Blue Plains is the largest wastewater treatment plant in the metropolitan Washington region, and the largest advanced treatment facility in the world. The plant, which is located in the District of Columbia and operated by DC Water, accounts for approximately 48 percent of the region’s current wastewater treatment capacity, serving millions of residents, businesses, and visitors in its multi-jurisdiction service area. Blue Plains is permitted to discharge an average of 370 million gallons a day (mgd) to the Potomac River.
The Blue Plains 2012 Intermunicipal Agreement (2012 IMA) is a contract/regional agreement between Parties that share in the wastewater treatment services provided by the Blue Plains Wastewater Treatment Plant. Those signatory Parties are the District of Columbia, DC Water (agency that operates Blue Plains), Fairfax County, Montgomery County, Prince George’s County, and the Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission (WSSC) in Maryland. There are also other smaller entities that have some or all of their wastewater treated at Blue Plains but are not formal Parties to the 2012 IMA. They are Loudoun Water, Dulles Airport, and the Town of Vienna, the Naval Ship Research and Development Center, and National Park Services in Maryland. DC Water is responsible for managing and coordinating Blue Plains matters with those entities.
Under the terms of the 2012 IMA, the Blue Plains IMA Regional Committee (IMA-RC) is the coordinating body for the purpose of interpreting, administering, and implementing the 2012 IMA. The IMA-RC includes both policy and technical representatives from each of the signatory Parties; and its members are appointed by the Chief Administrative Officer/General Manager of each jurisdiction/agency (see the IMA-RC membership).
The 2012 IMA documents the commitment by the IMA Parties to:
- Allocate capacity at Blue Plains and in the Potomac Interceptor
- Share Capital Costs and Operating & Maintenance Costs
- Define financial and operational commitments
- Define the rights and responsibilities of the Parties
- Establish a commitment to cooperate, coordinate and resolve disputes
- Support regional growth and development
- Protect the Potomac River, Anacostia River, and the Chesapeake Bay
The IMA-RC is supported by COG staff, who provide technical, administrative, legal, and secretariat support to the Parties in implementing the terms of the 2012 IMA.
COG Staff Contact: Tanya Spano