TOTAL MAXIMUM DAILY LOAD REPORT
A Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) is a regulatory term in the U.S. Clean Water Act (CWA), describing a value of the maximum amount of a pollutant that a body of water can receive while still meeting water quality standards. Alternatively, TMDL is an allocation of that water pollutant deemed acceptable to the subject receiving waters.
TMDLs have been used extensively by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and state environmental agencies in implementing the CWA by establishing maximum pollution limits for industrial wastewater dischargers. EPA published regulations in 1992 establishing TMDL procedures. Application of TMDL has broadened significantly in the last decade to include many watershed-scale efforts. This process incorporates both point source and nonpoint source pollutants within a watershed.
The CWA requires states to compile a lists of water bodies that do not fully support beneficial uses such as aquatic life, fisheries, drinking water, recreation, industry, or agriculture. These inventories are known as 303(d) Lists and characterize waters as fully supporting, impaired, or in some cases threatened for beneficial uses.