WVEC Action Alert

Submit Your Comments on WV’s Water Quality Standards

West Virginia Environmental Council
Action Alert
Aug 5, 2016 View / Comment Online Donate
Submit Your Comments on WV’s Water Quality Standards
Comments due by August 9, 2016Kids in waterWater Quality Standards are the legal basis for controlling the amount of pollution entering our waters. They are designed to protect and maintain water quality for safe use and enjoyment.Through August 9, you have the chance to provide input during the public comment process.The state updates their water quality standards every three years. This “Triennial Review” is underway now and the state has proposed several changes to the standards. Some of the proposed changes raise concerns because they will allow more pollution in our water.You can read about the proposed changes below and click here to view our Triennial Review fact sheet.We reject the proposal to allow removal of Category A drinking water protection through the permitting process. We support protecting all waters as current or future drinking water sources and oppose any rollback of this long-standing policy.We reject changes to the “critical design flow” that would allow more carcinogens into our water. Critical design flow is used to estimate a water’s flow rate, or how much water is moving through a stream, to determine how much pollution a stream can hold without posing a threat to human health. WVDEP proposes to change flow rate calculation to a system that is not as protective during low water or drought conditions, allowing for higher, more dangerous concentrations of pollutants into our water. We recommend WVDEP work with the USGS to conduct a statewide study to determine the best estimates for flow.

We support increased statewide monitoring for bacteria in our waters. Bacteria is the most abundant pollutant in our rivers and can make water contact recreation dangerous. We support using E. Coli, instead of Fecal Coliform, as the new bacterial indicator as long as a procedure is in place to monitor both indicators during the transition process, and that frequency of sampling is adequate to measure a monthly average value.

Comments on the proposed changes are due by Tuesday, August 9. We’ve made it easy for you to submit comments, click here and tell the WVDEP you want protective water quality standards!

WVDEP will also hold a public hearing on August 9 at 6pm at 601 57th St. SE, Charleston 25304. Join us in showing support for clean, safe water!

Click here to read the entire set of WVDEP’s proposed revisions to Water Quality Standards.

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