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EPA's WATERSHED APPROACH TO MANAGING URBAN NONPOINT SOURCE POLLUTION

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In a poster presentation, EPA will identify and summarize the watershed approach to managing urban nonpoint source pollution as presented in the National Urban Nonpoint Source Management Measures Guidance, to be drafted in 2001. This guidance is being written to provide technical and programmatic information on how to develop and implement an effective urban runoff program on a watershed basis. The guidance contains a set of management measures that EPA recommends to states, local governments, and community groups to incorporate into their urban pollution control programs to protect surface and groundwater quality. These management measures are organized using a watershed approach that begins with establishing a program and assessing the water quality within a watershed. Management measures for planning and design of development follow, which include non-structural protective control practices and structural designs that can be implemented before, during, and immediately following development. Pollution prevention/source reduction, retrofitting existing urban areas, operation and maintenance, and program evaluation are then addressed by management measures to complete the cycle of urban watershed management.

Each management measure is a collection of actions that EPA has determined are important to prevent and reduce urban nonpoint source pollution. For each management measure, EPA has provided a list of practices that can be used to implement the objectives of the management measure. Example practices include riparian buffer requirements, sand filters, site inspections, certification programs, operation and maintenance programs, and pollution prevention/source reduction techniques. The guidance also includes management measures and recommended practices for siting, design, and operating onsite/decentralized wastewater treatment systems.

The guidance is being written to be useful to state and local government officials, landowners, developers, environmental and conservation groups, and other watershed practitioners. Cost and effectiveness data are provided for most practices and references to the most up-to-date and useful publications and web sites are cited.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2002-01-01

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