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Water Quality Standards Section Water Permits Division Office of Environmental Services Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality December 2, 2010.

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Presentation on theme: "Water Quality Standards Section Water Permits Division Office of Environmental Services Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality December 2, 2010."— Presentation transcript:

1 Water Quality Standards Section Water Permits Division Office of Environmental Services Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality December 2, 2010 Nutrient Criteria Development in Louisiana

2 Overview Nutrient Criteria Development I.Background II.LDEQ’s Plan to Develop Nutrient Criteria III.Evaluation of Approaches (EPA Guidance) IV.LDEQ Data Collection Efforts (Inland Rivers and Streams) V.Data Summary (Inland Rivers & Streams) VI.Other Issues and Studies

3 I. Background Louisiana Water Quality Standards (WQS) Based on and authorized by Clean Water Act (CWA) Section 303(c) CWA Section 304 –Requires EPA to develop criteria as guidance which Louisiana may use in adopting standards WQS are provisions of Louisiana State Law –Authorized by Section 2074 B (1) of the Louisiana Water Control Law of the Environmental Quality Act (Louisiana Revised Statute, L.R.S. 30: )

4 I. Background Role of WQS in WQ Management Set and revise WQS for state waters Used to assess use attainment –305(b) Report Endpoint for: –Total Maximum Daily Loads (TMDLs) –Wasteload Allocations (WLAs) –Load Allocations (LAs) Permit limits

5 I. Background Suspected Causes of Impairment “Top” causes of impairment: –Dissolved oxygen, fecal coliform and nutrients Nutrients: Nitrogen and Phosphorus –DRAFT (d) List –Suspected Impairment in 10 Subsegments –Suspected Sources of Impairment: Natural Conditions Natural Sources On-Site Treatment Systems Site Clearance (Land Development or Redevelopment) Residential Districts Forced Drainage Pumping Upstream Source Source Unknown

6 I. Background Nitrogen (N) and Phosphorus (P) Man-caused contributions to N and P –Overuse of fertilizer (residential and agricultural) –Rainfall flowing over cropland and pastures with no Best Management Practices (BMPs) –Rainfall flowing over urban and suburban areas –Wastewater treatment plants discharge –Overflow from septic systems

7 II. LDEQ’s Plan for Nutrient Criteria Development EPA’s 304(a) Technical Guidance: –Water Body Specific Rivers and Streams, Lakes and Reservoirs, Wetlands, and Estuaries –Describes several criteria development methods Statistical and Relationships –Recognizes an Ecoregional Framework Ecoregion = area of relative homogeniety in ecological characteristics “Reference” condition – “least-impacted”

8 II. LDEQ’s Plan for Nutrient Criteria Development States need a plan to: –Develop the information set –Assess reference condition for nutrients –Develop criteria –Determine how to apply numeric criteria State plans considered by EPA to be commitment on the States part to: –Develop numeric nutrient criteria, and –Adopt quantitative nutrient standards

9 II. LDEQ’s Plan for Nutrient Criteria Development LDEQ submitted 1 st version of plan in December 2001 –Continued working toward development of ecoregion-based numeric nutrient criteria for LA water bodies Submitted an updated and expanded version in December 2004 Accepted as ‘mutually agreed upon’ by EPA on June 20, portal/tabid/69/Default.aspx

10 II. LDEQ’s Plan Ecoregional Approach

11 II. LDEQ’s Plan Water Body Types Freshwater –Inland Rivers and Streams –Inland Wetlands –Lakes and Reservoirs Estuarine and Coastal Waters –Brackish and Saline Wetlands –Nearshore Gulf of Mexico Big Rivers and Floodplains Boundary Waters –Sabine, Red, Ouachita, and Pearl –Mississippi River and Atchafalaya River Basin

12 II. LDEQ Plan Research in Louisiana Water Bodies Project 1 “Approaches for Developing Attainable Nutrient Criteria for Louisiana Waterbodies: Rivers and Streams” LSU (Lane & Day) Project 2 “Relationship Between Nutrients, DO Conditions, Habitat, and Fish Assemblage Composition in Louisiana Streams” LSU (Kelso & Rutherford) Project 3 “Effects-based Tools for Nutrient Criteria Development” EPA 6/USGS (Kiesling) Project 4 Louisiana Freshwater Wetlands Draft Data Report – Classification, Literature Review, and Development of Nutrient Criteria LSU (Hunter et al) Project 5 Red River Nutrient Criteria Development Project, Phases I-III University of Arkansas/USDA/EPA 6 (Haggard and Loving) AR, LA, OK, NM and TX collaboration on nutrient criteria for the Red River Basin

13 III. Evaluation of Approaches Summary of EPA Guidance Methods 1.EPA Level III Ecoregion Nutrient Criteria Recommendations based on 25 th percentile of all streams in Louisiana 2.Evaluate the 75 th percentile of reference streams in Louisiana USEPA Nutrient Criteria Technical Guidance: Rivers and Streams All Streams Reference Streams 75% 25%

14 III. Evaluation of Approaches Summary of EPA Guidance Methods 3.Frequency distribution of all streams in Louisiana for arbitrary determination of percentile breakpoints for least- and most- impacted streams USEPA Nutrient Criteria Technical Guidance: Rivers and Streams

15 III. Evaluation of Approaches Summary of EPA Guidance Methods 4.Trophic state classification (eutrophic, mesotrophic, and oligotrophic) to define degree of plant material in a water body using percentiles and cluster analysis 5.Empirical models (simple and multiple linear regression) to determine relationships between nutrients and algal biomass 6.Impact of land use on in-stream nutrient concentrations 7.Identify relationships between dissolved oxygen, nutrients, and chlorophyll a

16 III. Evaluation of Approaches Lane and Day (2008) Describe reference conditions for rivers and streams in four targeted inland ecoregions Use previously collected and recent data for nutrients, dissolved oxygen, and other parameters in identified water bodies Analyze data and approaches for evaluating nutrient conditions in the least-impacted reference streams Compare water quality, primary productivity, and the EPA recommended variables TN, TP, Chlorophyll a, Transparency

17 IV. LDEQ Data Collection Efforts Inland Rivers and Streams Historical data collection –1991 through 1996, 2 times in year (not monthly) Data gap analysis –Data Inventory Recent data collection –Monthly –Oct 2008 through Oct 2009 Parameters measured: –Continuous Monitoring –Water Quality –Canopy Cover –Habitat Assessments –Biological (Fish)

18 V. Data Summary for Inland Rivers and Streams Total Phosphorus (TP) Total Nitrogen (TN) –Sum of Nitrate-Nitrite (NO3NO2) and Total Kjeldahl Nitrogen (TKN) Chlorophyll a (CHL A)

19 V. Data Summary Additional Considerations Seasonal Differences Drainage Area –Small –Medium –Large

20 VI. Other Issues and Studies Regulatory Issues/Rulemaking Requirements –Fiscal and Economic Impact Statements (FEIS) Required by L.R.S. 49: 953 for all rules (including WQS) whether or not there is a fiscal and economic impact –Economic Cost/Benefit and Small Business Flexibility Act No. 820 of 2008 Regular Session –Enacted R.S. 49: –Requires state agencies to prepare an economic impact statement and a regulatory flexibility analysis prior to adoption of any proposed rule affecting small businesses Newer requirements not included in 2006 Nutrient Criteria Development Plan and may expand time necessary for promulgation process

21 VI. Other Issues and Studies Gulf of Mexico Alliance (GOMA) Action Plan II Action 1: Characterize Nutrients and Nutrient Impacts to Coastal Ecosystems in the Gulf of Mexico Action 2: Coordinate Efforts to Support State Development of Nutrient Criteria for Gulf of Mexico Coastal Ecosystems Action 3: Increase Regional Coordination to Reduce Hypoxia in Gulf of Mexico Coastal Waters and Estuaries Action 4: Reduce Excess Nitrogen and Phosphorus Inputs to Gulf of Mexico Coastal Waters and Estuaries

22 VI. Other Issues and Studies Coastal Protection and Restoration FY Expenditures exceed $1 Billion Protection –Hurricane Buffers, Levees, etc. Restoration –Wetlands, Diversion, etc.

23 Nutrient Criteria Development in Louisiana CONTACT INFORMATION Dugan Sabins Steph Braden Kristine Pintado Amanda Vincent ) Water Quality Standards Section Water Permits Division Office of Environmental Services Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality


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