Numeric Water Quality Criteria in the United States

October 05, 2021

Presenter: Brad Barnhart

Water quality standards in the United States are comprised of three core components, including designated uses, water quality criteria, and antidegradation requirements. This video presents general information on numeric water quality criteria and how they support water quality standards implemented in the United States. Examples of various numeric criteria are presented, and the processes used to derive aquatic life and human health water quality criteria recommendations by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) are also reviewed. This information should serve as a basis to better understand both EPA recommendations and state-derived water quality standards for waterbodies in the United States.