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Revising the Texas Surface Water Quality Standards

Summary of how the standards are revised.

Revision Process

The process to revise the Texas Surface Water Quality Standards (Standards) includes the public and is usually conducted at least every three years. Revisions address new information about pollutants, additional data about water quality conditions in specific segments, and new state and federal regulatory requirements.

Stakeholders in the review and revision process include the TCEQ, EPA, the general public, other governmental agencies, industries, municipalities, environmental groups, and others. Much of the coordination is done through the Surface Water Quality Standards Advisory Workgroup. There have been revisions to the Standards in 1967, 1973, 1981, 1984, 1988, 1995, 1997, 2000, 2010, and 2014.

The Procedures to Implement the Texas Surface Water Quality Standards (RG-194) (Implementation Procedures), which explain how the Standards are used in wastewater permitting, are reviewed and revised along with the Standards.

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2017 Revision

The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) published a notice in the March 6, 2015 issue of the Texas Register Exit the TCEQ requesting preliminary written comments for the next revision of the Standards by the close of business on April 6, 2015.  These comments will be used in the development of the 2017 revisions to the Standards. Written responses to these preliminary comments were not provided.  Any proposed revisions, whether resulting from these comments or not, will be subject to a formal public hearing and a public comment period prior to adoption.

The TCEQ commissioners granted formal approval to begin the rule making process in July of 2015.   Please see the draft revision timeline regarding draft dates for stakeholder meetings, hearing, and agenda dates.

Staff Contacts

For further information on the Standards, please contact Ms. Debbie Miller, Water Quality Planning Division, at (512) 239-1703. For further information on the Implementation Procedures, please contact Mr.Peter Schaefer, Water Quality Division, at (512) 239-4372.

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