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Nutrients are one of the leading causes of water quality impairment in our Nation's rivers, lakes, and coastal estuaries. Although EPA has committed significant attention and resources to the development of national nutrient guidance, state approaches to nutrients vary widely. For example, South Carolina adopted EPA's recommended nutrient criteria in an effort to avoid continued litigation over its narrative nutrient standards. South Carolina now is attempting to implement those criteria through contentious permit and TMDL proceedings. By contrast, Virginia rejected EPA's national recommendations in favor of regional effects-based criteria. Although Virginia's choice reflects a clear nexus between criteria and designated uses, its efforts to usher in new criteria have been hampered by actual or threatened litigation. The competing approaches in South Carolina and Virginia highlight several recurring themes in the criteria development process. Understanding those themes is critical to the development of scientifically-sound and appropriate nutrient criteria.

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.2175/193864705783967467

Publication date: January 1, 2005

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  • Proceedings of the Water Environment Federation is an archive of papers published in the proceedings of the annual Water Environment Federation® Technical Exhibition and Conference (WEFTEC® ) and specialty conferences held since the year 2000. These proceedings are not peer reviewed.

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