The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency's (Ohio EPA) draft "2020 Integrated Water Quality Monitoring and Assessment Report" was issued and is now available for review and comment through close of business on March 13, 2020. This long-anticipated report indicates the general condition of Ohio's waters and identifies waters that are not meeting water quality goals. The report satisfies the Clean Water Act requirements for both Section 305(b) for biennial reports on the condition of the state's waters and Section 303(d) for a prioritized list of impaired waters. For each impaired water, Ohio EPA typically prepares a total maximum daily load (TMDL) analysis.
The 2020 report is noteworthy, as it identifies as impaired Lake Erie’s western shoreline, western open water and islands, specifically, impairments to public drinking water supply (algae) and recreation (algae), thus committing Ohio EPA to development of a TMDL for these portions of Lake Erie over the next two to three years. The TMDL program, established under Section 303(d) of the Clean Water Act, focuses on identifying and restoring polluted rivers, streams, lakes and other surface water bodies.
Ohio EPA will present additional information about the report through a webinar on March 2, 2020, at 2:00 p.m. More information regarding the report is available here.