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Water Quality Technical Experts Meet Aug. 21, Discuss Optional Copper Model for Standards
Posted: 07/18/2014

A second DNR meeting with technical scientific experts will focus on possible changes to copper criteria in Iowa’s water quality standards. The meeting will be held August 21 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. in Conference Room 2 North at the Wallace Building, 502 E 9th St., Des Moines.

The DNR is considering the optional use of a new Biotic Ligand Model (BLM) to develop site-specific water quality criteria for copper. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency updated its 2007 aquatic life freshwater quality criteria for copper using this model.

To use the optional BLM, the DNR must add this choice to its water quality standards through rulemaking. The DNR will continue its discussion on the use of the BLM with technical scientific experts in the August 21 meeting. 

The DNR first met with the technical scientific experts June 24. Discussion included concerns surrounding sampling frequency, types of tests, limitations of sampling methods and analytical costs. The second meeting will further explore these issues.

Once the proposed draft BLM rule and associated draft guidance are prepared to finalize, the DNR will begin formal rulemaking activities with public meetings and opportunities for public comment.

Questions about this process should be directed to Rochelle Weiss, DNR water quality standards coordinator, 515-281-4736, or