DHEC Environmental eNews
March 2022 | View as Webpage
DHEC continues to work with federal, state, and local partners as it responds to COVID-19 in South Carolina. As we remain committed to protecting the safety and health of the public during this ongoing pandemic, DHEC's Environmental Affairs staff is also focused on keeping our customers and stakeholders informed of important events, regulations, meetings, permitting information, and compliance information.
COVID-19 Update

Beginning March 15, the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) transitioned to reporting COVID-19 data once a week on Tuesdays. Data includes COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations, deaths, and vaccinations, among other data points.

DHEC will continue to gradually close its COVID-19 testing vendor sites in several more counties across the state from March 14-April 1, but will continue providing free rapid at-home antigen tests at its public health departments statewide and will update its testing locator in real time to show which locations have them in stock. Additionally, the federal government has expanded its at-home test program to offer every home in the U.S. two sets of four free at-⁠home tests. If you already ordered your first set, order a second today.
Tracking West Nile Virus

Birds play an important role in maintaining and spreading West Nile virus (WNV). Mosquitoes become infected with WNV when they feed on infected birds that carry the virus in their blood. DHEC accepts submission of dead birds March 15-November 30 each year. Tracking the virus in birds that have a high death rate from WNV alerts us to virus activity in a certain area of the state. Please visit our website here to learn more.
Aquatic Science Programs Release First Annual Newsletter

The Bureau of Water's Aquatic Science Programs recently launched an annual newsletter.

This inaugural document shares a summary of the program’s 2021 work and looks ahead for what is in store for 2022. Some of the highlights include beach monitoring as well as well as estuarine and coastal assessment.
State and Local Emissions Reporting

The Bureau of Air Quality's Emissions Inventory Section held a training regarding the State and Local Emissions Reporting System (SLEIS) and upcoming 2021 emissions reporting from regulated facilities. This webinar was held on February 3, and focused on the new version of SLEIS being used to collect data and specific requirements to submit operational and emissions data. A link to the recorded webinar is located on the Emissions Inventory webpage. Facilities may email the Section for assistance through ei_submittals@dhec.sc.govApproximately 90 facilities are required to submit reports due March 31, 2022.
Water Utilities & Cybersecurity
Now, more than ever, it is important to protect water and wastewater systems from cyberattacks. All water and wastewater system owners and operators are encouraged to maintain a heightened awareness of possible intrusions into their operational networks and to be prepared to maintain critical operations if a cyberattack were to happen.  
It is critical for water and wastewater utilities to be aware, protected and prepared to respond to a cyberattack. To assist you, the Bureau of Water is continually updating our cybersecurity webpage where you can find up-to-date information and resources.  
BEHS Virtual Career Fair

The Bureau of Environmental Health Services (BEHS) is holding a virtual career fair on March 30. Learn more about the career opportunities offered in Environmental Health, including:
  • Onsite Wastewater
  • Air, Land, and Water Inspectors
  • Rabies Prevention
  • Food Protection
  • Dairy and Manufactured Food
  • Laboratory Certification
  • Medical Entomology
  • Oil, Chemical, and Nuclear Environmental Response

Click here to register and for more information.
Rob Devlin Named Bureau of Water Assistant Chief
Rob Devlin was recently named Assistant Bureau Chief for the Bureau of Water (BOW). He will oversee the Office of Rural Water; Aquatic Science Programs; the Division of Water Pollution Compliance and Enforcement; the Division of Drinking Water and Recreational Waters Protection; and the Division of Water Monitoring, Assessment, and Protection.

Rob began at DHEC in 1989 as a hydrogeologist in Bureau of Land Waste Management’s Underground Storage Tanks Division. He went on to manage BOW's Groundwater Management Section starting in 2009, and in 2018, Rob became the Water Monitoring Assessment and Protection Division Director.
Hazardous Air Pollutants Update

On January 5, 2022, the EPA published a final rule adding 1-bromopropane (1-BP) to the list of hazardous air pollutants (HAPs) regulated under Section 112 of the Clean Air Act. The HAP is also known as n-propyl bromide and the CAS # is 106-94-5. According to the rule summary, some of the uses for 1-BP include electronics and metal cleaning, surface coatings, dry cleaning, adhesives and as an intermediate chemical in the manufacture of pharmaceuticals and agricultural products.

The final rule became effective on February 4, 2022. If your facility has the potential to the emit this new HAP, please contact the Air Permitting Division to discuss how this impacts your facility. Additional information may be found here.
BEHS Promotes Rabies Prevention with Spring Clinics

Each spring, DHEC works to promote rabies clinics across South Carolina and raise awareness about rabies prevention. Terri McCollister, Rabies Prevention Program Team Lead, has been doing her part to promote rabies safety and vaccination at events across the state.

Terri was recently invited to speak on behalf of DHEC at the CarolinasUNITE Animal Welfare Professionals Conference in Myrtle Beach. CarolinasUNITE is a collaboration between the North Carolina Animal Federation and the South Carolina Animal Care and Control Association, aiming to bring together animal welfare professionals from both states for education and networking. Read more.
Join Our Team!
As the state agency charged with promoting and protecting South Carolina's public health and environment, DHEC has a legacy of attracting and retaining talented individuals who want to build rewarding and successful careers. DHEC's Environmental Affairs employs a wide range of environmental professionals from engineers and geologists to inspectors and meteorologists.
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