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A DECISION SUPPORT PROCESS FOR WATERSHED MANAGEMENT ON THE TRUCKEE RIVER

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This paper discusses the development of a decision support process and system, including implementation of stakeholder participation and governance issues to facilitate a watershed approach on the Truckee River. Consistent with EPA guidance, meaningful and well timed public involvement is the cornerstone of a successful watershed management process and should result in better supported, more cost effective and expeditiously implemented total maximum daily loads (TMDLs). A stakeholder and decision support process has been implemented on the Truckee River, in order to revise the existing TMDLs, identify potential load reduction scenarios and to develop a pollutant load trading program. With the development of the original TMDLs for nitrogen, phosphorous and TDS, in 1994, and associated waste load allocation for TMWRF, a constraint was placed on the discharge of treated wastewater to the river limiting the potential future growth of the region. As a result, the Agencies are interested in taking a watershed approach to identifying regional solutions to improve water quality without taking the water out of the river and at the same time to be able to accommodate for growth. Several key tools were identified as necessary in order to ensure the success of the TMDL revision and establishment of a trading program, including: a stakeholder process to ensure all concerns are recognized and addressed; a work-shopping process to gain consensus on the tools to be used and watershed program identified; a governance structure to facilitate meetings and activities; and the development of a watershed model to provide a regional decision support tool for planners, stakeholders and regulators.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2000-01-01

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