Guidance Specifying Management Measures for Sources of Nonpoint Pollution in Coastal Waters
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Water
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This document contains guidance specifying management measures for sources of nonpoint pollution in coastal waters. Nonpoint pollution is the pollution of our nation's waters caused by rainfall or snowmelt moving over and through the ground. As the runoff moves, it picks up and carries away natural pollutants and pollutants resulting from human activity, finally depositing them into lakes, rivers, wetlands, coastal waters, and ground waters. In addition, hydrologic modification is a form of nonpoint source pollution that often adversely affects the biological and physical integrity of surface waters. In the Coastal Zone Act Reauthorization Amendments of 1990 (CZARA), Congress recognized that nonpoint pollution is a key factor in the continuing degradation of many coastal waters and established a new program to address this pollution. Congress further recognized that the solution to nonpoint pollution lies in State and local action. Thus, in enacting the CZARA, Congress called upon States to develop and implement State Coastal Nonpoint Pollution Control Programs. Congress assigned to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) the responsibility to develop this technical guidance to guide the States' development of Coastal Nonpoint Pollution Control Programs, which much be in conformity with the technical guidance. EPA developed this guidance by carefully surveying the technical literature, working with Federal and State agencies, and engaging in extensive dialogue with the public to identify the best economically achievable measures that are available to protect coastal waters from nonpoint pollution. This "management measures" guidance addresses five source categories of nonpoint pollution: agriculture, silviculture, urban, marinas, and hydromodification. A suite of management measures is provided for each source category. In addition, we have included a chapter that provides management measures that provide other tools available to address many source categories of nonpoint pollution; these tools include the protection, restoration, and construction of wetlands, riparian areas, and vegetated treatment systems. In addition to this "management measures" guidance, EPA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) have jointly published final guidance for the approval of State programs that implement management measures. That guidance explains more fully how the management measures guidance will be implemented in State programs.