The Role of Aquatic Invasive Species in State Listing of Impaired Waters and the TMDL Program: Seven Case Studies

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Aquatic invasive species degrade water quality by changing the natural characteristics of the water, reducing the abundance and diversity of native aquatic life, or impeding human uses of the water. The Environmental Law Institute (ELI), with funding from and in cooperation with the U.S. EPA, conducted research on seven states (California, Florida, Iowa, Massachusetts, New York, Ohio, and Washington) representing a range of geography, number of aquatic invasive species present, water quality standards, 303(d) listings for invasive species, and aquatic invasive species management programs. ELI examined how the adverse effects of aquatic invasive species have influenced water quality listings and TMDL (Total Maximum Daily Load as defined under the Clean Water Act) development and whether the TMDL program may affect other invasive species programs operated by the states.

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