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Anacostia Watershed Organics and Metals TMDL

Monday, October 17, 2011

The highly urbanized Anacostia River watershed drains approximately 176 square miles of portions of Maryland and the District. The Anacostia River and tributaries were listed in 1998 for elevated levels of organics and metals in fish tissue and sediment. The total maximum daily loads (TMDLs) were approved for the Anacostia River and its tributaries for parameters identified in the table below on September 29, 2003 (amended October 16, 2003). 

The TMDLs were challenged in Friends of the Earth v. EPA 446 F.3d 140 (D.C. Cir. 2006) because the loads were not expressed in daily loads.  Following the case, a settlement agreement was reached between US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Anacostia Riverkeeper, Friends of the Earth, and Potomac Riverkeeper (Case No.: 1:09-cv-00098-JDB of January 15, 2009).  To meet the settlement requirements, EPA will revise the applicable TMDLs to express daily loads.  The District Department of the Environment (DDOE) is working with EPA to collect/analyze data and revise the TMDLs for toxic parameters.  The table below lists the TMDL water bodies and pollutant pair with the current impairment status in the District’s 2014 Integrated Report.  In the table below, those water body/pollutant pairs categorized in 4a will be revised.  However, in several water bodies, recent data was insufficient to support an impairment determination, or the samples met water quality standards and, therefore, the water body/pollutant was removed from the impaired list for a particular pollutant.

The 2003 final approved TMDL documents for organics and metals throughout the Anacostia watershed are included below.  The revised documents will be posted when available.