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Trinity River: A TMDL Project for PCBs

A project to develop TMDLs and reduce polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) in fish that live in portions of the Trinity River

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Watershed Counties: Dallas, Ellis, Kaufman, Navarro, Parker, Tarrant
Parameter: Polychlorinated Biphenyls (PCBs)
River Basin: Trinity River
Segments: 0805, 0806, 0829, 0841

Background and Goals

In nine assessment areas of four segments of the upper Trinity River, concentrations of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) are elevated in fish tissue. As a result, the Texas Department of State Health Services has issued a fish possession ban and a fish consumption advisory for various portions of the affected segments of the Upper Trinity River (Segment 0805), the Lower West Fork Trinity River (Segment 0841), the Clear Fork Trinity River Below Benbrook Lake (segment 0829), and the West Fork Trinity River Below Lake Worth (Segment 0806). The combined watersheds of all four segments cover 1,540 square miles.

The goal of this project is to reduce PCBs in fish tissue so that it is safe to eat fish caught in the affected segments through development of total maximum daily loads. A TMDL is like a budget for pollutants. It estimates the amount of a pollutant that a water body can receive and still support its designated uses. The load is then allocated among the sources of pollution within the watershed, and measures to reduce pollutant loads are developed as necessary. A TMDL is part of the state's Water Quality Management Plan after it is adopted by the commission and approved by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

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Public Participation

The TCEQ actively seeks the participation of local stakeholders. Staff are informing the public about this project through meetings and notices in print and electronic media. The meetings are open to everyone.

Meeting Records

The documents below are provided in PDF.

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Project Documents

Help downloading files.

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For More Information

Please e-mail us at, and reference the Trinity River PCBs project in the subject line. Or call us at 512-239-6682.

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