Bayou Lafourche Fecal Coliform Sources - LDEQ is currently working with Nicholls State University on the continuation of a similar project that ended in September 2009. The first project developed the approach and methods to identify "hot spots" of human contamination from faulty home sewage package plants along Bayou Lafourche. The release of untreated or improperly treated residential wastewater is a proposed cause of increased fecal coliform levels in the bayou. Historical data for Bayou Lafourche have failed to meet the criteria for acceptable water quality resulting in the development of a TMDL. The goal of this project is to identify contributing non-point source (NPS) contamination of anthropogenic contamination in the upper Bayou Lafourche watershed through detection of optical brighteners, recovery of fecal coliforms and viral indicators and nutrients from selected sites. Consolidating results will identify "hot spots", so that Best Management Practices (BMPs) may be instituted to address problem areas. For more information, click here.
Marsh Bayou - Marsh Bayou in the Calcasieu River Basin has been on the EPA's 303(d) list of impaired waters since 2002 for persistent high levels of fecal coliform bacteria and low levels of dissolved oxygen. The Water Surveys Section is working with non-point personnel on a project to assess the current state of Marsh Bayou. The Marsh Bayou Watershed Implementation Plan is a revision of the 2003 plan that includes new water quality data and information to assist local landowners and stakeholders to understand what actions they can take to improve the water quality in Marsh Bayou. Since Marsh Bayou has no "point source" wastewater discharges, the cause of impairment has been attributed to NPS pollution. Controlling existing sources and preventing new sources of NPS pollution should improve dissolved oxygen, reduce fecal coliform and restore water quality. Monthly monitoring of selected sites will help determine if water quality standards are being met. Marsh Bayou Implementation Plan
Turkey Creek - Turkey Creek is a major drainage channel in Franklin Parish that was damaged during the Ike-Gustav events of 2008 when an esimated 14" of rainfall occurred. The massive inflow of water caused bank erosion and debris build-up, while degrading the channel cross-section and diminishing the hydraulic capacity. A proposed project by the Franklin Parish Police Jury addresses the effects of the storms by rechanneling, removing sandbars and obstructions and restoring the hydraulic capacity of Turkey Creek. Working with non-point personnel, the Water Surveys Section conducted a survey on Turkey Creek in May 2011 to obtain background data before any modifications were made. Data collected included water quality samples, cross-sections, flow measurements, and data from continuous monitors.
Nutrient Gradient Project (Evaluation of Stressor-Response Relationships) - In response to growing concern over eutrophication of waterbodies, the EPA encourages states to develop a work plan for nutrient reduction and management. The LDEQ and EPA have agreed upon a plan to develop numeric nutrient criteria in Louisiana on an ecoregion and water body type basis (LDEQ 2006). Historical ambient water quality data are available as part of routine ambient monitoring and TMDL programs; however, these datasets lack the biological data need for a stressor-response analysis. This project is designed to evaluate the stressor-response relationships between nutrients and biological metrics (fish and chlorophyll a) in five Louisiana ecoregions. Data collected will be used to support nutrient criteria development for streams in each ecoregion.