First Water Quality Trading in California

Posted Date: 4/26/2012

K&A's work with the City of Santa Rosa, CA has led to the first approved nutrient credits for a Laguna de Santa Rosa pre-TMDL offset program. The City's sub-regional wastewater treatment plant discharge is required to meet a "net-zero" discharge for nutrients. This is being accomplished through an approved nutrient offset program in the City's NPDES permit. Absent credit estimation methods for a variety of non-point source crediting project opportunities, K&A guided regulators from the North Coast Regional Water Quality Control Board through a series of discussions and proposals. These activities led to the approved offset credits from dairy BMPs and stream habitat restoration.

Funded by a USDA Conservation Innovation Grant, K&A is now assisting the local Sotoyome Resource Conservation District in developing California's first water quality trading program focused on the Laguna TMDL and the City's needs. The nutrient TMDL being developed by the Regional Board will require other wastewater and municipal stormwater discharge reductions. Trading will provide a flexible compliance option to meet future required load reductions. Read more about this project in the project summary.

 
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