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IEC’s 2010 Integrated Report

March 31, 2010
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By April first of even numbered years, states, tribes, and interstate commissions must submit an Integrated Report to the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) satisfying the requirements of both sections 305(b) and 303(d) of the clean water Act (CWA). Section 305 (b) provide for the protection and propagation of a balanced population of fish, shellfish, and wildlife and allow recreational activities in and on them. Section 303(d) calls for the identification and listing of impaired and threatened waters, including water targeted for Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) development, its well as the pollutants causing the impairment and their success.

The Integrated Report, prepared by the Interstate Environmental Commission (hereinafter the Commission or IEC) addresses Clean Water Act 305(b) and 303(d) requirements. Additional information from the Integrated Reports of the Commission's member states ­­-- New York, New Jersey and Connecticut --- needs to complement this report to fully satisfy 303(d) requirements, since authority in the generating and enforcing TMDLs --- rests, in most times, with the Commission's member states. IEC does not produce a 303(d) list of its own and thus does not require the public noticing process for publishing a 303(d) list.

In this report, waters of the Interstate Environmental District (hereinafter the district) are partitioned into assessment units. Each assessment unit is assessed in terms of how well it supports the uses assigned to it. The Uses assessed are: Aquatic Life Support, Fish Consumption, Shellfish Consumption, Primary Contact Recreation and Secondary Contact Recreation. Each use assessment determines the percentage of the assessment unit's total area that could be placed into one of the five general categories: Fully Supporting, Fully Supporting but Threatened, Not Supporting, Not Assessed-Use Not Assigned and Not Assessed-Insufficient  Data. The process is repeated for all uses assigned to an assessment unit. District waters are then further classified depending on their cumulative support of their assigned uses (i.e., support all uses or support some, but not all, etc.).