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Martin Creek Reservoir: Assessing the Safety of Fish Consumption

A completed project to assess the safety of consuming fish from Martin Creek Reservoir
photo of Martin Creek Reservoir
Martin Creek Reservoir

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Counties: Panola, Rusk
Parameter: Selenium
Basin: Sabine River
Segment: 0505F

Project Background and Goals

Martin Creek Reservoir is an impoundment of Martin Creek, located five miles southwest of Tatum (pop. 1,310). It was constructed in 1974 to serve as a cooling reservoir for a steam-electric power plant. The western shore of the reservoir forms a portion of the county line between Rusk and Panola Counties.

In 1992, the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS; then known as TDH) issued an advisory restricting the consumption of fish from the reservoir because selenium concentrations in the fish posed a risk to consumers. The goal of this project was to determine whether the consumption of fish from the reservoir still posed a threat to human health. The TCEQ worked with the DSHS to collect fish samples, conduct laboratory analyses, and characterize the risks to consumers from all contaminants found in fish-tissue samples.

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Project Status

After assessing all the data collected and characterizing the risks associated with all the contaminants found in fish tissue, the DSHS concluded that consumption of fish from Martin Creek Reservoir no longer poses a threat to human health. The fish consumption advisory was rescinded on October 14, 2004.

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For More Information

Please e-mail us at tmdl@tceq.texas.gov and reference the Martin Creek Reservoir in the subject line. Or call us at 512-239-6682.

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