Wisconsin Statutes

Wisconsin Administrative Code

Environmental Protection—General

Environmental Protection—Wisconsin Pollutant Discharge Elimination System

Environmental Protection—Air Pollution Control

Environmental Protection—Solid Waste Management

Environmental Protection—Hazardous Waste Management

Environmental Protection—Investigation and Remediation

Environmental Protection—Water Supply

Safety and Professional Services

Other Wisconsin Regulations Pertaining to Environmental Management



This is an ongoing listing of legal requirements and regulations in the environmental management area that either are, or have the potential to be, applicable to University of Wisconsin System campus operations. Our office endeavors to keep this listing as current and complete as possible; however, we make no claim that it covers all applicable aspects of environmental legal and regulatory requirements. Links are provided for the convenience of the user.

Office of Risk Management
University of Wisconsin System Administration
January 2015

Wisconsin Statutes

[ Note : As is the case with all electronic versions of the statutes, the statutes on these links cannot be certified under Wis. Stats. Only the printed Wisconsin Statutes and Annotations can be certified.]

Chapter 16 — Department of Administration

Establishment of state agency solid waste resource recovery and recycling program at 16.15.

Chapter 85 — Department of Transportation

Storage of highway salt at s. 85.17, Stats.

Chapter 94 — Plant industry

Agricultural chemical storage.

Chapter 101 — Regulation of Industry, Buildings and Safety

Refrigeration equipment and ozone-depleting refrigerant at s. 101.177, Stats.

Chapter 254 — Environmental health Lead, asbestos, radiation protection, recreational sanitation, animal-borne and vector-borne disease control.

Chapter 280 — Pure drinking water

Groundwater and water wells.

Chapter 281 — Water and sewage

General water resource statute.

Chapter 283 — Pollution discharge elimination

Water pollutant discharge systems.

Chapter 285 — Air pollution

Air pollution statute.

Chapter 287 — Solid waste reduction, recovery and recycling

Solid waste recycling, landfill bans.

Chapter 289 — Solid waste facilities

Solid waste facility standards and siting; Solid waste open burning standards; Commercial PCB waste storage and treatment facilities; Disposal of certain dredged materials; Tire dumps; Disposal and treatment records; Disposal and burning of low-level radioactive waste.

Chapter 291 — Hazardous waste management

Hazardous waste statute.

Chapter 292 — Remedial action

Includes hazardous substance releases and reporting.

Chapter 299 — General environmental provisions

Permit guarantee program. Laboratory certification program. Pollution prevention. Wastewater reporting and wastewater fee. Groundwater protection. Collection and disposal of products containing 2.4.5-T and silvex. Manufacture and purchase of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs). Sale and delivery of dry cleaning solvent. Medical waste management. Used oil fuel. Environmental protection requirements for tank vessels. Environmental Results Program and Environmental Improvement Program (Green Tier).

Chapter 323 — Emergency management

EPCRA planning, notification and reporting.


Wisconsin Administrative Code

[ Note : According to the Revisor of Statutes Bureau, the printed volumes of the Wisconsin Administrative Code should be consulted for the official text.]

Environmental Protection—General

NR 101 Reports and fees for wastewater discharges

Report and fee requirements for WPDES permit holders.

NR 151 Runoff management

Runoff pollution performance standards for agricultural, non-agricultural, and transportation facilities.

NR 157 Management of PCBs and products containing PCBs

Procedures for the storage, collection, transportation, processing, sampling, and final disposal of PCBs and products containing PCBs taken out of service for disposal. (These provisions do not affect PCBs and products containing PCBs in use).

Environmental Protection—Wisconsin Pollutant Discharge Elimination System

NR 200 — Application for discharge permits

Discharge permits requirements. Permits are required for discharges from point sources to surface waters of the state and additionally to land areas where pollutants may percolate, seep to, or be leached to groundwater. This includes the land application of sludge.

NR 202 — WPDES report of industrial waste contribution to municipal or domestic treatment systems

Rules for reporting discharges to municipal or domestic treatment systems.

NR 205 — General provisions

Definitions and abbreviations used in chs. NR 200 to 299. Permit general conditions for all WPDES permits and procedures to be used for issuing general WPDES permits.

NR 211 — General pretreatment requirements Sets the responsibilities of industrial users in preventing the discharge into publicly owned treatment works of pollutants which will interfere with the operation of the POTW, which will pass through the POTW treatment works insufficiently treated, or which will impair the use or disposal of POTW sludge.

NR 212 — Waste load allocated water quality related effluent limitations

Requirements used to determine total maximum pollutant loadings and corresponding water quality related effluent limitations.

NR 215 — List of toxic pollutants

A list of toxic pollutants. No discharge shall contain quantities of these pollutants greater than those which would remain after the discharge had received treatment by the best available technology economically achievable or greater than any lesser quantity necessary to provide an ample margin of safety.

NR 216 — Storm water discharge permits

WPDES storm water permit criteria for certain industrial facilities, construction sites and municipal separate storm sewer systems.

NR 217 — Effluent standards and limitations

Effluent standards for phosphorus.

NR 218 — Method and manner of sampling

Prescribes sampling methodology for WPDES monitoring requirements.

NR 220 — Categories and classes of point sources and effluent limitations

Lists the categories and classes of point sources other than publicly owned treatment works for which effluent limitations, standards of performance, pretreatment standards, standards for toxic substances, and other standards are established.


Environmental Protection—Air Pollution Control

NR 400 — Air pollution control definitions

Definitions applicable to NR 400 thru 499.

NR 404 — Ambient air quality

Air quality control regions. Criteria pollutants. Primary and secondary ambient air quality standards (re: NAAQS).

NR 405 — Prevention of significant deterioration

Requirements and procedures for reviewing and issuing air pollution control permits to all new major stationary sources and all major modifications to major sources located in attainment or unclassified areas.

NR 406 — Construction permits


NR 407 — Operation permits


NR 408 — Construction permits for direct major sources in nonattainment areas


NR 409 — Acid rain portion of operation permits


NR 410 — Air permit, emission and inspection fees


NR 415 — Control of particulate emissions 

NR 417 — Control of sulfur emissions


NR 429 — Malodorous emissions and open burning


NR 431 — Control of visible emissions


NR 440 — Standards of performance for new stationary sources


NR 445 — Control of hazardous pollutants


NR 446 — Control of mercury emissions


NR 447 — Control of asbestos emissions


NR 448 — Control of beryllium emissions


NR 449 — Control of vinyl chloride emissions


NR 486 — Employee commute options program


NR 487 — Clean fuel fleet program

Applies to all fleet operators with 10 or more covered fleet vehicles which can be centrally fueled and which operate in the counties of Kenosha , Milwaukee , Ozaukee, Racine , Washington and Waukesha .

NR 488 — Refrigerant recovery from salvaged or dismantled refrigeration equipment

Standards for recovery of regulated refrigerants, including registration, worker qualifications, training, recordkeeping, transportation.

Select references to “laboratory” in NR 400 series

NR 400.02 (90) ……………. Definition of laboratory

NR 406.04 (1)(j) …………… Potential exemption from construction permit requirements.

NR 407.03 (1)(o) ………….. Potential exemption from operation permit requirements.

NR 445.04 (1)(c)3. ……….. Control of hazardous air pollutants. Exemption for laboratory emissions, for sources last constructed or modified between October 1, 1988 and July 1, 2004.

NR 445.05 (1)(c)3. ……….. Control of hazardous air pollutants. Exemption for laboratory emissions, for sources constructed or last modified on or before October 1, 1988.

NR 445.07 (5)(c) ………….. Emission thresholds, standards, control requirements for all hazardous air contaminants. Exemption for laboratory emissions.

Ch. NR 463, subch. I ……… Chromium emissions from hard and decorative chromium electroplating and chromium anodizing tanks. Some research laboratory exemptions.

Ch. NR 465 …………………… National emission standards for hazardous air pollutants for general surface coating processes. Some research laboratory exemptions.

Ch. NR 466 …………………… National emission standards for hazardous air pollutants for the printing and publishing industry. Some research laboratory exemptions.


Environmental Protection—Solid Waste Management

NR 526 Medical Waste Management

Requirements for infectious waste management and medical waste reduction.

NR 538 Beneficial use of industrial byproducts

Provides a solid waste rules exemption for the generation, use, transport or storage of beneficially-used industrial byproducts, including: raw material for manufacturing; waste stabilization / solidification; supplemental fuel source; landfill daily cover ; certain geotechnical fills; certain transportation facility embankments; certain surface courses; decorative stone; and, cold weather road abrasive.

NR 544 Effective Recycling Programs

Specifies the criteria under which municipal recycling programs operate.


 Environmental Protection—Hazardous Waste Management

DNR Solid and Hazardous Waste Codes and Statutes

NR 660 – Hazardous waste management: general

Standards for notification and definitions. Listings of references for engineering standards and federal regulations and documents.

NR 661 – Hazardous waste identification and listing

Hazardous waste definition and exclusions. Listed and characteristic hazardous wastes described.

NR 662 Hazardous waste generator standards

Standards for large quantity, small quantity, and very small quantity hazardous waste generators, including rules for hazardous waste determination, manifests, pre-transport, recordkeeping, reporting, and exports.

NR 663 – Hazardous waste transporter standards

Standards for transporter ID numbers, manifests, and waste discharges.

NR 664 – Hazardous waste treatment, storage and disposal facility standards

Applies to licensed hazardous waste treatment, storage and disposal facilities.

NR 665 Interim license hazardous waste treatment, storage and disposal facility standards

Contains references for several hazardous waste generator standards from NR 662, including

  • explosives or munitions emergencies
  • containers
  • air emission standards for process vents, equipment leaks, tanks, surface impoundments and containers
  • drip pads
  • containment buildings
  • training
  • preparedness and prevention
  • contingency plan and emergency procedures
  • annual reporting

NR 666 Standards for managing specific hazardous wastes and specific types of hazardous waste management facilities

Includes standards for:

  • Recyclable Materials Used for Precious Metal Recovery
  • Spent Lead-Acid Batteries Being Reclaimed
  • Conditional Exemption for Low-Level Mixed Waste Storage, Treatment, Transportation and Disposal

NR 668 Hazardous waste land disposal restrictions

Standards containing disposal prohibitions, the dilution prohibition, and storage prohibitions. Includes regulations for generator paperwork and recordkeeping, and prohibitions on storage of PCB waste (>50ppm).

NR 673 Universal waste management standards

Standards for universal waste handlers.

NR 679 Used oil management standards

Standards for used oil generators.


Environmental Protection—Investigation and Remediation

NR 706—Hazardous substance discharge notification and source confirmation requirements

Wisconsin spill notification requirements.

NR 746—Risk screening and closure criteria for petroleum product contaminated sites, and agency roles and responsibilities

Applies to certain sites where petroleum products have been discharged from tanks.


Environmental Protection—Water Supply

NR 812—Well construction and pump installation

Regulates installation, operation, treatment and abandonment of groundwater wells.


Safety & Professional Services

SPS 332 Public Employee Safety and HealthEstablishes minimum occupational safety and health standards for public employees

SPS 335 — Infectious agents

Identifies infectious agents relevant to the Employees’ Right to Know Law, ss. 101.58 to 101.599, Stats.

SPS 343 — Anhydrous ammonia

Standards for the storage and handling of anhydrous ammonia.

SPS 361 – Administration and Enforcement

Public-sector construction site erosion control permitting (under WPDES) at 61.115.

SPS 382 — Design, construction, installation, supervision and inspection of plumbing

Wastewater treatment devices under 82.34, including grease interceptors, plaster and heavy solids traps, and chemical waste piping systems.


Other Wisconsin regulations pertaining to environmental management

ATCP 93 — Flammable and combustible liquids

Regulates the storage, display, installation, operation, use, maintenance and transportation of flammable and combustible liquids; including the installation, registration, maintenance and abandonment of petroleum tanks.

WEM 1 — Fees

Sets the fee payment structure for owners or operators of facilities with hazardous chemicals present (re: EPCRA).

WEM 3 — Toxic chemical inventory reports by private and public agencies

Reporting requirements for submission of toxic chemical inventory reports by private agencies and public agencies (re: EPCRA).

Trans 277 — Highway salt storage requirements

Standards for the storage of highway to protect ground and surface water from contamination by dissolved chlorides.

DHS 157 — Radiation protection

Regulates the receipt, use, transfer, possession, ownership or acquisition of radiation sources.

DHS 159 — Asbestos certification and training accreditation

Standards for asbestos abatement and asbestos management, certification of persons doing asbestos abatement or management, and training.


40 CFR 82 Protection of stratospheric ozone

Refrigerant recycling rule, including: prohibition on venting; service practice requirements; equipment, reclaimer and technician certification; refrigerant leaks and sales restrictions; MVAC-like appliances; and, disposal and recordkeeping requirements. [Other keywords: CFCs; air conditioning equipment; freon; R-12; R-22.]

40 CFR 110 Discharge of oil

General definitions; definition of discharge of oil, and exemptions; dispersant prohibition; and, requirement for notification of oil discharge. [Other keywords: release, spill; petroleum; National Response Center (NRC).]

40 CFR 112 Oil pollution prevention

Spill Prevention, Control, and Countermeasure (SPCC) Plan requirements. [Other keywords: release, discharge; petroleum; National Response Center (NRC).]

40 CFR 302 Designation, reportable quantities, and notification

Listing and Reportable Quantities (RQs) for CERCLA section 102(a) hazardous substance releases; notification requirement. [Other keywords: spill; National Response Center (NRC).]

40 CFR 355 Emergency planning and notification

Listing, Reportable Quantities (RQs), and Threshold Planning Quantities (TPQs) for EPCRA section 302(a)(2) Extremely Hazardous Substances (EHS) releases; notification requirement. [Other keywords: spill; local emergency planning committee (LERC); state emergency response commission (SERC).]

40 CFR 372 Toxic chemical release reporting: community right-to-know

Incorporated by reference for UW campuses under WEM 3. (NOTE: the federal exemption for laboratory chemicals is not available to UW System campuses for TRI reporting purposes, per WEM 3.06).

40 CFR 761 Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) manufacturing, processing, distribution in commerce, and use prohibitions

Includes rules on PCB storage, disposal, spill cleanup, and recordkeeping.

40 CFR 763 Asbestos

Subpart G (asbestos worker protection) protects certain state and local government employees who are not protected by the Asbestos Standards of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). Applies the OSHA Asbestos Standards in 29 CFR 1910.1001 and 29 CFR 1926.1101 to these employees.

42 CFR 72 Interstate shipment of etiologic agents

Requirements for packaging and delivery; exemptions.

42 CFR 73 Select agents and toxins

Requirements for possession, use, and transfer of select agents and toxins. Overlap select agents and toxins are subject to regulation by both CDC and APHIS.


  • Discharges to sanitary sewers are regulated by the POTW which serves your campus.
  • Various permits (e.g., Title V operation permits, WPDES water discharge permits, certain general permits) will contain specific requirements.
  • Solid waste recycling is subject to local ordinance requirements


This publication was prepared for environmental, health and safety staff at University of Wisconsin System campuses, to assist in finding resources and information for regulatory compliance. It is not intended to render legal advice.

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