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TMDL Process

  • Identify waters that do not meet water quality standards. In this process, the state identifies the particular pollutant(s) causing the water not to meet standards.
     
  • Prioritize waters that do not meet standards for TMDL development (for example, waters with high naturally occurring "pollution" will fall to the bottom of the list), and
     
  • Establish TMDLs (set the amount of pollutant that needs to be reduced and assign responsibilities) for priority waters to meet state water quality standards. A separate TMDL is set to address each pollutant with concentrations over the standards. 
     
  • Develop strategies for reducing water pollution and assess progress made during implementation of the strategy. This is when a watershed partnership most likely will want to get involved. If the partnership has already developed a plan of action, it should be shared with the state. In fact, several states have incorporated watershed partnership plans in the state's strategy for specific TMDLs. 

Click on the thumbnail for a TMDL process chart.

TMDL process chart