introducing the chesapeake bay tmdl process to virginia n.
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INTRODUCING THE CHESAPEAKE BAY TMDL PROCESS TO VIRGINIA. November 2009. Chesapeake Bay Ecosystem. Largest U.S. estuary Six-state, 64,000 square mile watershed 10,000 miles of shoreline (longer then entire U.S. west coast) Over 3,600 species of plants, fish and other animals

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chesapeake bay ecosystem
Chesapeake Bay Ecosystem
  • Largest U.S. estuary
  • Six-state, 64,000 square mile watershed
  • 10,000 miles of shoreline (longer then entire U.S. west coast)
  • Over 3,600 species of plants, fish and other animals
  • Average depth: 21 feet
  • $750 million contribution annually to local economies
  • Home to 17 million people (and counting)
  • 77,000 principally family farms
  • Declared “national treasure” by President Obama



Main Sources of Pollution

  • Agriculture – animal manure, commercial fertilizer
  • Urban/suburban runoff – a growing problem
  • Air pollution – tailpipes, power plants
  • Wastewater – sewage treatment plants
new approach to restoration performance and accountability
New Approach to RestorationPerformance and Accountability
  • Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL):

Mandatory ‘pollution diet’

  • Chesapeake Bay Executive Order:

New era of federal leadership

  • Two-Year Milestones:

State/local commitments to action

  • Consequences:

Federal monitoring; consequences for lagging progress

chesapeake bay tmdl
Chesapeake Bay TMDL
  • EPA sets pollution diet and oversees its achievement
  • Restrictions on nitrogen, phosphorus and sediment
  • Limits sufficient to meet states’ Bay clean water standards
taking responsibility for load reductions
Taking Responsibility for Load Reductions

Identify basinwide target loads

EPA, States, DC

Identify major basin by

jurisdiction target loads

EPA, States, DC

Identify tidal segment watershed, county and source sector target loads

States, DC, local governments & local partners

pollution diet for each impaired tidal water segment
Pollution Diet for Each Impaired Tidal Water Segment
  • Clean Water Act requires a TMDL for each impaired waterbody
  • MD, VA, DE, DC have listed most of the Bay’s 92 tidal water segments as impaired
  • All 6 watershed states must be part of reaching the prescribed diet for each of these Bay tidal water segments
restoring virginia s rivers bay
Restoring Virginia’s Rivers/Bay
  • Virginia is down-stream/down-tide of others
    • Must do its share of reductions, but can’t restore tidal rivers and Bay water quality alone!
  • James, York Rivers must also address local water quality problems
    • Tidal York River has oxygen and bay grasses problems
    • Tidal James River has algae and bay grasses problems
  • Bringing Bay restoration to where local decisions are made that impact water quality
    • Counties, cities, towns, conservation districts
  • Opportunity to build on VA Clean-up Plan
    • Factor in local TMDLs, local water quality needs
epa consequences
EPA Consequences

Will be outlined in EPA letter this fall. May include:

Assigning more stringent pollution reductions to point sources

Objecting to state-issued NPDES permits

Limiting or prohibiting new or expanded discharges of nutrients and sediment

Withholding, conditioning or reallocating federal grant funds

decision made
Decision Made….
  • PSC approved preliminary basinwide target load of 200 million pounds per year nitrogen and 15 million pounds per year phosphorus

These Basinwide Target Loads Will Change Due to…

  • Upgraded watershed model (Phase 5.2 to 5.3)
  • Filter feeder inclusion in the WQ model
  • SAV/clarity target load analysis
  • Atmospheric deposition allocation and impact on ocean load
  • Trade-offs between N and P
  • Loading reductions needed to meet local Bay segments
relative effectiveness is a combination of watershed delivery and estuarine delivery
Relative Effectiveness is a combination of Watershed Delivery and Estuarine Delivery

Low Delivery



High Delivery

Potomac Estuarine


James Estuarine



0.22 mg/l

0.53 mg/l

Option B

20 percent slope

state total target loads option b selected by psc
State Total Target LoadsOPTION B SELECTED BY PSC



All loads are in millions of pounds per year.

va basin target loads million pounds year
VA Basin Target Loads*[Million Pounds/Year]

-----Total Phosphorus ---------

--------Total Nitrogen--------

*These target loads are likely to change based on EPA’s new modeling; allocation loads for the basins

are expected to be set in spring of 2010; EPA’s current plan is to adopt Bay TMDL by 12/31/10.

watershed implementation plan expectations
Watershed Implementation Plan Expectations
  • Identify reductions by river basin, tidal segment watershed, county, source sector
  • Identify gaps and strategy for building local capacity
  • Commit to develop 2-year milestones at the county scale
  • Develop contingencies
watershed implementation plans approved along with tmdl
Watershed Implementation PlansApproved along with TMDL
  • States must develop Plans to demonstrate to EPA “reasonable assurance” that allocations assigned to each source sector will be met
  • Allocations will need to be assigned to these source sectors within each basin:
epa s response to concerns with short timeframe to develop plans
EPA’s Response to Concerns with Short Timeframe to Develop Plans
  • Defer some planning elements to a later date
  • Phase I Plan: Target loads by source sector and segment drainage area to inform Bay TMDL WLAs and LAs
    • Preliminary: June 1, 2010
    • Draft: August 1, 2010
    • Final: November 1, 2010
  • Phase II Plan: Include local area target loads and identify specific controls to be implemented by 2017
    • Draft: June 1, 2011
    • Final: No later than November 1, 2011
  • 2-year Milestones: Near-term, specific commitments and actions
    • Iterative: 2012 – 2013; 2014 – 2015; etc.
  • Phase III Plan: Update 2018 - 2025 implementation efforts
    • Final: No later than January 1, 2017
staged implementation
Staged Implementation
  • Stage 1: Current Loads – Interim Target
    • 2011 – 2017
  • Stage 2: Interim – Final Target
    • 2018 – no later than 2025
  • Less details on Stage 2 if States and District commit to update Plans by 2017
    • Potential actions that will result in final target loads to provide assurance that final TMDL will be achieved
    • Recognize 2018 – 2025 milestones may change
  • Specific implementation efforts adapted and assessed through 2-year milestones
interim target load
Interim Target Load
  • States and District must have controls in place to meet interim target by 2017
    • Demonstrates on track to meet final target load by 2025
    • EPA assesses if 2-year milestones on schedule to meet interim and final target loads and imposes consequences as necessary
  • 60% between 2008 loads and target loads
    • Basinwide: 233 mil lbs/yr N and 15.5 mil lbs/yr P
    • Represents ~18% decrease of N and ~5% decrease of P compared to 2008 loads
    • Corresponds to modeled water quality improvements
    • With greater justification, EPA may accept interim target of no less than 50% between current and target loads

Basinwide Interim Target Load

EPA Will Assess if


Reductions are on Schedule to Meet Target Loads


<Interim Target



Assumes Upfront Program-Building and Future Reductions

Assumes Constant Reduction Over Time

Assumes Upfront Low-Hanging Fruit and More Difficult Future Reductions


Example: Projected Nitrogen Delivery from

Major Basin in Each Jurisdiction by Source Sector

Propose new legislative authorities

Implement regulatory controls

Examples of Some Planned Controls

Propose increased budget to legislature

Increased program budget

Increased controls




Load Reduction







Milestones for Assessing Progress

Stage 1 Implementation

Stage 2 Implementation

  • Also divide jurisdiction load by 303(d) segment drainage area and, by November 2011, local area
  • Attain jurisdiction-wide load reductions by the interim target, or justify why can still meet final target
  • Jurisdiction would determine desired 2-year schedule to meet interim and final target loads
  • EPA first evaluates milestones based on consistency with jurisdiction target load. EPA accepts shifts among source sectors, basins, segment drainages, and local areas if jurisdiction target load is met and local and Bay water quality goals are achieved
va public meeting schedule
VA Public Meeting Schedule
  • December 14 – 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm Fairfax County
    • Falls Church High School, Little Theater, 7521 Jaguar Trail, Fall Church,
  • December 15 - 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm James City County
    • 2007 Legacy Hall 4301 New Town Avenue Williamsburg
  • December 16 - 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm Harrisonburg Area
    • Spotswood High School 368 Blazer Drive Penn Laird
  • December 17 - 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm Fredericksburg
    • Wingate Inn 20 Sandford Drive, Fredericksburg
proposed stakeholder process in virginia
Proposed Stakeholder Processin Virginia

*2-Pronged Approach*

  • Smaller “scoping group” produce a strawman of options – [for DCR source categories]
  • Larger, more active, Stakeholder Group involved throughout the process
impacts on deq programs
Impacts on DEQ Programs
  • DEQ will begin allocation process with allocations for wastewater plants identified in VA-WQMP reg
  • EPA will approve allocations among source sectors based on reasonable assurance, so allocations in final TMDL are unknown
  • Also, uncertain about expectations for CAFOs and Industrial Storm Water