EPA has approved Iowa’s 2012 list of impaired waters requiring Total Maximum Daily Load calculations. The Iowa Department Natural Resources (IDNR) submitted its impaired waters list to EPA on April 1, 2013, for review and approval as required by the Clean Water Act.
“EPA appreciates Iowa’s efforts to rigorously monitor and assess its waters so that IDNR can prioritize its development of pollution reduction plans,” said Karl Brooks, regional administrator. “This process is an important first step toward improved water quality. The Iowa impaired waters list documents IDNR’s priorities for restoration activities. We look forward to working with IDNR and the citizens of Iowa to restore Iowa’s lakes, rivers and streams.”
In today’s decision, EPA approved the removal of 73 water bodies and the addition of 78 water bodies. Today’s action brings the total number of impaired waters on the state’s list to 479.
A water body is placed on the impaired waters list when monitoring finds that pollutant levels prevent the lake, river or stream from “attaining its beneficial uses.” A water body can be removed from the list if it meets its beneficial uses or if a pollution reduction plan for a water body is approved by EPA. Beneficial uses in Iowa include human recreation, water supply and maintaining healthy aquatic life.
EPA’s April 25, 2013, decision letter provides a more detailed description of EPA’s review and the basis for this action. The decision letter, including the final 2012 impaired waters list, is available at www.epa.gov/region7/newsevents/legal/.