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Upper Clark Fork Phase 2

Page history last edited by Jordan Tollefson 5 years, 7 months ago Saved with comment

Upper Clark Fork Phase 2 TMDL Project

 

Project Documents                          Project Outreach

  

The "Upper Clark Fork Phase 2 Sediment and Nutrients TMDLs and Framework Water Quality Improvement Plan " and the "Addendum to Upper Clark Fork River Tributaries Sediment, Metals, and Temperature TMDLs and Framework for Water Quality Restoration" documents were approved by EPA in April 2014.  The final documents are available on the DEQ website at:  http://deq.mt.gov/wqinfo/TMDL/finalReports.mcpx.

 

 

Introduction

The Upper Clark Fork Phase 2 project area is located in the Columbia River Basin (Accounting Unit 170102) of western Montana, as shown on Figure 1. The project area includes all of 8-digit Hydrologic Unit Code (HUC) 17010201 except the Little Blackfoot Drainage. The majority of the TPA is within Powell County, with small areas in Granite, Deer Lodge, and Silver Bow counties, and includes the municipalities of Butte, Anaconda, Deer Lodge, and Garrison, MT.  The project area encompasses Silver Bow Creek and the upper portion of the Clark Fork River watershed, which begins in Silver Bow County at the headwaters near Butte, MT and flows 99.7 miles to its confluence with Flint Creek near Drummond, MT in Granite County.

 

The TPA is bounded by the Boulder Mountains to the east, the Highland and Anaconda Ranges to the south, the Flint Creek Range to the west, and the Garnet Range to the north.  The total area is 956,160 acres, or approximately 1,494 square miles.  The TPA does not include the Little Blackfoot River watershed which is a separate TPA for which TMDLs were approved by EPA in December 2011.

 

The Upper Clark Fork Phase 2 project completely overlaps the Upper Clark Fork TMDL planning area.  In addition to tributaries to the Clark Fork River, the Phase 2 Project includes 3 segments of the main stem of the Clark Fork River upstream of the Flint Creek confluence.  These segments are separately identified in the Silver Bow Creek –Clark Fork River metals project but for purposes of efficiency have been included in the Phase 2 TMDL project.  As the project overlaps the Upper Clark Fork planning area, it is named the Upper Clark Fork Phase 2 TMDL planning area.

 

In 2010, the “Upper Clark Fork River Tributaries Sediment, Metals, and Temperature TMDLs and Framework for Water Quality Restoration” document was published to address water quality impairments within the Upper Clark Fork TMDL Planning Area.  The Upper Clark Fork Phase 2 TMDLs, along with the Clark Fork River-Silver Bow Creek Metals TMDLs will address water quality impairments that were not originally addressed in the original Upper Clark Fork TMDLs document.

 

In 2010, the “Upper Clark Fork River Tributaries Sediment, Metals, and Temperature TMDLs and Framework for Water Quality Restoration” document was published to address water quality impairments within the Upper Clark Fork TMDL Planning Area.  The Upper Clark Fork Phase 2 TMDLs, along with the Clark Fork River-Silver Bow Creek Metals TMDLs will address water quality impairments that were not originally addressed in the original Upper Clark Fork TMDLs document.

 

 

Project Purpose

The state of Montana monitors its waters and conducts water quality assessments to determine if waterbodies are supporting their designated uses. In the Upper Clark Fork Phase 2 project area, most streams in the project area are in the B-1 use classification category. The exceptions include 4 assessment units (AUs) used for public water supply which have A classifications and 2 AUs with C classifications.  Silver Bow Creek is classified as I.  A-closed waterbodies include: Hearst Lake drainage to the Lower Hearst Inlet and Fifer Gulch to the Anaconda city limits, Yankee Doodle Creek drainage to and including Moulton Reservoir, and Basin Creek drainage to and including the South Butte water supply reservoir.  Warm Springs Creek near Warm Springs from the headwaters to Meyers Dam has a use classification of A-1. The Clark Fork River from Cottonwood Creek to the confluence with the Little Blackfoot River is classified as C-1.  The same river is classified as C-2 from Warm springs Creek to Cottonwood Creek.  All other streams are classified B-1.

                                                                                                       Figure 1. Location of the Upper Clark Fork Phase 2 TPA

A-Closed streams must be maintained suitable for drinking, culinary, and food processing purposes after simple disinfection. Streams classified A-1 are suitable for drinking, culinary and food processing purposes after conventional treatment for removal of naturally present impurities, whereas waters classified B-1 must also be suitable for these same uses after conventional treatment for any impurities, whether naturally present or not. Both A-1 and B-1 classified waters must be suitable for bathing, swimming, and recreation; growth and propagation of salmonid fishes and associated aquatic life, waterfowl, and furbearers; and agricultural and industrial water supply.  Streams classified as C-1 or C-2 do not have to be maintained suitable for drinking water.  This is the main difference between the ‘B’ and ‘C’ classification.  The ‘1’ and ‘2’ denotes the suitability of propagation of salmonid fishes and associated aquatic life with ‘1’ being suitable growth and ‘2’ being marginal growth.

 

Silver Bow Creek is an I classified water, which means that the goal of the State of Montana is for it to fully support all designated uses. Waters that are determined not to be supporting their designated uses are considered impaired and are placed on Montana’s list of impaired waters. Impaired waterbodies and their associated probable causes and sources of impairment are published within Montana’s biennial Water Quality Integrated Report.                                                                                                                        

                                                                                                                                                                        [Click on map to enlarge]

 

Montana’s state law, and the federal Clean Water Act that was established by Congress in 1972, require development of total maximum daily loads (TMDLs) for all waterbodies impaired by a pollutant (e.g., metals, nutrients, sediment, temperature). A TMDL is the maximum amount of a pollutant that a waterbody can receive and still meet water quality standards (think of a TMDL as a loading rate). TMDL development includes four main steps:

 

•Assessing the impaired waterbody’s existing water quality conditions and comparing those conditions to Montana’s water quality standards. During this step, measurable target values are set to help evaluate the stream’s condition in relation to the applicable water quality standards.

•Quantifying the amount of the pollutant contribution from each significant source

•Determining the total allowable load of the pollutant to the waterbody (i.e., the TMDL)

•Allocating the total allowable pollutant load into individual loads for each significant source (referred to as load allocations for nonpoint sources and wasteload allocations for point sources)

 

A TMDL document will be published for this project and will include information and results from each of these four steps. The document will also include recommended land management activities for improving water quality in this project area, and a monitoring strategy to evaluate progress toward attainment of water quality standards.

 

For more information about the development of TMDLs, please see the What is a TMDL? page on this site or download our pamphlet: Understanding the TMDL Process (580 kb).

 

Project Overview

Thirty-two waterbody segments in the Upper Clark Fork Phase 2 project area are listed in the “2012 Water Quality Integrated Report” as not supporting or partially supporting one or more designated uses. Table 1 below shows the waterbody segments that will be addressed in this document. Figures 2 and 3 below show the streams and/or stream segments involved in TMDL development for this project.

 

Figure 2. Streams for Sediment TMDL Development                Figure 3. Streams for Nutirent TMDL Development  

                              

[Click on map to enlarge]                                                                      [Click on map to enlarge]

 

Table 1. Water Quality Impairment Causes for the Upper Clark Fork Phase 2 Project Area Addressed within this Document 

Waterbody & Location Description

Impairment Cause

Pollutant Category

Impairment Cause Status

CLARK FORK, Cottonwood Creek to Warm Springs

Alteration in stream-side or littoral vegetative covers

Not a Pollutant

Addressed by sediment TMDL in this document

Low flow alterations

Not a Pollutant

Addressed by sediment TMDL in this document

Sedimentation/Siltation

Sediment

Sediment TMDL contained in this document

CLARK FORK, the Little Blackfoot River to Cottonwood Creek

Alteration in stream-side or littoral vegetative covers

Not a Pollutant

 Addressed by sediment TMDL in this document

Physical substrate habitat alterations

Not a Pollutant

Addressed by sediment TMDL in this document

Low flow alterations

Not a Pollutant

Addressed by sediment TMDL in this document

Sedimentation/Siltation

Sediment

Sediment TMDL contained in this document

CLARK FORK, Flint Creek to Little Blackfoot River

Alteration in stream-side or littoral vegetative covers

Not a Pollutant

 Addressed by sediment TMDL in this document

Physical substrate habitat alterations

Not a Pollutant

Addressed by sediment TMDL in this document

Low flow alterations

Not a Pollutant

Addressed by sediment TMDL in this document

Sedimentation/Siltation

Sediment

Sediment TMDL contained in this document

DEMPSEY CREEK, the national  forest

boundary to mouth (Clark Fork River)

 

Nitrate/Nitrite

Nutrients

Not impaired based on 2012 assessment

Nitrogen (Total)

Nutrients

TN TMDL contained in this document

Phosphorus (Total)

Nutrients

TP TMDL contained in this document

DUNKLEBERG CREEK, T9N R12W S2 to mouth (Un-named Canal), T10N

R11W S30

Nitrogen (Total)

Nutrients

TN TMDL contained in this document

Phosphorus (Total)

Nutrients

TP TMDL contained in this document

GOLD CREEK, the forest boundary to

mouth (Clark Fork River)

Nitrogen (Total)

Nutrients

Not impaired based on 2012 assessment

Phosphorus (Total)

Nutrients

TP TMDL contained in this document

HOOVER CREEK, headwaters to Miller

Lake

Phosphorus (Total)

Nutrients

TP TMDL contained in this document

HOOVER CREEK, Miller Lake to mouth

(Clark Fork River)

Nitrogen (Total)

Nutrients

TN TMDL contained in this document

Phosphorus (Total)

Nutrients

TP TMDL contained in this document

LOST CREEK, the south State Park

boundary to mouth (Clark Fork River) 

Nitrate/Nitrite

Nutrients

Addressed by TN TMDL contained in this document

Nitrogen (Total)

Nutrients

TN TMDL contained in this document

PETERSON CREEK, headwaters to Jack

Creek

Phosphorus (Total)

Nutrients

TP TMDL contained in this document

Nitrogen (Total)

Nutrients

TN TMDL contained in this document

Total Kjeldahl Nitrogen (TKN)

Nutrients

Addressed by TN TMDL contained in this document

PETERSON CREEK, Jack Creek to mouth (Clark Fork River)

Phosphorus (Total)

Nutrients

TP TMDL contained in this document

Nitrogen (Total)

Nutrients

TN TMDL contained in this document

SILVER BOW CREEK, headwaters to mouth (Clark Fork River)

Physical substrate habitat alterations

Not a Pollutant

Addressed by sediment TMDL in this document

Nitrates

Nutrients

Addressed by TN TMDL contained in this document

Sedimentation/Siltation

Sediment

Sediment TMDL contained in this document

Nitrogen (Total)

Nutrients

TN TMDL contained in this document

Phosphorus (Total)

Nutrients

TP TMDL contained in this document

WILLOW CREEK, headwaters to T4N

R10W S30 

Phosphorus (Total)

Nutrients

TP TMDL contained in this document

WILLOW CREEK, T4N R10W S30 to

mouth (Mill Creek), T4N R10W S11

Phosphorus (Total)

Nutrients

TP TMDL contained in this document

Nitrogen (Total)

Nutrients

TN TMDL contained in this document

1. All waterbody segments within Montana’s Water Quality Integrated Report are indexed to the National Hydrography Dataset (NHD)

  

Project Contacts

TMDLs

Contact

Agency

Email

Phone

Project Coordinator

Jordan Tollefson

DEQ

jtollefson@mt.gov

(406) 444-5341

Project Manager:

Sediment

Nutrients

Christian Schmidt

DEQ

cschmidt2@mt.gov

(406) 444-6777


Page Released: December 9, 2013

Last Updated:                July 7, 2014

 

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