Water Quality

ORS 468B.025
Prohibited activities


Except as provided in ORS 468B.050 (Water quality permit) or 468B.053 (Alternatives to obtaining water quality permit), no person shall:


Cause pollution of any waters of the state or place or cause to be placed any wastes in a location where such wastes are likely to escape or be carried into the waters of the state by any means.


Discharge any wastes into the waters of the state if the discharge reduces the quality of such waters below the water quality standards established by rule for such waters by the Environmental Quality Commission.


No person shall violate the conditions of any waste discharge permit issued under ORS 468B.050 (Water quality permit).


Violation of subsection (1) or (2) of this section is a public nuisance. [Formerly 449.079 and then 468.720; 1997 c.286 §5]

See also annotations under ORS 449.079 in permanent edition.

Notes of Decisions

Discharge that violates terms of permit is not separately punishable under ORS 468B.050 as discharge made without permit. Environmental Quality Commission v. City of Coos Bay, 171 Or App 106, 14 P3d 649 (2000)

Person may not discharge waste into state waters if discharge would reduce quality of water below state’s water quality standards unless person has permit from Department of Environmental Quality that specifically authorizes discharge. Tualatin Riverkeepers v. Department of Environmental Quality, 235 Or App 132, 230 P3d 559 (2010), Sup Ct review denied

Attorney General Opinions

Lessee filling tidelands as requiring a permit, (1971) Vol 35, p 844

Law Review Citations

2 EL 99, 181-188 (1971)


Last accessed
May 30, 2023