing at 6:30 pm to discuss the reissuance of the NPDES permit for SCPSA Winyah Generating Station SC0022471. During the meeting DHEC Staff will provide a brief technical presentation on the draft NPDES permit and then be available to answer questions. During the hearing, DHEC will accept oral comments on the draft NPDES permit but will not answer questions. The virtual meeting and hearing will be held using an online platform, which will provide interested persons the ability to participate remotely.  A call-in number will also be provided for those with limited or no internet.  Anyone who plans to participate in the virtual public meeting or hearing should complete the registration form prior to November 16, 2021. After we receive your registration, we will be able to provide you with instructions on how to join the virtual public meeting and hearing from your personal device.  

Questions may be submitted prior to November 16, 2021 at the following link and DHEC staff will answer those questions during the public meeting. Submit questions here. A recording of the virtual public hearing and all materials discussed during the hearing will be posted on our webpage prior to the end of the public comment period. If you are unable to access the webpage, or have questions about participating in the virtual meeting or hearing, please contact Byron Amick no later than November 10, 2021 at (803) 898-4236, or by email at amickbm@dhec.sc.gov, to register and receive the hearing materials. 

How to Submit Comments   

Written comments will be accepted through December 1, 2021, and should be submitted to:   

Byron Amick 
DHEC | Bureau of Water  
2600 Bull Street  
Columbia, SC 29201  
Email: amickbm@dhec.sc.gov 
Phone: (803) 898-4236 

What to Expect After the Public Comment Period    

Comments on the draft permit will be accepted by DHEC through close of business on December 1, 2021. All comments received by the end of the notice period, will be considered when making a decision to approve, disapprove, or modify the permit. Once a final decision is made by DHEC, this webpage will be updated and everyone on DHEC’s mailing list for SCPSA Winyah Generating Station will be notified. If you would like to be on our mailing list, please complete the registration form.  

Local DHEC Contacts   

To speak with local DHEC staff, please contact our Columbia Environmental Affairs Office at (803) 896‐0620.  

For information on current or previous sites of public interest, visit DHEC's Environmental Sites of Interest webpage.