Water Quality Analysis of Eutrophication for the Upper North Branch Potomac River, Garrett County, Maryland

Water Quality Analyses (WQA) with EPA Concurrence of MDE's Findings: 
Upper North Branch of the Potomac River

The North Branch of the Potomac River forms the border between Maryland and West Virginia from its origin at the Fairfax Stone downstream to its confluence with the South Branch of the Potomac.  The Upper North Branch of the Potomac River is defined as the reach between its headwaters in West Virginia and its confluence with the Savage River.  The drainage area of Upper North Branch Potomac River watershed is 67,252 acres. 

The Upper North Branch Potomac River (basin code 02141005) was identified on the State’s Integrated Report of Surface Water Quality submitted to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) by the Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE), as impaired by metals (1996), sediments (1996), nutrients (1996), low pH (1996), methylmercury (2002), and impacts to biological communities (2002 & 2004).

The report available below provides an analysis of recent monitoring data to address whether or not the watershed is still impaired by nutrients. The study demonstrates that both applicable criteria for nutrients and the designated uses supported by this criteria are being met in the Upper North Branch Potomac River 8-digit basin; therefore, a nutrient TMDL is not required. 

Although the waters of Upper North Branch Potomac River do not display signs of eutrophication, the State reserves the right to require future controls in the Upper North Branch Potomac River watershed if evidence suggests nutrients from the basin are contributing to downstream water quality problems. Other substances not addressed at this time, but identified on Maryland’s Integrated Report list as impairing the Upper North Branch of the Potomac River 8-digit basin, will be addressed in the future.

 

WQA of Eutrophication for Upper North Branch Potomac River, Garrett County, Maryland

(EPA Concurrence: August 10, 2006)

EPA's Decision Letter EPA's Decision Letter

Main Report 

WQA_UNB_Potomac_eutro.pdf (1266KB)

Comment Response Document

CRD_UNB_Potomac_eutro.pdf (10KB)
 

Contact Information

Please direct questions or comments concerning this project to Maryland's TMDL Program at (410) 537-3572.


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