Dental Offices

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) published Dental Office Point Source Category regulation in the Federal Register on June 14, 2017. The primary purpose of the dental effluent guidelines is to reduce the discharge of mercury to the environment by controlling the discharge of mercury-containing dental amalgam to Publicly Owned Treatment Works (POTW ), which refers to public sewers and treatment plants. Dental Office Point Source Category regulation is codified at 40 Code of Federal Regulation (CFR) Part 441. In addition to requiring operation and maintenance of dental amalgam separators and utilization of Best Management Practices, dental offices are required to file a one-time compliance report with the POTW. Arcata dental offices discharging to the POTW before July 14, 2017 must submit a one-time compliance report to the City of Arcata on or before October 12, 2020, or 90 days after transfer of ownership. Dental offices which began discharging to the POTW on or after July 14, 2017 must submit a one-time compliance report to the City of Arcata within 90-days of the start of discharge.

A one-time report form designed to assist dental offices in fulfilling the reporting requirements is available here. Dental offices are not required to use this form for one-time reporting to the POTW; they may submit the report in any format that meets the requirements specified in 40 CFR Part 441. It is the dental discharger’s responsibility to ensure compliance with Pretreatment Standards and reporting and record keeping requirements codified at 40 CFR Part 441. Dental Effluent Guideline information is available online at You are encouraged to reach out to the American Dental Association or the City of Arcata Environmental Compliance Officer for assistance, if needed. If you have any questions regarding the one-time compliance report requirements or Pretreatment Standards for dental offices you may contact the Environmental Services Department at (707) 822-8184 and request to speak with the Environmental Compliance Officer.