Protecting public health is our number one priority. We are taking steps to ensure the safety of our staff and the public and are working with regulated entities to provide flexibility where possible.
We are temporarily limiting some routine activities to ensure we are not putting our employees, the public, or the regulated community at risk. Every effort will be made to avoid unnecessarily disrupting regulated facilities while they respond to COVID-19.
Click to expand the resources below related to drinking water, wastewater, waste management, and air quality.
COVID-19 has not been detected in drinking water supplies. Continue using and drinking tap water as normal. There is no need to boil your water as a precaution against COVID-19.
- COVID-19 information for wastewater operators and managers
- Addendum to COVID19 information for wastewater operators
- Termination of April 8, 2020, Addendum to DEQ's March 18, 2020, Letter
- CDC—Information for Sanitation and Wastewater Workers on COVID-19
- EPA—Coronavirus Information
- EPA—Coronavirus and Drinking Water and Wastewater
- EPA—COVID-19 Enforcement and Compliance Resources
- WHO—Information and guidance
- WEF—The water professional’s guide to COVID-19
- Implementing the hierarchy controls for wastewater worker protection
Flush only toilet paper to avoid costly damage to private and public sewer lines and treatment systems.
Waste Management and Remediation
- COVID-19 information for hazardous waste and used oil handlers
- COVID-19 solid wastes
- Implementation of underground storage tank rules during COVID-19
- CDC—Open Burning During the COVID-19 Pandemic
- CDC—COVID-19: What you need to know
- DEQ—COVID-19 Wastes
- DEQ—Public asked to refrain from nonessential open burning
COVID-19 can affect the respiratory system (nose, throat, lungs), cause asthma attacks, and possibly lead to pneumonia and acute respiratory disease.
To avoid impacting communities struggling to contain COVID-19, DEQ asks residents to refrain from residential open burning or other non-essential open burning activities until further notice. This includes burning tree limbs, leaves, yard trimmings, garden waste, burn barrels, and other residential outdoor burning activities.
Alternatives to burning:
- Lawn mulching—Leave grass clippings on your lawn to add nutrients back into the soil and improve lawn health.
- Composting—Compost yard waste to recycle organic material and add nutrients back into the soil.
- Chipping—Add chipped brush, pruning, or wood waste to your compost pile or soil to increase nutrient content.
- Curbside pickup—Collect and separate yard waste, organic material, and recyclables and set them out for curbside collection. Check with your local government or waste management company for local services.
- Landfills—Many landfills offer free or reduced fees for yard waste.
Burning materials such as personal protective equipment, paper masks, or disinfectant wipes is prohibited since these materials could be contaminated with the COVID-19 virus. Contact DEQ’s Solid Waste Program for disposal information.