Critical Issues in Aviation and the Environment 2009: Water Quality

The effects of airport operations on water quality have been garnering attention as regulators look beyond the more obvious sources of water pollution, such as end-of-pipe industrial waste discharged into large water bodies, and attempt to address issues such as storm water runoff and non-point sources. Airports, which typically include large expanses of impervious surfaces and host activities that can generate discharges of potential contaminants, such as vehicle and aircraft fueling, maintenance, and deicing, have been subject to the requirements of the Clean Water Act for more than a decade, but the application of these rules to the unique operating environment of airports still is being refined. One challenge has been to identify the range of technologies available to minimize and manage deicing runoff, and then to define the climatological, operational, cost, and other factors that enable or disenable their use at specific airports. More recently, site-specific water quality considerations, such as those resulting in the identification of impaired water bodies and the establishment of total maximum daily loads (TMDLs) for specific pollutants for those water bodies, have added complexity to airport permitting. The relationship, and occasional tension, between protecting the environment and protecting the safety of the traveling public has arisen in the water quality context in two distinct areas: environmental impacts of deicing and anti-icing agents, and impacts on aviation safety from wildlife where airports are located near large bodies of water.


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Web
  • Features: References;
  • Pagination: pp 24-27
  • Monograph Title: Critical Issues in Aviation and the Environment 2009
  • Serial:

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01142329
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS, TRB
  • Created Date: Oct 20 2009 4:49PM