News Release 183

Department of Natural Resources seeking comments on proposed changes to Missouri's water quality standards

Volume 39-183 (For Immediate Release)
For more information: 573-751-1010

JEFFERSON CITY, MO, JUNE 3, 2011— The Missouri Department of Natural Resources opened a 60-day comment period today on a series of proposed changes to the state’s water quality standards.
The U.S. Clean Water Act requires the state to review its water quality standards every three years, and state law requires the department to report on the likely effects of any changes that are made to the standards. This report, known formally as a regulatory impact report, has been posted to the department’s website for public review through Aug. 2.
The regulatory impact report addresses the environmental benefits and economic costs associated with a number of proposed changes to the state’s water quality standards:

· Applying “fishable/swimmable” use designations to 84,845 miles of currently unclassified waters as required by the federal Clean Water Act.

· Expanding dissolved oxygen water quality criteria per federal guidance.

· Revising chloride water quality criteria in response to petition.

· Revising phenol water quality criteria in response to petition.

· Designating LaBarque Creek in Jefferson Co. as an outstanding state resource water in response to petition.

· Responding to the October 2009 Environmental Protection Agency decision that new or revised water quality standards are needed on a 28.6 mile segment of the Mississippi River near St. Louis.

· Authorizing provisions to provide the basis for recommending variances to water quality standards when standards are not achievable through traditional regulatory approaches.

A regulatory impact report is required at the beginning of the rulemaking process for rulemakings involving environmental standards or conditions. The report documents the environmental benefits and economic costs associated with the upcoming rulemaking.

The report can be accessed on the Water Protection Program’s website at Copies of the report may be requested by calling 573-751-1300, by mail at Missouri Department of Natural Resources, Water Protection Program, P.O. Box 176, Jefferson City, MO 65102-0176, Attn: John Hoke, or by email at

Written comments regarding the report will be accepted through 5 p.m. on Tuesday, August 2, 2011. Comments should be addressed to John Hoke at the addresses above. Please include your name, postal address and phone number when submitting email comments.