DAR File No. 38288

This rule was published in the March 1, 2014, issue (Vol. 2014, No. 5) of the Utah State Bulletin.

Environmental Quality, Water Quality

Section R317-2-14

Numeric Criteria

Notice of Proposed Rule


DAR File No.: 38288
Filed: 02/11/2014 03:46:45 PM


Purpose of the rule or reason for the change:

Section R317-2-7.1 allows site-specific standards when the natural or unalterable conditions prevent the attainment of the statewide standard. In this case, the statewide standard for total dissolved solids to protect the designated use Class 4 (agricultural use) waters is 1,200 mg/l. After a two year intensive study to supplement the existing historical data, a report titled Proposed Site-Specific Standard for Total Dissolved Solids, Blue Creek, Box Elder County, Utah was produced by the Utah Division of Water Quality and drafted on 09/04/2013. This amendment is a site-specific standard based on natural conditions proposed for Blue Creek reservoir and Blue Creek, Box Elder County, Utah.

Summary of the rule or change:

The site-specific total dissolved solids standards would be added as a footnote to Table 2.14.1 in Section R317-2-14. For Blue Creek reservoir, a site-specific total dissolved solids standard of 2,200 mg/l as a one-hour maximum is proposed. For Blue Creek from Great Salt Lake to Blue Creek reservoir, a site-specific total dissolved solids standard of 6,300 mg/l as a one-hour maximum and 3,900 mg/l as a 30-day average is proposed.

State statutory or constitutional authorization for this rule:

  • Section 19-5-105
  • 33 U.S.C. 1251
  • Section 19-5-110
  • 33 U.S.C. 1311-1317
  • 33 U.S.C. 1329

Anticipated cost or savings to:

the state budget:

This change is anticipated to have no impacts on the state budget. The costs for supporting the proposed total dissolved solids standard are the same as the costs for the existing total dissolved solids standard.

local governments:

This change is anticipated to have no impacts on the local governments. The proposed site-specific standard impacts Utah entities required to have discharge permits and local governments do not discharge to the affected waters.

small businesses:

This change is anticipated to have no impacts on small businesses. The proposed site-specific standard impacts Utah entities required to have discharge permits and small businesses do not discharge to the affected waters.

persons other than small businesses, businesses, or local governmental entities:

This change is anticipated to result in significant cost avoidance for the existing permitted discharge to Blue Creek. To comply with the existing 1,200 mg/l by treating their effluent would require the expenditure of significant resources. Potential future businesses that locate in the Blue Creek watershed and have a permitted discharge would also benefit from reduced costs for treatment.

Compliance costs for affected persons:

This change is anticipated to be neutral or reduce costs for affected entities. The proposed site-specific standard impacts Utah entities required to have discharge permits. The proposed change will increase the concentration of total dissolved solids in permitted discharges. If an entity's discharge exceeds 1,200 mg/l (current standard), the proposed change will reduce the need for treatment and associated costs. If an entity's discharge is less than 1,200 mg/l, the change will have no effect.

Comments by the department head on the fiscal impact the rule may have on businesses:

These changes will appropriately decrease costs on affected businesses. Under the existing rule, affected businesses are required to remove total dissolved solids from their effluent to concentrations that are lower than naturally occur in the creek.

Amanda Smith, Executive Director

The full text of this rule may be inspected, during regular business hours, at the Division of Administrative Rules, or at:

Environmental Quality
Water QualityRoom DEQ, Third Floor
195 N 1950 W

Direct questions regarding this rule to:

  • Judy Etherington at the above address, by phone at 801-536-4344, by FAX at 801-536-4301, or by Internet E-mail at [email protected]

Interested persons may present their views on this rule by submitting written comments to the address above no later than 5:00 p.m. on:


Interested persons may attend a public hearing regarding this rule:

  • 03/05/2014 06:00 PM, Brigham City Library, 26 E Forest St, Conference Room, Brigham City, UT

This rule may become effective on:


Authorized by:

Walter Baker, Director


R317. Environmental Quality, Water Quality.

R317-2. Standards of Quality for Waters of the State.

R317-2-14. Numeric Criteria.


TABLE 2.14.1

Parameter           Domestic       Recreation and    Agri-
                     Source          Aesthetics      culture
                           1C        2A     2B         4
MEAN) (NO.)/100 ML)  (7)

E. coli                   206       126    206

     (NO.)/100 ML)  (7)E.
 coli                   668       409    668


     pH (RANGE)            6.5-9.0   6.5-9.0  6.5-9.0  6.5-9.0
     Turbidity Increase
       (NTU)                         10       10


     MG/L) (2)
     Arsenic               0.01                        0.1
     Barium                1.0
     Beryllium             <0.004     
     Cadmium               0.01                        0.01
     Chromium              0.05                        0.10
     Copper                                            0.2
     Lead                  0.015                       0.1
     Mercury               0.002
     Selenium              0.05                        0.05
     Silver                0.05

     Bromate               0.01
     Boron                                             0.75
     Chlorite              <1.0

     Fluoride (3)          1.4-2.4
     Nitrates as N         10
     Total Dissolved
       Solids (4)                                      1200
     (MAXIMUM pCi/L)

     Gross Alpha           15                          15
     Gross Beta            4 mrem/yr     Radium 226, 228
       (Combined)          5
     Strontium 90          8
     Tritium               20000
     Uranium               30


     2,4-D                 70
     2,4,5-TP              10
     Methoxychlor          40


     BOD (MG/L)                      5        5       5

     Nitrate as N (MG/L)             4        4
     Total Phosphorus as P
       (MG/L)(6)                     0.05     0.05

     (1)  Reserved
     (2)  The dissolved metals method involves filtration of the
sample in the field, acidification of the sample in the field, no
digestion process in the laboratory, and analysis by approved
laboratory methods for the required detection levels.
     (3)  Maximum concentration varies according to the daily
maximum mean air temperature.

     TEMP (C)       MG/L

     12.0           2.4
     12.1-14.6      2.2
     14.7-17.6      2.0
     17.7-21.4      1.8
     21.5-26.2      1.6
     26.3-32.5      1.4


Blue Creek and tributaries, Box Elder County, from Gunnison Bay
to Blue Creek Reservoir: one-hour maximum 6,300 mg/l, 30-day
average 3,900 mg/l

Blue Creek Reservoir and tributaries, Box Elder County,
one-hour maximum 2,200 mg/l

Castle Creek from confluence with the Colorado River to Seventh
Day Adventist Diversion: 1,800 mg/l;

Cottonwood Creek from the confluence with Huntington Creek to I-57:
3,500 mg/l;

Ferron Creek from the confluence with San Rafael River to Highway
10: 3,500 mg/l;

Huntington Creek and tributaries from the confluence with
Cottonwood Creek to U-10: 4,800 mg/l;

Ivie Creek and its tributaries from the confluence with Muddy Creek
to the confluence with Quitchupah Creek:
3,800 mg/l provided that total sulfate not exceed 2,000 mg/l to
protect the livestock watering agricultural existing use;

Ivie Creek and its tributaries from the confluence with Quitchupah
Creek to U10: 2,600 mg/l;

Lost Creek from the confluence with Sevier River to U.S. Forest
Service Boundary: 4,600 mg/l;

Muddy Creek and tributaries from the confluence with Ivie Creek
toU-10: 2,600 mg/l;

Muddy Creek from confluence with Fremont River to confluence with
Ivie Creek: 5,800 mg/l;

North Creek from the confluence with Virgin River to headwaters:
2,035 mg/l;

Onion Creek from the confluence with Colorado River to road
crossing above Stinking Springs: 3000 mg/l;

Brine Creek-Petersen Creek, from the confluence with the Sevier
River to U-119 Crossing: 9,700 mg/l;

Price River and tributaries from confluence with Green River to
confluence with Soldier Creek: 3,000 mg/l;

Price River and tributaries from the confluence with Soldier
Creek to Carbon Canal Diversion: 1,700 mg/l

Quitchupah Creek from the confluence with Ivie Creek to U-10:
3,800 mg/l provided that total sulfate not exceed
2,000 mg/l to protect the livestock watering agricultural
existing use;
Rock Canyon Creek from the confluence with Cottonwood Creek to
headwaters: 3,500 mg/l;

San Pitch River from below Gunnison Reservoir to the Sevier River:
2,400 mg/l;

San Rafael River from the confluence with the Green River to
Buckhorn Crossing: 4,100 mg/l;

San Rafael River from the Buckhorn Crossing to the confluence with
Huntington Creek and Cottonwood Creek: 3,500 mg/l;

Sevier River between Gunnison Bend Reservoir and DMAD Reservoir:
1,725 mg/l;

Sevier River from Gunnison Bend Reservoir to Clear Lake: 3,370

South Fork Spring Creek from confluence with Pelican Pond
Slough Stream to US 89                 1,450 mg/l (Apr.-Sept.)
                                       1,950 mg/l (Oct.-March)

Virgin River from the Utah/Arizona border to Pah Tempe Springs:
2,360 mg/l

     (5)  Investigations should be conducted to develop more
information where these pollution indicator levels are exceeded.
     (6)  Total Phosphorus as P (mg/l) indicator for
lakes and reservoirs shall be 0.025.
     (7) Where the criteria are exceeded and there is a reasonable
basis for concluding that the indicator bacteria E. coli are
primarily from natural sources (wildlife), e.g., in National
Wildlife Refuges and State Waterfowl Management Areas, the criteria
may be considered attained provided the density attributable to
non-wildlife sources is less than the criteria. Exceedences of
E. coli from nonhuman nonpoint sources will generally be addressed
through appropriate Federal, State, and local nonpoint source programs.
     Measurement of E. coli using the "Quanti-Tray 2000" procedure
is approved as a field analysis. Other EPA approved methods may
also be used.
     For water quality assessment purposes, up to 10% of
representative samples may exceed the 668 per 100 ml criterion
(for 1C and 2B waters) and 409 per 100 ml (for 2A waters). For
small datasets, where exceedences of these criteria are observed,
follow-up ambient monitoring should be conducted to better
characterize water quality.


. . . . . . .


KEY: water pollution, water quality standards

Date of Enactment or Last Substantive Amendment: [August 19, 2013]2014

Notice of Continuation: October 2, 2012

Authorizing, and Implemented or Interpreted Law: 19-5


Additional Information

More information about a Notice of Proposed Rule is available online.

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For questions regarding the content or application of this rule, please contact Judy Etherington at the above address, by phone at 801-536-4344, by FAX at 801-536-4301, or by Internet E-mail at [email protected].