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Nine Eagles Lake
view of nine eagles lake in the summer
Water Quality Improvement Plans

Iowa's streams, lakes and rivers need improvement. But where do we start?

Water quality improvement plans investigate streams and lakes on Iowa's impaired waters list. The ultimate goal is to improve water quality and remove streams and lakes from the impaired list. The plans, developed by the DNR, use research results and the public's input to help reduce the amount of pollutants reaching our water.

Water quality improvement plans identify and locate water quality problems in a stream or lake, and suggest ways that communities can improve their stream or lake to meet Iowa's water quality standards.

Schedule of future improvement plans

Final plans


DNR Contact

Jeff Berckes
Water Quality Improvement Plan (TMDL) Program Coordinator


About Water Quality Improvement Plans

 + iowa water quality improvement plan development

1. stream or lake placed on impaired waters list.

2. the dnr meets with iowans to learn about problems and possible causes of those problems in a watershed of an impaired stream or lake.

3. dnr drafts a water quality improvement plan, which includes:

  • inventory of sources of pollution in the watershed.
  • actual tmdl calculation as described above.
  • water quality restoration plan (also called an "implementation plan") to be put into action by local groups in the watershed.

4. the dnr asks iowans to review the draft water quality improvement plan.

5. the dnr meets again with iowans to gather their comments on the plan and discuss how locals can use the plan to create a local watershed improvement group and project.

6. locals use information in the water quality improvement plan to form a local watershed group and apply for grant funding to get the project started. learn more about creating a watershed group.