Dickinson Bayou: A TMDL Project and Use Assessment for Bacteria
at FM 517
Basin: San Jacinto–Brazos Coastal
Segments: 1103, 1103A, 1103B, 1103C, 1104
- Project Overview (PDF)
- Background and Goals
- Adopted TMDLs
- Public Participation
- For More Information
High concentrations of bacteria measured in Dickinson Bayou Tidal, Segment 1103, and four of its tributaries might pose a health risk for people who swim or wade in the bayou. Bacteria from human and animal waste may indicate the presence of disease-causing microorganisms that may cause illness. Swimming and other forms of recreation in which people come into direct contact with the water are referred to as contact recreation in the state's standards for the quality of streams, lakes, and bays.
The TMDL project will characterize the sources of bacteria in the watershed of the bayou and develop a plan to improve water quality. The goal of the TMDL is to reduce bacteria concentrations to within acceptable risk levels for contact recreation.
The TCEQ will also conduct a recreational use survey and attainability analysis for part of the bayou. Recreational use-attainability analyses (RUAAs) are conducted to determine which of the four recreational use categories is appropriate for a particular water body. During an RUAA project, staff usually collect:
- Information on a water body, such as the presence or absence of water recreation activities, stream flow type, stream depth
- Information about the frequency and types of recreation for which the water body is currently used
- Data on physical conditions in a water body
On February 8, 2012, the commission adopted:
- Eight Total Maximum Daily Loads for Indicator Bacteria in Dickinson Bayou and Three Tidal Tributaries (PDF)
On June 6, 2012, the EPA approved the TMDLs, at which time they became part of the state’s Water Quality Management Plan. Learn more about the Water Quality Management Plan.
Stakeholders in the watershed have formed the Dickinson Bayou Watershed Partnership to implement activities that improve water quality in Dickinson Bayou. Information about the Partnership’s meetings is available on their Web site. The TCEQ is working with this existing forum to participate with the public in developing and implementing the TMDL project. Other partners include the Houston-Galveston Area Council, the Galveston Bay Estuary Program, and the Texas Cooperative Extension.
Meeting Records, TCEQ-Led Meetings
- August 24, 2011
- August 16, 2010
- March 25, 2010
- January 29, 2010
Please e-mail us at email@example.com, and reference the Dickinson Bayou Bacteria TMDL in the subject line. Or call us at 512-239-6682.