Beneficial Use Goals

Ohio has a variety of high quality water resources. Goals have been set to track trends in water quality for many years. In the early 1990s, Ohio EPA established a goal of fully attaining the designated aquatic life use in 80 percent of Ohio’s streams and rivers by 2010. The purpose of the goal was not to supersede the Clean Water Act goal of 100 percent attainment for all uses, but rather to provide a reasonable target against which to track water quality improvements in Ohio. The 2010 Integrated Report marked the final accounting of “80 by 2010” goal progress and proposed new goals for the aquatic life beneficial use. New goals for all four beneficial uses included in the Integrated Report were established in the 2012 report. Progress toward these goals is discussed in each IR cycle. In the 2016 Integrated Report, goals for the four beneficial uses were established, with the expectation that progress toward the goals will be reported every two years in future Integrated Reports. The tables in each link below list the goal; the statistic that will be tracked to measure progress; and the baseline and current status for each goal. A summary of the 2020 beneficial use goals is located in the tabs below.

Aquatic Life Use

Goal

Statistic to be Tracked

Baseline

Update

Aquatic Life Use

100% full aquatic life use attainment on all Ohio large rivers by 2020

% assessed miles in full attainment of biological WQS criteria

(Large rivers drain more than 500 square miles.)

93% (794 of 852 large river miles assessed)

Total large river miles assessed: 852 of 1227 (69%)

Source: 2010 IR

Data range: 1999-2008

87.4% (1063 of 1216 large river miles assessed)

Total large river miles assessed: 1216 of 1248 (98%)

Source: 2016 IR

Data range: 2003-2014

80% full aquatic life use attainment on Ohio's principal streams and small rivers by 2020

% assessed sites in full attainment of biological WQS criteria

(Principal stream and small river sites drain between 20 and 500 square miles.)

61% (944 of 1,538 principal stream and small river sites assessed)

Source: 2010 IR

Data range: 1999-2008

66% (1063 of 1,608 principal stream and small river sites assessed)

Source: 2016 IR

Data range: 2005-2014

Identify more high quality waters

Designate an additional 500 miles of stream, small river, and large river reaches from undesignated, WWH, or other lower tier aquatic life use to EWH

2,222 field verified EWH miles

Source: Ohio WQS (OAC 3745-1, effective 10/9/09)

Data range: 1990-2007

2811 field verified EWH miles (current as of WQS use designation rulemakings effective 11/30/2015, plus additional field verifications of existing and recommended EWH use in select basins sampled from 2009-2014)

Net new miles since 2010 IR baseline: 589 (96 recommended or field verified EWH stream and river reaches)

For this cycle, 266 miles (35 recommended or field verified EWH stream or stream reaches)

Source: Ohio WQS (OAC 3745-1) and basin TSDs

Maintain adequate monitoring coverage on Ohio's principal and small rivers

# of sites assessed in 10-year period that have between 20- to 500-square-mile drainage area

1,538 sites

Source: 2010 IR

Data range: 1999-2008

1,608 sites

Source: 2016 IR

Data range: 2005-2014

       

Aquatic Life Use Attainment Goal Status

   

Human Health Use

Goal

Statistic to be Tracked

Baseline

Update

Human Health Use (Fish Tissue)

More fish from Ohio's waters will be safe to eat by 2020

Levels of contaminants (mercury & PCBs) in sport fish compared with level in 2010

Not applicable

To be calculated in 2019 with 2009-2018 data.

Number of AUs listed as impaired for fish consumption compared to the 2010 IR

33% of AUs were impaired, and 87% of LRAUs

Source: 2010 IR

Data range: 1999-2008

To be calculated in 2019 with 2009-2018 data.

       

Public Drinking Water Supply Use

Goal

Statistic to be Tracked

Baseline

Update

Public Drinking Water Supply Use

All drinking water sources will attain WQS by 2020

Of those assessed, % intakes/assessment units attaining for nitrates, atrazine, and cryptosporidia

Nitrate: 93% attainment Atrazine: 71% attainment Crypto: insufficient data

Source: 2010 IR

Data range: 2004-2008

Nitrate: 91% attainment Atrazine: 81% attainment Crypto: 100% attainment

Source: 2016 IR

Data range: 2010-2015

All drinking water sources will be assessed (nitrate and atrazine) by 2020

% intakes/zones assessed

Nitrate: 34% assessed Atrazine: 13% assessed

Source: 2010 IR

Data range: 2004-2008

Nitrate: 43% assessed Atrazine: 21% assessed

Source: 2016 IR

Data range: 2010-2015

       

Recreation Use

Goal

Statistic to be Tracked

Baseline

Update

Recreation Use

Ohio beaches and canoeing streams will be safe for swimming (meet WQS) by 2020

Lake Erie beaches below E. coli WQS on 90% of recreation days (single sample maximum), using most recent 5 years of data

5 of 23 (22%) major public beaches met target

Source: 2010 IR

Data range: 2004-2008

8 of 65 (23%) public beaches met target

Source: 2016 IR

Data range: 2011-2015

For state park beaches, 90% of E. coli samples collected in past 5 years are below the bathing beach E. coli criterion

57 of 77 (75%) state park beaches met target

Source: 2010 IR

Data range: 2004-2008

46 of 68 (67%) state park beaches met target

Source: 2016 IR

Data range: 2011-2015

% of assessed stream sites meeting seasonal geo mean E. coli criteria, using most recent 5 years of data

Aggregate: 587 of 1,598 (37%) 

Class A: 165 of 349 (47%)

Class B: 419 of 1,229 (34%)

Class C: 3 of 20 (15%)

Source: 2010 IR

Data range: 2004-2008

Aggregate: 1,031 of 3,803 (27%)

Class A: 556 of 1,621 (33%)

Class B: 473 of 2,172 (22%)

Class C: 2 of 10 (20%)

Source: 2016 IR

Data range: 20011-2015

Maintain adequate monitoring coverage on Ohio's watersheds, large rivers and beaches

# of sites assessed (bacteria data in 5-year period)

Watersheds: 472 of 1,538 (31%) assessed

Large rivers: 15 of 38 (40%) assessed

Beaches: 23 of 23 (100%) assessed

Source: 2010 IR

Data range: 2004-2008

Watersheds: 697 of 1,538 (45%) assessed

Large rivers: 17 of 38 (45%) assessed

Beaches: 65 of 65 (100%) assessed

Source: 2016 IR

Data range: 2011-2015

       

Monitoring Load Reduction Progress for Lake Erie and the Ohio River

Goal

Statistic to be Tracked

Baseline

Update

Monitoring Load Reduction Progress for Lake Erie and the Ohio River

Develop and begin to implement a strategy for adequate monitoring coverage to calculate loadings from all significant watersheds to Lake Erie and the Ohio River

 

# of sites at or near the mouths of major watersheds that have flow gages and water quality sampling frequently enough to calculate loads with an acceptable degree of certainty (e.g. following Northeast-Midwest Institute or GLWQA Annex 4 recommendations)

 

 

Nine watersheds currently have flow gages and daily monitoring near the mouth of the watershed: Maumee, Portage, Sandusky, Cuyahoga, Muskingum, Scioto, and the Great Miami. Two watersheds which may have adequate data now, but are funded by short-term grants: Vermillion and Black.

 

 

Goal established 2016