City of Talent Oregon / Public Works / Stormwater / Water Quality

Water Quality

Water Quality is regulated by federal, state and local agencies to protect the health of the public and the environment; it is assessed by measuring and tracking: acidity (pH), temperature, oxygen, nitrogen, phosphate, bacteria and specific pollutants in waterbodies. These agencies establish water quality regulations through legislation, set water quality benchmarks, and monitor waterbodies for potential violations and health issues.
 
Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) is a pollution budget that factors in three elements: (1) point-source pollution, (2) non-point source pollution and an acceptable (3) margin of safety to determine what will be required in order to meet Oregon water quality standards. Each pollutant issue has a specific TMDL calculation made to address it. The Clean Water Act requires TMDL calculations for waterbodies on the State 303(d) “Threatened and Impaired Waters List.” Bear Creek and of its tributaries are currently listed as: impaired.​ Point Source Pollution
Point source pollution pours into a waterbody at Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore. Image courtesy of USEPA, licensed under CC BY 2.0.
   
National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) Permits Program regulates municipal, industrial and some agricultural operations that convey point-source pollution into U.S. surface waters, it too was authorized by the Clean Water Act. The City of Talent participates in this permit program because we deliver point-source pollutants (from storm drains) into Bear and Wagner Creek.

Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) Phase II Permits are required for smaller urban populations of less than 100,000. MS4s are allowed to jointly develop and implement a Stormwater Management Program plan with other nearby MS4s that must also obtain permit coverage. Rogue Valley Sewer Services (RVSS) is the Phase II permit holder for Talent, Central Point, Phoenix and urbanized, unincorporated Jackson County.
Non-point source
Non-point source pollution from this coastal Florida community empties into the ocean. Image courtesy of NOAA, licensed under CC BY 2.0.
 
Related:
Bear Creek Watershed TMDLs
Talent’s TMDL Implementation Plan
Oregon’s TMDL Program
RVSS Stormwater Management Program (SWMP)
RVSS Phase II Stormwater Permit