Monday, March 25, 2013

EPA Adds Impaired Waters To West Virginia 303D List

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has responded to the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection (WVDEP) proposed list of impaired waterways in West Virginia. The list includes 1,176 waterways previously designated as impaired by the State, and an additional 255 waterways identified by EPA, based on the State’s current water quality standards.

In its response, EPA acknowledged WVDEP’s position that it is precluded by Senate Bill No. 562 from evaluating waters for aquatic life uses pending adoption of a new methodology for evaluating waterways. EPA identified the additional waterways, representing more than 1,000 miles of rivers and streams, based on its review of readily available State data. The agency reviewed the information using substantially the same methodology that West Virginia has used to review this type of data in the past.

EPA will publish a notice of the proposed additions in the federal register on or before April 15, which will begin a 30-day public comment period. EPA will review all of the comments and make changes to the proposed list as appropriate.

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