Agency Publishes Draft 'TMDLs to Stormwater Handbook'

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Office of Wetlands, Oceans and Watersheds and Office of Wastewater Management have jointly issued a draft "TMDLs to Stormwater Handbook," available for public comment at http://www.epa.gov/owow/tmdl/stormwater/#tmdlresources.

"Stormwater runoff is a major threat to water quality in urban and coastal watersheds across the country," said Assistant Administrator for Water Benjamin H. Grumbles. "This Draft Handbook is an important new tool to connect key regulatory and monitoring programs under the Clean Water Act and reduce impairments. We look forward to strengthening this draft with input from interested stakeholders who share our goal of protecting and restoring the nation's waters."

Currently there are thousands of Clean Water Act section 303(d) waters listed as impaired for stormwater-source pollutants such as pathogens, nutrients, sediments, and metals. This Draft Handbook provides a technical reference for TMDL practitioners and permit writers on current methods being used to develop more detailed stormwater-source TMDL allocations, TMDL implementation plans including best management practices and methods for translating TMDL allocations into NPDES stormwater permit requirements. The Handbook also provides background information on the components of these programs but assumes that the reader has a working knowledge of both TMDLs and National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System stormwater permits.

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