(865) 522-7007CONTACT

Administrative Rules

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Every three years the State of Tennessee revisits its Water Quality Standards (Triennial Review). This review provides an opportunity to influence the decisions made on water quality standards for the next three years. TCWN plays a leadership role in the review and monitoring the State’s new procedures and rules and encourages citizen involvement in the public process.


  • track implementation of the State’s new antidegradation procedures
  • clarify how the State defines Tier II waters in Tennessee
  • institute a parameter-by-parameter approach for implementation of antidegradation rules, rather than a waterbody approach
  • subject permit renewal to the full antidegradation process (no grandfathering of existing discharges)
  • designate additional Tier III waters
  • ensure proper management of Tier III waters no degradation
  • obtain a favorable definition of degradation


Water Quality Criteria:

  • Dissolved oxygen – prevent a proposed lowering of the standard in select ecoregions
  • Nutrients – establish numeric criteria for streams and reservoirs/lakes
  • Sediment – establish numeric criteria to address the most significant source of pollution in Tennessee’s waters


303d List:

The State of Tennessee is required to put all waterbodies that do not meet water quality standards on a list of ‘Impaired Waterbodies’ also known as the 303(d) list every two years.

  • Encourage the use of data from other agencies, universities, and citizen groups in the decision-making process
  • Create a priority ranking for TMDL development
  • Include “threatened” waterbodies; and create required criteria for de-listing.

Click here for TCWN's analysis of the 303(d) list in your county.


TMDLs: TMDLs are required by the Clean Water Act to be developed by each state for each waterbody that appears on the State’s 303(d) list. Many inadequacies exist in the development of these plans, particularly with respect to on-the-ground implementation.

  • Review and comment on those TMDLs with major policy implications
  • Support on-the-ground implementation of TMDLs
  • Highlight overall program problems
  • Track proposed changes to TMDL regulations at the national level.

Tennessee Clean Water Network

625 Market St.
Knoxville, TN 37901
Mailing Address:
PO BOX 1521
Knoxville, TN 37901
Office: 865.522.7007
Fax: 865.525.4988

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