Synopsis of EPA Final Rule for Effluent Guidelines for Concentrated Aquatic Animal Facilities

Guidelines, Template and Example for preparation of BMP's Effluent BMP's for Intensive Aquaculture Facilities in the Western US.

On August 23, 2004, the US EPA released its Final Aquaculture Effluent Limitation Guidelines in the Federal Register.

The complete document is available online at or as a PDF file on this server ( EPA Regulations) or from the Federal Server at PDF of effluent regulations.

A Fact Sheet has been prepared by EPA reviewing the new aquaculture effluent guidelines.


A Second Synopsis/Fact Sheet has been independently prepared by the National Sea Grant Law Center.

The effluent limitation guidelines affect 3 subcategories of the aquaculture industry:

Flow-through Systems

Net Pens

Recirculating Systems - Of primary interest to many aquaculture producers in the Western states.

Other useful information

Aquaculture effluent reduction research conducted by Universities in the Western Regional Aquaculture Center
Includes studies on fate and settling rates of feed and feces in raceways and tanks, off-flavor reduction,reducing phosphorus discharges, use of various filter designs, and evaluations of regulatory guidelines.

Links to informational workshops and research results on recirculation systems

North Carolina workshop on Recirculating Aquaculture Systems

Recirculating Trout Farm Design Demo farm in Nipomo, California - Nipomo Trout Hatchery - with Air lift/ stripping process "U" tubes. Contact Gene Carl for details.

Proposed EPA Guidelines 2002 These were the proposed guidelines. They were altered considerably to the final form.

Abstract of research paper:
Application of Chemical Coagulation Aids for the Removal of Suspended Solids (TSS) and Phosphorus from the Microscreen Effluent Discharge of an Intensive Recirculating Aquaculture System