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EHS - Box 1914
164 Angell Street
Providence, RI 02912
Office: (401) 863-3353
Fax: (401) 863-7676


Wastewater discharges from the University are regulated by the RI Department of Environmental Management (RIDEM) Office of Water or the Narragansett Bay Commission (NBC) depending on the ultimate destination of the wastewater discharge.

Most wastewater discharges from University buildings are discharged under permits issued by the NBC. These wastewaters flow from our buildings through the Providence sewer system for treatment at NBC’s Publicly Owned Treatment Works (POTW) located at Fields Point prior to discharge to Narragansett Bay. NBC issues permits to the University to discharge wastewater generated from the following operations:

  • Laundry rooms in dormitories
  • Food Service operations
  • Photographic and X-ray darkrooms
  • Research buildings
  • Ice melt from Meehan Auditorium
  • Construction activities

These permits establish specific conditions under which wastewater can be discharged. The NBC requires monitoring or periodic sampling of wastewater discharged by the University to demonstrate compliance with applicable regulations. These permits prohibit the discharges of any chemicals or wastewater with a pH lower than 5.0 or higher than 10.0.

Wastewaters such as stormwater, non-contact cooling waters and other uncontaminated wastewaters are in some cases discharged directly to surface water through the Providence stormwater system. These discharges are regulated under RI Pollution Discharge Elimination System (RIPDES) permits issues by RIDEM.