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Truckee River Symposium 2011, Sept. 27-29, 2011

Save the Date! September 27-29, 2011 at DRI.The purpose of this symposium is to communicate, investigate and evaluate science along the river.

Discussions will provide an understanding of Truckee River's important role in supporting northern Nevada and eastern California, while serving as a valuable resource to others who utilize the river. One element of this program is to provide all groups who work within the watershed a comprehensive understanding of what their colleagues are doing, and to bring critical Truckee River issues to the table for discussion. Drought, water quality, water resources, technical considerations and ecological elements will be discussed, with a mix of research, environmental, management and recreational perspectives included.

Water Locator Tool

This "Water Locator Tool" website is designed to help you locate your receiving water and to determine whether that waterbody is considered "impaired" under Section 303(d) of the Clean Water Act.

This information is needed to properly fill out your NOI. You will be using your facility address and/or facility lattitude-longitude to determine which waterbodies are closest to your facility location.

The Water Locator Tool leads you through a series of steps to help you answer the questions in your Notice of Intent (NOI) regarding your receiving water.

Visit the website for the NOI form.

Waxman Report: EPA ‘Decimated’ Clean Water Act

By Mike Lillis 12/16/08, The Washington Independent.

California Rep. Henry Waxman (D) might be headed for the chairmanship of the House energy committee, but not before he gets a final shot at the Bush administration from atop the oversight panel.

A report released today from Waxman’s office — a joint effort with the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, headed by Rep. James Oberstar (D-Minn.) — found that the Environmental Protection Agency has shown a lax interest in enforcing the Clean Water Act in recent years, leading to hundreds of instances when investigations have been neglected and waterways have been threatened. From Waxman’s statement:

Our investigation reveals that the clean water program has been decimated as hundreds of enforcement cases have been dropped, downgraded, delayed, or never brought in the first place. We need to work with the new Administration to restore the effectiveness and integrity to this vital program.

The controversy surrounds a 2006 Supreme Court ruling on the Clean Water Act (Rapanos v. United States), which restricted traditional interpretations of the law by requiring the EPA and other federal agencies to show that a waterway is a “significant nexus” to “traditional navigable waters” before officials can apply the environmental protections under the act. Following the Bush administration’s interpretation of that vague ruling, Waxman found, the EPA has whitewashed hundreds of potential violations.

The effects, according to the findings, are nationwide. The EPA branch in Dallas, for example, reported in January that it had 76 cases of confirmed oil spills, “but no follow-up for penalties or corrective action has been sought due to difficulties asserting jurisdiction post-Rapanos.”

That same month, officials in the EPA’s Denver office sent notice to the agency’s headquarters that, “We literally have hundreds of OPA [Oil Pollution Act] cases in our ‘no further action’ file due to the Rapanos decision, most of which are oil spill cases.”

Another example: Last February, an official in the EPA’s San Francisco office announced that the agency was abandoning a case against a potential Clean Water Act violator, explaining the reason thusly:

It is time to pull the plug on keeping this case on life support. With the march of time largely attributable to the impact on the case by Senor Rapanos and his merry band of supreme court justices we had lost many many violations due to statute of limitations . . . . So we will withdraw the referral, and save our ammo for another fight.

Federal Agencies Revise Guidance to Protect Wetlands and Streams

*Agencies Revise Guidance to Protect Wetlands and Streams *

**EPA Contact: Enesta Jones, (202) 564-7873 or 4355 / jones.enesta@epa.gov
Army Contacts: Doug Garman, (202) 761-1807 or Gene Pawlik, (202) 761-7690

(Washington, D.C. - Dec. 3, 2008) The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Department of the Army are issuing revised guidance to ensure America's wetlands, streams and other waters are better protected under the Clean Water Act (CWA). The guidance clarifies the geographic scope of jurisdiction under the CWA.

"We are providing improved guidance today to ensure the information is in place to fully protect the nation's streams and wetlands under the Clean Water Act," said Benjamin H. Grumbles, EPA's assistant administrator for water. "The guidance builds upon our experiences and provides consistent direction to our staff and the public."

"We are committed to protecting America's aquatic resources as required by the Clean Water Act and in accordance with the Supreme Court decision," said John Paul Woodley Jr., Assistant Secretary of the Army (Civil Works). "This revised interagency guidance will enable the agencies to make clear, consistent, and predictable jurisdictional determinations within the scope of the Clean Water Act."

The revised guidance replaces previous policy issued in June 2007 and clarifies a June 2006 Supreme Court decision in Rapanos v. United States regarding the scope of the agencies' jurisdiction under the CWA. The guidance follows the agencies' evaluation of more than 18,000 jurisdictional determinations and review of more than 66,000 comments.

For more information on this guidance, please visit website below.

Donner Lake escapes the scrutiny Tahoe gets

By Greyson Howard / Sierra Sun

TRUCKEE - It's just a fact of life: Donner Lake plays second fiddle to Lake Tahoe.

"At the watershed council, we like to say Donner Lake is in the glory shadow of Lake Tahoe," said Lisa Wallace, executive director of the Truckee River Watershed Council. "If it was further away from Tahoe, I think it would be really famous."

But the attention deficit isn't just in the minds of tourists - it's also in the amount of scientific scrutiny the body of water receives. Whereas Lake Tahoe has its own clarity standards, goals and even its own governing entity (the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency, or TRPA), Donner Lake doesn't have its own standards or objectives. There is no DRPA.Instead, the lake is lumped into Truckee River watershed standards from the Lahontan Regional Water Quality Control Board, said Lauri Kemper, supervising engineer with the board. In fact, Kemper said, Lahontan has no monitoring on Donner Lake compared with the collaborative work on Lake Tahoe of the University of California, Davis, Lahontan and the TRPA. "Lake Tahoe gets more attention because it is federally designated an Outstanding National Water Resource for its extraordinary clarity, purity and unique situation," Kemper said. "But Donner is an important part of the watershed."

Tim Tweedie, a 25-year resident of Donner Lake, has his own observations of the lake over the years. "I am just concerned with the water quality," said Tweedie, who has collected bags of litter from the lake. "When I dive in the water, the distance I can see is less each year." Tweedie said that although fees are being collected and money spent attempting to catch sediment before it reaches Donner Lake, with no baseline water quality data to measure improvements or setbacks, no one knows what good these efforts are doing. One type of litter Tweedie has collected from the lake recently has been fireworks debris. "I love (the fireworks), but is it good for the lake?" Tweedie said.

Steve Randall, general manager of the Truckee-Donner Recreation and Park District, said the company that runs the annual fireworks show over West End Beach has to clean up after itself. District workers also go back the next day to check, Randall said, and any fireworks that are missed are biodegradable.

Kemper said the Water Quality Control Board studied the effects of fireworks in Lake Tahoe and found that trash is a bigger issue than any chemicals the fireworks might contain. Wallace questioned whether trash is the biggest problem."Between stormwater runoff, erosion and trash, if we were to rank these things, would we focus on litter first? We would want to start at the highest impacts," Wallace said.

The watershed council, along with the U.S. Forest Service and the Truckee Donner Land Trust, has plans under way to restore Negro Canyon, which Wallace said is feeding tons of sediment into Donner Lake through Gregory Creek.  "We'll be launching that project in the next three or four weeks," Wallace said.

Billy Mack Canyon to the west also carries sediment into the lake, drawing on sand used on Interstate 80 that ends up in Summit and Frog creeks, she said.  "There is literally 6 to 8 feet of sand in the canyon in some places," she said....

For entire article, please visit website.

Placer County (Truckee River) Stormwater Quality Program/Managament Plans (SWMP)

Placer County Public Works
3091 County Center Dr.
Auburn, CA 95603

State asks locals to watch the watershed

Plan will monitor sediment flowing into the Truckee River
By Julie Brown/Sierra Sun
March 6, 2008, 11:49 AM

Placer County and the Town of Truckee are partnering to develop a comprehensive strategy to monitor the water quality of the Truckee River watershed and combat sediment that is clouding the river.

But first, they are looking to the local community to see what monitoring efforts are already underway.

“Our job is to look at the big picture,” said Bill Schell, contract manager with the Placer County stormwater quality division. “And coordinate [the data] so it all makes sense, and it’s consistent and timely. [A comprehensive monitoring plan] gives us a better pulse of what’s happening on the river, itself.”

Because of the levels of sediment in the river — in addition to the importance of the Truckee River for drinking water, agriculture, restoring groundwater supplies and recreation — the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recognizes the Truckee as an “impaired” river.

The monitoring plan, which was issued to Placer County and the Town of Truckee as a technical directive by the State of California’s Lahontan Regional Water Quality Control Board, will ultimately pinpoint where sediment is entering the Truckee River watershed.

For entire article, please visit the website.

Truckee River TMDL case study (historical document, 1994)

EPA TMDL Case Study, EPA 841-F-94-006, August 1994, Number 13

Documentation of original load allocations of N, P, and TDS as well as one wasteload allocation in the watershed.

Please visit website for information.

Truckee Meadows Regional Stormwater Quality Management Program

Truckee Meadows Regional Stormwater Quality Management Program

This site contains copies of the draft guidance documents for the Truckee Meadows region (including: Draft Regional Low Impact Development manual, Construction site BMPs, and the Structural Controls Design Manual - all in pdf format).


-as well as regulatory permitting information, descriptions of BMPs for all industries, and more watershed information available in the watershed mapserver and watershed assessments.

Please visit the website to view contents.

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