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Anacostia Riverkeeper v. Jackson

ELR Citation: 41 ELR 20251
Nos. No. 09-cv-97, (D.D.C., 07/25/2011)

A district court held that EPA's approval of a sediments and total suspended solids (TSS) TMDL for the Anacostia River in Maryland and Washington, D.C., was arbitrary and capricious. When developing a TMDL for a particular pollutant, the CWA and its implementing regulations require the state—in devising the TMDL—and EPA—in reviewing the proposed TMDL--to evaluate whether the load levels, once implemented, will protect all applicable water quality standards, including all designated uses and all water quality criteria. Here, there is insufficient evidence in the record to support EPA's suggestion that the final TMDL protects all designated uses. Accordingly, by approving a sediment/TSS TMDL that ignored the effects of sediment and TSS pollution on recreational and aesthetic uses of the Anacostia River, EPA acted arbitrarily and capriciously in violation of the APA and the CWA.