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Water Quality Reports & Publications


Water Quality Laws

Law Citation Brief Description Contact Person
Tennessee Water Quality Control Act 69-3-101 et seq Law establishing Water Resources program. Identifies responsibilities and extent of authority for Commissioner and the Water Quality Control Board. Establishes concept of clean water goals and water quality planning and assessment. Provides for permitting program for discharges to, or alterations of, water of the state. Vojin Janjic
Vojin.Janjic@tn.gov
Tennessee Environmental Protection Fund 68-203-101 Law establishing mechanism for fees to be charged for permits issued by the Division of Water Resources. Lloyd Craig
Lloyd.Craig@tn.gov

Rules

All rule downloads provided by the Secretary of State

Regulation Citation Brief Description Contact Person
Certification of Qualified Hydrologic Professionals 0400-40-17 Establishes qualifications and process for persons to obtain certification as a hydrologic professional for the purpose of identifying streams and wet weather conveyances. Includes requirements for submitting of hydrologic determination reports. Jimmy Smith
Jimmy.R.Smith@tn.gov
General Rules 0400-40-01
Establishes treatment requirements for point source dischargers. Wade Murphy
Wade.Murphy@tn.gov
Plans Submittal, Control of Construction 0400-40-02
This regulation identifies the requirements for Division approval of plans for construction of sewer lines and treatment plant expansions. Phil Simmons
Phil.Simmons@tn.gov
General Water Quality Criteria

2013 Version
0400-40-03
Establishes numeric and narrative criteria for each of the seven classified uses. Additionally, contains Tennessee’s Antidegradation Policy, which identifies scenarios in which degradation can be allowed in surface waters. Note: groundwater criteria are in a separate document available from the Division of Underground Storage Tanks. Greg Denton
Gregory.Denton@tn.gov
Use Classifications for Surface Waters

2013 Version
0400-40-04
Establishes seven classified uses for surface waters. Identifies a combination of uses for each named or unnamed surface water. Note: classified uses for groundwater are established in a separate document available from the Division of Underground Storage Tanks. Greg Denton
Gregory.Denton@tn.gov
Effluent Standards 0400-40-05
This regulation establishes treatment requirements for facilities that discharge to effluent-limited streams. Wade Murphy
Wade.Murphy@tn.gov
UIC Regulations
(Division of Water Supply)
1200-4-6
Establishes permitting process for the discharge of materials into ground water by way of wells and/or sinkholes. Scotty Sorrells
Scotty.Sorrells@tn.gov
Aquatic Resource Alteration Permits 0400-40-07 Establishes permitting process for physical alteration of waters of the state. Includes general permits for several activities including utility line crossings. Jimmy Smith Jimmy.R.Smith@tn.gov
Navigable Waters Permit 0400-40-08
Establishes permitting process for physical alteration of navigable waters not regulated by the Corps of Engineers. This regulation is specific to Reelfoot Lake. Robert Baker
Robert.D.Baker@tn.gov
Water Well Licensing(Division of Water Supply) 1200-4-9
Establishes licensing process for well drillers. Identifies requirements for well construction. Luke Ewing
Luke.Ewing@tn.gov
NPDES General Permits 0400-40-10
Establishes general NPDES permits for certain activities including discharge of industrial stormwater and Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations. Wade Murphy
Wade.Murphy@tn.gov
Environmental Protection Fund Fee Rules 0400-40-11
Establishes fee schedules for different types of permits issued by the Division. Wayne Gregory
Wayne.Gregory@tn.gov
Pretreatment Requirements 0400-40-14
Establishes responsibilities of State, and local government, industry and the public to implement the National Pretreatment Standards. Yatasha Moore
Yatasha.Moore@tn.gov
Biosolids Management 0400-40-15 These rules establish standards, which consist of general requirements, contaminant limits, management practices, and operational standards, for the land application of biosolids generated during the treatment of domestic sewage in a wastewater treatment works. Robert G. O'Dette, M.S., P.E
Robert.Odette@tn.gov
Public Sewerage Systems 0400-40-16
Establishes supervision requirements during the construction and operation of public sewage systems. Phil Simmons
Phil.Simmons@tn.gov

General Information and Planning Documents

Publication Brief Description Contact Person
Tennessee’s Watershed Management Approach A brochure describing the watershed management approach as envisioned and implemented by the Division of Water Resources. Sherry Wang
Sherry.Wang@tn.gov
Bacteriological and Fishing Advisories in Tennessee List of streams and reservoirs where fish consumption or human contact advisories have been issued. Greg Denton
Gregory.Denton@tn.gov
Stream Mitigation Guidelines

July 1, 2004
This document provides general guidance and discussion for compensatory mitigation of permanent impacts to streams. Jimmy Smith
Jimmy.R.Smith@tn.gov

Water Quality Assessment Publications

New Publications

Publication Brief Description Contact Person
Proposed Final 2014 303(d) List

Public Comments with TDEC Responses

GIS Web Application

October 2014

In July of 2014, the Department of Environment and Conservation developed a Draft 2014 303(d) List as required by the federal Clean Water Act. This document is a compilation of the lakes, rivers, and streams in Tennessee that fail to meet one or more water quality standards. Where appropriate, each listed waterbody has been prioritized for a specialized study called a Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL). The department accepted comments about the draft through August 29, 2014 and held a public meeting on August 12.

The Proposed Final 303(d) List was submitted to EPA for approval, along with comments and responses.

Greg Denton
Gregory.Denton@tn.gov
Final 2012 303(d) List

January 2014
A final list of streams, rivers, reservoirs, and lakes that do not meet water quality standards in 2012. Provides pollutant information and TMDL prioritization. Responses to Public Comments Greg Denton
Gregory.Denton@tn.gov
Quality Assurance Project Plan for 106 Monitoring in the Division of Water Resources
Volume I


February 2013
This document describes monitoring, analyses, quality control, and assessment procedures used by the Division of Water Resources to develop TMDLs, 305(b) and 303(d) assessments. Linda Cartwright
Linda.Cartwright@tn.gov
2012 305(b) Report:
The Status of Water Quality in Tennessee
Report on the general water quality of surface waters in Tennessee. Contains information about water quality, the assessment process, use support, causes and sources of pollution, and waterbodies posted due to human health risks. Debbie Arnwine
Debbie.Arnwine@tn.gov
Exceptional Tennessee Waters & Outstanding National Resource Waters The Division of Water Resources has compiled a partial list of exceptional Tennessee waters based on characteristics set forth in the regulation by the Tennessee Water Quality Control Board. Debbie Arnwine
Debbie.Arnwine@tn.gov
EPA Approved Final Version Year 2010 303(d) List

October 2011
An EPA approved final list of streams, rivers, reservoirs, and lakes that do not meet water quality standards in 2010. Provides pollutant information and TMDL prioritization. Greg Denton
Gregory.Denton@tn.gov
Quality Systems Standard Operating Procedure for Chemical and Bacteriological Sampling of Surface Water
(TDEC, WPC)
(4.4 mb pdf)

August 2011
This document describes procedures for collecting chemical and bacteriological samples of surface waters as well as chain-of-custody and quality control approved by the Division of Water Resources. Protocols are also described for the specifications and accurate use of water-quality probes, sampling equipment, and flow meters. Debbie Arnwine
Debbie.Arnwine@tn.gov
Quality System Standard Operating Procedure for Macroinvertebrate Stream Surveys
(TDEC, WPC)
(2.7 mb pdf)

July 2011
This document describes procedures for performing two types of macroinvertebrate surveys approved by the Division of Water Resources for assessing biological integrity of streams. The entire procedure is described including protocols for sample collection, habit assessment, sample analysis, data reduction and reporting. Debbie Arnwine
Debbie.Arnwine@tn.gov
2010 305(b) Report The Status of Water Quality in Tennessee

November 2010
Report on the general water quality of surface waters in Tennessee. Contains information about water quality, posted waterbodies, and watershed summaries. Greg Denton
Gregory.Denton@tn.gov
Quality System Standard Operating Procedure for Periphyton Stream Surveys

January 2010
This document describes procedures for performing periphyton surveys approved by the Division of Water Resources for assessing biological integrity of streams. The entire procedure is described including protocols for sample collection, habit assessment, sample analysis, data reduction and reporting." Debbie Arnwine
Debbie.Arnwine@tn.gov

Water Quality Assessment Publications

Existing Publications

Publication Brief Description Contact Person
2010 Probabilistic Monitoring of Wadeable Streams in Tennessee A probabilistically-based survey of wadeable streams in Tennessee. This report is a follow-up to a study conducted in 2007 and 2008, which was published in a series of 6 reports. Debbie Arnwine
Debbie.Arnwine@tn.gov
Mercury Air Deposition and Selenium Levels in Tennessee Fish and Surface Water

December 2010
This document reports the results from a study that was designed to test whether predicted mercury air deposition levels using the REMSAD model was correlated to mercury concentrations in fish tissue and water samples. Selenium concentrations were also analyzed in the fish tissue and water samples. Debbie Arnwine
Debbie.Arnwine@tn.gov
2007-2008 Probabilistic Monitoring of Wadeable Streams in Tennessee

Volume 2: Study Design and Stream Characterization

February 2009
A probabilistically-based survey of wadeable streams in Tennessee. A series of 6 reports are being published to convey the results of the study. 

Volume 2 provides detail on the design and implementation of the project. It describes the site selection process.  Information on drainage area, ecoregion, watersheds and land use is discussed to determine representativeness of the subsample to the entire population of Tennessee streams. This volume also provides information on sample collection, analyses and quality assurance.
Debbie Arnwine
Debbie.Arnwine@tn.gov
2007-2008 Probabilistic Monitoring of Wadeable Streams in Tennessee

Volume 3: Macroinvertebrates and Habitat

February 2009
A probabilistically-based survey of wadeable streams in Tennessee. A series of 6 reports are being published to convey the results of the study. 

Volume 3 provides details on macroinvertebrate populations and habitat quality.
Debbie Arnwine
Debbie.Arnwine@tn.gov
2007-2008 Probabilistic Monitoring of Wadeable Streams in Tennessee

Volume 4: Water Chemistry

March 2009
A probabilistically-based survey of wadeable streams in Tennessee. A series of 6 reports are being published to convey the results of the study. 

Volume 4 provides details on field measurements and chemical data.
Debbie Arnwine
Debbie.Arnwine@tn.gov
2007-2008 Probabilistic Monitoring of Wadeable Streams in Tennessee

Volume 5: Pathogens

February 2009
A probabilistically-based survey of wadeable streams in Tennessee. A series of 6 reports are being published to convey the results of the study.

Volume 5 provides details on bacteriological data using the indicator organism E. coli.
Debbie Arnwine
Debbie.Arnwine@tn.gov
2007-2008 Probabilistic Monitoring of Wadeable Streams in Tennessee

Volume 6: Periphyton

June 2010
A probabilistically-based survey of wadeable streams in Tennessee. A series of 6 reports are being published to convey the results of the study.

Volume 6 provides details on periphyton.
Debbie Arnwine
Debbie.Arnwine@tn.gov
2008 305(b) Report The Status of Water Quality in Tennessee

April 2008
Report on the general water quality of surface waters in Tennessee, including 2006 – 2008 assessments. Contains information about water quality, posted waterbodies, and watershed summaries. Greg Denton
Gregory.Denton@tn.gov
EPA Approved Final Version Year 2008 303(d) List

June 2008
An EPA approved final list of streams, rivers, reservoirs, and lakes that do not meet water quality standards in 2008. Provides pollutant information and TMDL prioritization. Greg Denton
Gregory.Denton@tn.gov
Mercury Levels in Tennessee Fish The Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation compiled tissue data from multiple agencies in order to analyze mercury concentrations in fish from Tennessee's rivers, lakes, reservoirs and streams. This analysis led to the issuance of new and updated mercury advisories in April, 2007. Greg Denton
Gregory.Denton@tn.gov
Probabilistic Monitoring of Streams Below Small Impoundments in Tennessee This report describes the results of a probabilistic study of 75 streams below small impoundments and the effects of the impoundments on aquatic life, nutrients, dissolved oxygen, pH, iron, manganese, habitat, flow, and periphyton density. Debbie Arnwine
Debbie.Arnwine@tn.gov
EPA Approved Final Version Year 2006 303(d) List

December 2006
An EPA approved final list of streams, rivers, reservoirs, and lakes that do not meet water quality standards in 2006. Provides pollutant information and TMDL prioritization. Greg Denton
Gregory.Denton@tn.gov
2006 305(b) Report The Status of Water Quality in Tennessee

April 2006
Report on the general water quality of surface waters in Tennessee, including 2004 - 2006 assessments. Contains information about water quality, posted waterbodies, and watershed summaries. Greg Denton
Gregory.Denton@tn.gov
Threatened and Endangered Species List This lists the known threatened and endangered species including aquatic and semi-aquatic plants and aquatic animals in Tennessee. The list is subject to revision. Debbie Arnwine
Debbie.Arnwine@tn.gov
Regional Characterization of Streams in Tennessee with Emphasis on Diurnal Dissolved Oxygen, Nutrients, Habitat, Geomorphology and Macroinvertebrates

September 2005
This report describes a 2004 statewide study, which is a continuation of a 2002 study of regional differences in diurnal dissolved oxygen patterns in wadeable streams. Other goals of this study were to characterize streams based on geomorphology, periphyton, and nutrients and describe streams that cross ecoregions in west Tennessee. Debbie Arnwine
Debbie.Arnwine@tn.gov
Tennessee's Plan for Nutrient Criteria Development (TDEC, WPC, PAS)

September 2007
Describes the approach the Division of Water Resources will use to identify and adopt additional water quality standards for nutrient related parameters. Greg Denton
Gregory.Denton@tn.gov
Probabilistic Monitoring in the Inner Nashville Basin with Emphasis on Nutrient and Macroinvertebrate Relationships (Arnwine, Sparks, and Denton, 2003) This report describes the results of a probabilistic study conducted in the Inner Nashville Basin to determine the relationship between the biological communities and nutrient levels. Debbie Arnwine
Debbie.Arnwine@tn.gov
The Results of Fish Tissue Monitoring in Tennessee: 1992 – 1997. (Freeman & Denton) Contains a general description of the fish tissue monitoring program and contains the result of contaminate monitoring for a five-year period. Greg Denton
Gregory.Denton@tn.gov
Development of Regionally-Based pH Criteria for Wadeable Streams (Arnwine and Denton, 2002)

April 2004
This document describes a statewide study of regional differences in the effect pH has on the aquatic communities in wadeable streams and rivers. These results will form the basis of recommendations for regional pH criteria to be formalized in the General Water Quality Criteria.. Greg Denton
Gregory.Denton@tn.gov
Evaluation of Regional Dissolved Oxygen Patterns of Wadeable Streams in Tennessee Based on Diurnal and Daytime Monitoring (Arnwine and Denton, 2003)
(2.39 mb pdf)
This report describes a statewide study of regional differences in both diurnal and daylight dissolved oxygen patterns in wadeable streams. Study results will help guide fish and aquatic life criteria decisions for the 2002 triennial review of water quality standards. Debbie Arnwine
Debbie.Arnwine@tn.gov
Dioxin Levels in Pigeon River Fish 1996-2002 (Denton and Arnwine, 2002)
(1.02 mb pdf)
This report describes the improvement in water quality that has resulted in the removal of the fish tissue advisory for the Tennessee portion of the Pigeon River. Greg Denton
Gregory.Denton@tn.gov
Comparison of Nutrient Levels, Periphyton Densities and Diurnal Dissolved Oxygen Patterns in Impaired and Reference Quality Streams in Tennessee (Arnwine and Sparks) 2003 This document compares algal densities and nutrient levels to diurnal DO patterns in reference and impaired steams in 16 subecoregions. Debbie Arnwine
Debbie.Arnwine@tn.gov
EPA Approved Final Version Year 2004 303(d) List

April 2005
A list of streams and lakes that do not meet water quality standards in 2004. Provides cause and source of pollutant information and TMDL prioritization. Greg Denton
Gregory.Denton@tn.gov
2004 305(b) Report The Status of Water Quality in Tennessee (Denton, Sparks, Arnwine, Cartwright) Report documenting the general quality of surface waters during the period 2002-2004. Contains information about streams, lakes, and wetlands. Identifies streams that are currently posted due to fish contamination and elevated bacteria levels. Greg Denton
Gregory.Denton@tn.gov
Final Version
Year 2002
303(d) List


January 2004
A list of the streams and lakes not meeting water quality standards in 2002. Provides documentation of pollutants and general sources of pollutants. Prioritizes streams for future TMDL development. Greg Denton
Gregory.Denton@tn.gov
2002 305(b) Report The Status of Water Quality in Tennessee (Denton, Sparks, Arnwine, Cartwright)
(6.69 mb pdf)
Report documenting the general quality of surface waters during the period 2000-2002. Contains information about streams, lakes, and wetlands. Highlights success stories and innovative management strategies. Identifies streams that are currently posted due to fish contamination and elevated bacteria levels. Greg Denton
Gregory.Denton@tn.gov
Habitat Quality of Least-Impacted Streams in Tennessee 2001 (Arnwine and Denton) This report describes the habitat quality of ecoregion reference streams. Seasonal variability, stream size and ecoregion expectations are discussed. Reference data is compared to historic habitat assessments. Guidelines for maintaining protective habitat in each of Tennessee's 25 ecological subregions are provided. The report includes a question and answer section of habitat guidance implementation. Debbie Arnwine
Debbie.Arnwine@tn.gov
Development of Regionally-Based Numeric Interpretations of Tennessee's Narrative Biological Integrity Criterion 2001 (Arnwine and Deton) This report contains guidance for interpretation of existing narrative biological criteria based on regional reference data. The report details macroinvertebrate monitoring at reference streams. The metric selection and assessment guidelines are discussed. A description of how ecoregions were grouped into bioregions for assessment purposes is included. Seasonal variability of macroinvertebrate populations is discussed. Numeric biocriteria based on a multi-metric index is proposed and compared to historic targeted and probabilistic monitoring. The report contains a question and answer section on biocriteria implementation. Debbie Arnwine
Debbie.Arnwine@tn.gov
Development of Regionally-Based Interpretations of Tennessee's Narrative Nutrient Criterion. 2001 (Denton, Arnwine and Wang) This report contains guidance for interpretation of existing narrative nutrient criteria based on regional reference data. The report summarizes reference nutrient data and describes how nitrate+nitrite and total phosphorus goals were developed. A comparison of reference data to historic targeted and probabilistic monitoring sites is included. Relationships between nutrient levels and macroinvertebrate populations are explored. The report contains a question and answer section on nutrient criteria implementation. Greg Denton
Gregory.Denton@tn.gov
Tennessee Ecoregion Project 1994-1999. (Arnwine, Broach, Cartwright and Denton) This report contains a detailed description of Tennessee's ecoregion delineation and reference stream monitoring project. The ecoregion report describes how subregions were defined and how reference streams were selected. The report includes descriptions of macroinvertebrate, bacteriological, and chemical monitoring as well as habitat assessment. Summaries of all data are provided. Debbie Arnwine
Debbie.Arnwine@tn.gov
The Status of Water Quality in Tennessee Year 2000 305(b) Report (Denton, Vann and Wang) Report documenting the general quality of surface waters during the period 1998-2000. Contains information about streams, lakes, and wetlands. Highlights success stories, emerging water quality issues, and innovative management strategies. Identifies streams that are currently posted due to fish contamination and elevated bacteria levels. Additionally, the 305(b) report contains the water quality assessments of group 1,2 and 3 watersheds. Greg Denton
Gregory.Denton@tn.gov
Ecoregions of Tennessee (Griffith, Omernik, and Azevedo) This EPA publication documents work to delineate sub-ecoregion boundaries in Tennessee. Debbie Arnwine
Debbie.Arnwine@tn.gov
Level III and IV Ecoregions in Tennessee A one-page color map illustrating the boundaries of ecoregions and sub-ecoregions in Tennessee. Debbie Arnwine
Debbie.Arnwine@tn.gov

Technical/Engineering Documents

Publications Brief Description Contact
Division of Water Resources Collection System Project Download Draft Documents for Review Robert G. O'Dette, M.S., P.E
Robert.Odette@tn.gov
Pretreatment Model Sewer Use Ordinance View in PDF format
View in Word format
Yatasha Moore
Yatasha.Moore@tn.gov
Design Criteria for Sewage Works

Guidance for municipalities and industries for the design of sewage systems and wastewater treatment plants.

Design Criteria-Table of Contents

Design Criteria Chapter 1 - General Engineering Requirements

Design Criteria Chapter 2 - Sewers and Wastewater Pumping Stations

Design Criteria Chapter 3 - Laboratory, Personnel, Maintenance Facilities and Safety Design

Design Criteria Chapter 4 - Preliminary and Pretreatment Facilities

Design Criteria Chapter 5 - Clarifiers

Design Criteria Chapter 6 - Fixed Film Reactors

Design Criteria Chapter 7 - Activated Sludge

Design Criteria Chapter 8 - Nitrification

Design Criteria Chapter 9 - Ponds and Aerated Lagoons

Design Criteria Chapter 10 - Disinfection

Design Criteria Chapter 11 - Tertiary Treatment / Advanced Wastewater Treatment

Design Criteria Chapter 12 - Sludge Processing and Disposal

Design Criteria Chapter 13 - Plant Flow Measurement and Sampling

Design Criteria Chapter 14 - Instrumentation, Control and Electrical Systems

Design Criteria Chapter 15 - Managed Wastewater Dispersal Using Drip Irrigation

Design Criteria Chapter 16 - Design Guidelines for Wastewater Treatment Systems Using Spray Irrigation

Design Criteria Chapter 17 - Design Guidelines for Wastewater Dispersal Using Drip Irrigation

Wastewater Plans Review Fee Worksheet (CN-1457)

Robert G. O'Dette, M.S., P.E
Robert.Odette@tn.gov
Erosion and Sediment Control Handbook

A guide for protection of state waters through the use of best management practices during land disturbing activities. Robert Karesh
Robert.Karesh@tn.gov
TN Oil and Grease Control Guidance Document Guidance for municipalities in creating regulations and enforcement plans dealing with oil and grease on a local level.

Guidance Document Cover Page (78.6KB)
Guidance Document (528KB)
Appendices (512KB)
Jennifer Peters Dodd
Jennifer.Dodd@tn.gov