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Total Maximum Daily Loads for Trash

Total Maximum Daily Loads for Trash

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Total Maximum Daily Loads for Trash

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  1. Total Maximum Daily Loadsfor Trash Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board - March 16, 2006

  2. Why a TMDL for Trash? • Required by the Clean Water Act-- when a waterbody does not meet water quality standards. • In 1998, U.S. EPA found that the L.A.River did not meet water quality standards, due to trash. • Federal Consent Decree compelled U.S. EPA to establish a trash TMDL for the L.A. River by March 22, 2002. Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board - March 16, 2006

  3. Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board - March 16, 2006

  4. Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board - March 16, 2006

  5. Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board - March 16, 2006

  6. Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board - March 16, 2006

  7. Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board - March 16, 2006

  8. January 11, 2001

  9. Narrative Objectives for Trash • “Waters shall not contain floating materials including solids, liquids, foams, and scum in concentrations that cause nuisance or adversely affect beneficial use.” And • “Waters shall not contain suspended or settable material in concentrations that cause nuisance or adversely affect beneficial uses.” Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board - March 16, 2006

  10. Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board - March 16, 2006

  11. TMDL Elements • Numeric Targets • Assimilative Capacity • Waste Load Allocations • Implementation Plan • Monitoring • Means of Compliance Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board - March 16, 2006

  12. Numeric Target • Numeric Target = Zero Trash Discharge • Litter laws establish zero, no legal level of litter • Waterbody does not assimilate trash • A single piece of trash can have an negative impact on beneficial uses • No studies to support a higher number • Inherent margin of safety Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board - March 16, 2006

  13. Assimilative Capacity • Do gross pollutants like trash assimilate in the waterbody? • Trash does not “dissolve” • Trash is not a typical “suspended solid” Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board - March 16, 2006

  14. Waste Load Allocations • Municipal Stormwater Permit • By Area x Default Generation Rate • Applied at end of storm drain • No allocation to non-point sources Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board - March 16, 2006

  15. Baseline Monitoring Goal • Obtain representative data by land use to calculate base load allocations • Watershed-wide data to be used in establishing baseline allocations • Rewards cities that have already implemented BMPs • Flexibility in allowing cities and the county to collaborate efforts Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board - March 16, 2006

  16. Trash Reduction Schedule

  17. Trash Generation Ratesby Land Use • Residential • Commercial • Industrial • Transportation and Utilities • Mixed Urban • Open Space and Recreation • Agriculture • Water Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board - March 16, 2006

  18. Means of Compliance • Anti-litter campaign and good house keeping • Partial capture devices in storm drain catch basins • Full capture devices in storm drain systems Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board - March 16, 2006

  19. Measuring Reduction in Litter Effectiveness of Anti-Litter Campaign and Good Housekeeping Annual measurement for a 30-day period during high litter season to establish the daily litter rate. Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board - March 16, 2006

  20. Example Full-Capture Systems • Full Capture = Zero Trash • Full Capture defined • 5 mm Mesh • 1 hour – 1 year storm Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board - March 16, 2006

  21. Trash Reduction Schedule

  22. Trash TMDL Approved • Regional Board adopted on 9/19/01 • State Board approved on 2/19/02 • Office of Administrative Law on 7/16/02 • USEPA approved on 8/1/02 Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board - March 16, 2006

  23. City of Arcadia et al. V. State Water Resources Control Board • Coalition for Practical Regulation (CPR) cities file suit in Los Angeles County Superior Court in July 2002 • Parties stipulate transfer to San Diego County Superior Court • 12/23/03 San Diego County Superior Court Rules Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board - March 16, 2006

  24. Appeal • Water Board and Cities appeal selected Superior Court Judgements • Court of Appeal, Fourth Appellate, rules on 1/26/06 Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board - March 16, 2006

  25. Water Board Appeal • Water Board failed to conduct assimilative capacity study • Water Board failed to conduct cost/benefit or consider economic factors • TMDL inappropriately applied to Estuary, when Estuary not listed on 303(d) list • Water Board failed to comply with CEQA Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board - March 16, 2006

  26. Court of Appeal - Ruling • Assimilative Capacity • Federal law does not require the regional board to conduct assimilative capacity study before adopting the Trash TMDL. • Evidence shows that because of the nature of trash, including styrofoam containers and other materials, that are undiluted by water, in contrast to chemical pollutants, and dangers to wildife of even small amounts of trash, an assimilative capacity study would be difficult to conduct and of little value. Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board - March 16, 2006

  27. Court of Appeal - Ruling • Water Board failed to conduct cost/benefit or consider economic factors • Water Boards sufficiently complied • Discusses costs of collecting and disposing of trash • Discusses costs of various types of compliance measures • Includes capitol and O&M costs Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board - March 16, 2006

  28. Court of Appeal - Ruling • TMDL applied to L.A. River Estuary • Administrative record contains several pictures of trash deposited in the Estuary during high flows, . . . • TMDL identification of the Estuary as impaired could have been clearer, but we conclude it was sufficient to put all affected parties on notice, and does not meet the arbitrary and capricious standard. Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board - March 16, 2006

  29. Court of Appeal - Ruling • Water Board failed to comply with CEQA • Agree with Superior Court finding that the regional board’s environmental checklist was deficient and there is sufficient evidence of a fair argument that the project may a have a significant effect on the environment, thus necessitating and EIR or functional equivalent. Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board - March 16, 2006

  30. Cities’ Appeal • Zero target unattainable • Failure to allocate load allocation • Beneficial Uses • Scientific Methodology • Administrative Procedures – Un-listed waterbodies Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board - March 16, 2006

  31. Court of Appeal - Ruling • Zero target unattainable • “A zero limit on trash within the meaning of the Trash TMDL is attainable because there are methods of deemed compliance with the limit.” Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board - March 16, 2006

  32. Court of Appeal - Ruling • Failure to assign a load allocation to nonpoint sources: • Agrees with Superior Court judgement that the although the Clean Water Act focuses on both point and nonpoint sources . . . nothing in the Act demands that a state adopt a regulatory system for nonpoint sources. Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board - March 16, 2006

  33. Court of Appeal - Ruling • Beneficial Uses • The Cities make no showing of prejudice. Swimming and bathing by the homeless are only two among numerous other beneficial uses that the Cities do not challenge and there is no suggestion that the numeric target of zero trash in the LA River would have been less stringent without consideration of the factors the Cities raise, Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board - March 16, 2006

  34. Court of Appeal - Ruling • Scientific Methodology • The Cities failed to establish the Water Boards’ scientific data is inadequate or scientifically invalid. The Water Boards have not “failed to conduct on-going studies……and the record reveals studies relied upon by the Boards”. Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board - March 16, 2006

  35. Court of Appeal - Ruling • Administrative Procedures – Un-listed waterbodies • The trash TMDL sufficiently notified affected parties of the inclusion of the Estuary as an impaired water body, and the load allocation for nonpoint sources is necessarily zero Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board - March 16, 2006

  36. A View of the River Without Trash The End Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board - March 16, 2006