The Department of Environmental Protection Tuesday announced it has submitted the 2016 Draft Integrated Water Quality Monitoring and Assessment Report to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, listing the 19,900 miles of impaired waterways in Pennsylvania.
That number is down slightly from the 20,149 miles reported in July of last year in the first draft of this report.
The latest report lists the Lower Susquehanna River as impaired for recreation use, like the draft did, but does not list it as impaired for fisheries as requested by the Fish and Boat Commission, Chesapeake Bay Foundation-PA and numerous other groups. (page 34)
DEP says in the report it is continuing to conduct extensive sampling in the river and has developing a large river assessment protocol which it expects to complete in 2017. The new assessment method, it said, along with the sampling methodologies and techniques will be made available for public comment in advance of the next integrated Water Quality Report in 2018. (page 42)
“Pennsylvania is home to more than 86,000 miles of streams and rivers and more than 160,000 acres of lakes, so it is vital that we maintain and monitor these valuable resources,” said DEP Secretary Patrick McDonnell. “This report serves to identify what waters are healthy and what waters need some extra attention.”
Read the full story from PA Environment Digest here.