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Environmental Facilities Information

Water Discharge Sites

The purpose of the State Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (SPDES) Program is to protect human health and the environment. The SPDES permit program in the Department’s Division of Water regulates municipal and industrial wastewater treatment facilities that discharge directly into navigable waters. Wastewater treatment facilities (also called "point sources") are issued SPDES permits regulating their discharge. "Point sources" means discrete conveyances such as pipes or man made ditches. Although individual homes that are connected to a municipal system or that do not have a surface discharge do not need permits, facilities must obtain permits if their discharges go directly to surface waters.

More Informatiion at the SPDES Permit Program.

Toxic Release Inventory

TRI tracks the management of certain toxic chemicals that may pose a threat to human health and the environment. U.S. facilities in different industry sectors must report annually how much of each chemical is released to the environment and/or managed through recycling, energy recovery and treatment. (A "release" of a chemical means that it is emitted to the air or water, or placed in some type of land disposal.)

The information submitted by facilities is compiled in the Toxics Release Inventory. TRI helps support informed decision-making by companies, government agencies, non-governmental organizations and the public.

The data here represents the most recent data available from the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

More detailed information can be found at the EPA's Toxic Release Inventory Program

Air Emission Sources

The Air Facility System (AFS) contains both emissions and compliance data on air pollution point sources regulated by the NYSDEC. AFS contains data on industrial plants and their components: stacks, the points at which emissions are introduced into the atmosphere; points, the emission point or process within a plant that produce the pollutant emissions; and segments, which are components of the processes that produce emissions. Compliance data are maintained at the plant and point levels, tracking classification status, inspections, and compliance actions. AFS also includes data for management of operating permit applications and renewals.

The information in AFS is used in preparation of State Implementation Plans (SIP), to track the compliance status of point sources with various regulatory programs and to report air emissions estimates for pollutants regulated under the Clean Air Act. General source identification information is maintained, such as name, address, industrial classification, operating status, and description, as well as descriptive and parametric data on stacks, emission points, and processes within the facility.

More Information at the Division of Air Resources.

Active Solid Waste Management Facilities

The construction and operation of nonhazardous solid waste facilities in New York State are governed by a set of rules known as Part 360. Many types of facilities are covered by these rules; the most familiar to the average New Yorker include landfills (disposal) and transfer stations (collection). These two types of facilities can be broken down into specific types of landfills and transfer stations. For instance, landfills may be designed to accept only debris from construction and demolition activities or to dispose of waste from a specific industry, like paper manufacturing byproducts. Transfer stations categories include facilities that are categorized by size and type of waste. A small transfer station handles less than 12,000 tons per year, the amount of garbage generated by about 25 people. A large transfer station operates under different rules and handle more than 12,000 tons per year. Transfer stations categorized by waste type handle municipal (household) waste, recyclables, or medical waste.
Waste to Energy facilities are also regulated by Part 360. These disposal facilities use garbage as fuel to produce steam and/or electricity which can then be sold to local customers or to power companies. Solid waste facilities are regulated under Part 360 of the New York State Code of Rules and Regulations, Title 6 (6NYCRR Part 360). Solid waste transfer and disposal facilities include large and small transfer stations, waste-to-energy facilities, and several types of landfills.

More Information at the Solid Waste Management (SWM) Planning page of the Division of Materials Management.

Environmental Remediation Sites

Years ago, many wastes were dumped on the ground, in rivers, or left out in the open. As a result, thousands of uncontrolled or abandoned hazardous waste sites were created. Some common hazardous waste sites include abandoned warehouses, manufacturing facilities, processing plants, and landfills. In response to growing concern over health and environmental risks posed by hazardous waste sites, NY State established the Superfund Program in 1980 to start to clean up these sites. The Superfund is administered by the NYSDEC and the USEPA.

More information about Environmental Remediation Sites

Water Withdrawal Facilities

The state's waters are used for domestic, municipal, agricultural, commercial, industrial, power, recreational and other important public purposes. To ensure that our water supply meets present and future needs, DEC requires a permit for water withdrawals of any purpose having the capacity to withdraw 100,000 gallons or more per day of surface or groundwater. The law also requires statewide registration of existing agricultural withdrawals that are greater than 100,000 gpd and major basin water diversions of greater than 1,000,000 gpd. Furthermore, facilities must file an annual report with DEC that includes details regarding the water source, the amount of water withdrawn, the use for which the water is withdrawn, and how the water is returned to the environment.

More Information about Water Withdrawal.

Environmental Justice Areas

It is the general policy of DEC to promote environmental justice and incorporate measures for achieving environmental justice into its programs, policies, regulations, legislative proposals, and activities. As established in DEC Commissioner Policy 29 on Environmental Justice and Permitting (CP-29), DEC identified potential environmental justice areas (PEJAs) for use in implementing enhanced public participation and public notification mechanisms. PEJAs are 2000 U.S. Census block groups of 250 to 500 households each that, in the 2000 Census, had populations that met or exceeded at least one of the following statistical thresholds:

  1. At least 51.1% of the population in an urban area reported themselves to be members of minority groups; or
  2. At least 33.8% of the population in a rural area reported themselves to be members of minority groups; or
  3. At least 23.59% of the population in an urban or rural area had household incomes below the federal poverty level.
Urban and rural designations for census block groups were established by the U.S. Census Bureau. See CP-29 for more information.

More Information about Environmental Justice.


Air Emissions Sites

Division of Air Resources

Active Solid Waste Sites

Division of Materials Management

TRI Sites


Toxic Release Inventory Program Contacts

Remediation Sites

Division of Environmental Remediation

Water Withdrawal Facilities

Division of Water
Water Withdrawal, Conservation and Drought

Water Discharge Sites

Division of Water
Bureau of Water Permits

Environmental Justice

Office of Environmental Justice

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