harmsen, llc

Common Engineering Abbreviations

ADA – Americans with Disabilities Act
Federal act governing the accessibility to sites for the disabled.

AKART – All Known and Reasonable Technology
By meeting the requirements of codes and manuals such as the DOE Stormwater Manual, a project is presumed to meet the technology-based treatment requirements of State law. In the case of stormwater, to provide all known available and reasonable methods of treatment, prevention and control.

APWA – American Public Works Association
Association that promotes high quality public works. Recognized internationally.

BLA – Boundary Line Adjustment
Revising the boundary between two or more properties without creating additional properties.

BMP – Best Management Practice
Technically sound stormwater management practices which are presumed to protect water quality and instream habitat.

CFS – Cubic Feet per Second

CUP – Conditional Use Permit
A use of land that is under special conditions imposed by the local jurisdiction and under the approval of a Hearing’s Examiner at a public hearing.

DOE or WADOE – Washington State Department of Ecology

DOE Manual – Stormwater Management Manual
The DOE Manual provides guidance for local municipalities in the management of stormwater. There are separate manuals for Western and Eastern Washington.

DFW or WADFW – Washington State Department of Fish and Wildlife.

EIS – Environmental Impact Statement
An environmental impact statement must be prepared when the lead agency determines a proposal is likely to have significant adverse environmental impacts. The EIS provides an impartial discussion of significant environmental impacts, reasonable alternatives, and mitigation measures that would avoid or minimize adverse impacts. The lead agency will issue a draft EIS is issued with a 30-day comment period to allow other agencies, tribes, and the public to comment on the environmental analysis and conclusions. The lead agency will use these comments to finalize the environmental analysis and issue a final EIS.

FEMA – Federal Emergency Management Agency
Federal agency involved in disaster mitigation, preparedness, response, recovery, education, and references. In our field, mostly dealt with in floodplain management.

GPM – Gallons per Minute

LID – Low Impact Development
The work of minimizing the impact of development to the environment through creative design such as reducing the footprint, recycling, reuse, high efficient systems and much more.

NPDES – National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System
A provision of the Clean Water Act which prohibits discharge of pollutants into waters of the United States unless a special permit is issued by EPA, a state, or, where delegated, a tribal government on an Indian reservation. In Washington State, the Department of Ecology is the permit authority.

SEPA – State Environmental Policy Act
A state policy that requires state and local agencies to consider the likely environmental consequences of a proposal before approving or denying the proposal. The SEPA Checklist is a series of questions that allow an agency to determine likely impacts of a project. Upon review of the checklist, an agency can issue a Determination of Non-significance (DNS); a mitigated Determination of Non-significance (MDNS); or a Determination of Significance (DS). A Determination of Significance will lead to an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS).

SWPPP – Surface Water Pollution Prevention Plan
The plans and reports that detail a project’s methods for controlling erosion and other pollutants during construction.

WSDOT – Washington State Department of Transportation
Department involved in the design and maintenance of state transportation facilities such as highways and the ferry system.