Background

The Muddy Creek watershed planning process began in 2008 to address fecal coliform pollution, streambank erosion, and other issues of concern to local residents. Much has been accomplished in the interim. An approved watershed-based plan has been developed, a pilot project has been installed on Kitchen Creek, a State of the Watershed report has been distributed to watershed residents, datasets have been compiled, and additional analyses have been conducted.



The TMDL

The United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) requires that each state submit a list of its polluted water bodies. The West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection (WVDEP) collects data to compile this list and updates it every two years. Ultimately, WVDEP must develop a written clean-up plan, known as a total maximum daily load (TMDL), for every water body that is not meeting standards. The TMDL identifies pollutant sources contributing to water body impairment and assigns pollution reductions to the various sources by sector. Muddy Creek and its tributaries were included in the 2008 Greenbrier River TMDL. Several streams in the Muddy Creek watershed are impaired by fecal coliform bacteria. Most of the fecal coliform in Muddy Creek is associated with agricultural use or failing septic systems. For more details on the reductions in the TMDL, please revisit the Muddy Creek watershed-based plan (WBP).

For more background on TMDLs:

USEPA’s TMDL page

WVDEP's TMDL page


The Watershed-Based Plan

The Muddy Creek WBP was developed to present strategies for meeting the fecal coliform TMDL. The report begins with an introduction to the watershed and discussion of the TMDL findings. In Section 4, projects are suggested to reduce fecal coliform loads; many of these in the agricultural sector would also serve to address sedimentation issues. Section 5 presents load reductions and cost estimates for the projects described in the plan. Section 8 consists of a schedule and tentative timeline for the remediation work.

The updated plan, highlighted at right, includes:

  • A new watershed prioritization ranking for both agricultural and septic remediation
  • A summary of recent progress in the watershed
  • A refined septic system vulnerability analysis
  • An updated implementation schedule

Updated Muddy Creek watershed-based plan

The original watershed-based plan was approved by USEPA in 2009. A revised version is presented here.