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Notice of Public Meeting and Solicitation of Public Comment - Draft Revised Total Maximum Daily Loads for Organics and Metals in the Anacostia River Watershed

Friday, July 9, 2021

The Director of the Department of Energy and Environment (the Department) is submitting for public review and comment the draft revised Total Maximum Daily Loads (TMDLs) for organics and metals in the Anacostia River watershed.

The revisions are a result of a challenge in federal District Court to the 2003 TMDLs for failing to include daily load expressions. On January 15, 2009, the Anacostia Riverkeeper, Friends of the Earth, and Potomac Riverkeeper filed a complaint (Case No.: 1:09-cv-00098-JDB) that certain District TMDLs did not include a daily load expression as required by Friends of the Earth vs. the Environmental Protection Agency, 446 F.3d 140, 144 (D.C. Cir. 2006). The District Court ultimately vacated the TMDLs, but delayed vacatur to allow the District and EPA sufficient time to establish and approve replacement TMDLs.  The vacatur remains through September 30, 2021.

The draft revised TMDLs were developed collaboratively with the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Maryland Department of the Environment. The revisions provide daily organics and metals loading expressions that attain water quality criteria in the District’s water quality standards. The revised TMDLs will be subject to approval by the EPA. 

The draft revised TMDLs address organics and metals, specifically organochlorine pesticides (chlordane, dieldrin, heptachlor epoxide, dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT) and its breakdown products), polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), and metal (arsenic, copper, and zinc) impairments in the Anacostia River, its tributaries, and Kingman Lake. They are being proposed to replace the TMDLs for organics and metals in the Anacostia River, Fort Chaplin Tributary, Fort Davies Tributary, Fort Dupont Creek, Fort Stanton Tributary, Hickey Run, Nash Run, Popes Branch, Texas Avenue Tributary, and Watts Branch. They include heptachlor epoxide TMDLs to address listings of impaired water bodies in both Maryland and the District. These TMDLs were initially approved by EPA in 2003.

Public Meeting and Comment

The Department invites the public to participate in a virtual public meeting, being convened by DOEE, EPA, and MDE, and submit comments on the draft revised Total Maximum Daily Loads for Organics and Metals in the Anacostia River Watershed

Meeting Date: Tuesday, July 22, 2021
Time: 10:00 AM – 11.30 AM

Web Access:
Meeting number: 161 644 5144
Password: TMDL (8635 from phones)
Link: https://mwcog.webex.com/mwcog/j.php?MTID=m6870425f32af7ebcb539d49a0c55466a

Phone Access:
+1-202-860-2110 United States Toll (Washington D.C.)

Access code: 161 644 5144

The 30-day public comment period will begin on July 09, 2021 and the deadline for submitting comments is 5:00pm on August 07, 2021. During that period, a person may obtain a copy of the draft revised TMDLs by any of the following means:

  • Download from the attachments section below.
  • Email a request to [email protected] with “Request copy of TMDLs for Organics and Metals” in the subject line.
  • Write the Department at 1200 First Street NE, 5th Floor, Washington, DC 20002, “Attn George E. Onyullo, RE: Request copy of TMDLs for Organics and Metals” on the outside of the envelope.

Person(s) may submit written comment(s) by email with a subject line of “Comments on TMDLs for Organics and Metals,” to George E. Onyullo at [email protected]. Mail comments marked “Comments on TMDLs for Organics and Metals” may also be hand delivered or mailed to the Department’s offices at the address above. All comments received during the comment period will be considered and the draft document may be revised accordingly prior to its submittal to EPA for approval.