Total Maximum Daily Loads (TMDLs)

Engineering Director

Thomas V. Clabo, P.E.
[email protected]
(865) 215-2148

400 Main St., Suite 475
Knoxville, TN 37902

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The Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation (TDEC), in accordance with mandates from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA), has made comprehensive lists of polluted streams and rivers with the state of Tennessee. The 303(d) list is compiled using the HUC designation given to watersheds by the United States Geological Survey.

The 303(d) lists for every state are updated periodically as more information becomes available. The individual cities and counties are required to be very proactive in addressing the cited types of pollution. See the TDEC Web site for the current 303(d) list and for additional information about TMDLs. Streams may be added to the list, or even removed if the pollution reduction goals have been met. 

TDEC has authorized pollution reduction goals for various streams across the state of Tennessee, based upon modeling the specific pollutants to determine a total maximum daily load (TMDL). Water quality models are developed and then calibrated using existing data such as average flow discharge or water quality. The initial wave of TMDL studies modeled for the Knoxville creeks and streams in 2001 are for fecal coliform pollution. Additional pollutants (sediment, heavy metals, nutrients) will be modeled in future years. Since the City of Knoxville must meet TMDL goals and targets for each listed creek and stream, additional measures for pollution reduction may be required above and beyond the first flush criteria used in stormwater detention. 

Links to TMDL information:

USEPA - Clean Water Act Section 303(d), TMDLs
USEPA - National Water Program Performance, Reports and Statistics
TDEC - Information on TMDLs
TDEC - Posted Streams and Lakes (Bacteria Advisory & Contaminated Fish Chapter 5)

See the TDEC website for the final approved TMDL reports issued for the following Knoxville watersheds:

  • TMDL Report for Fecal Coliform: First Creek, Second Creek, Third Creek, and Goose Creek. (Fort Loudoun Watershed - HUC 06010201)

  • TMDL Report for Fecal Coliform: Baker Creek, Fourth Creek, and Williams Creek. (Fort Loudoun Watershed - HUC 06010201)