The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) recently released the 2020 Impaired Waters list, which could have a significant impact on your wastewater treatment facility.

This year, 528 new water bodies and 728 impairments were added to the list. We urge each community to review the list to determine if there are any new impairments for water bodies downstream of your facility’s discharge. Be sure that this information makes it to your wastewater staff and/or consulting engineers to make that review. If your wastewater team identifies any proposed impaired waters downstream of your discharge, it is critical to evaluate those impairments to determine the potential impact on your facility. If a proposed impairment will impact your facility, your wastewater team should request the background data to confirm that MPCA’s decision is accurate. If your team believes the impairment decision is inaccurate, you should provide comments to MPCA.

MPCA occasionally makes mistakes in its impairment designations and it can be a difficult and lengthy process to correct them after the fact. You may reach out to MPCA staff with questions or data requests by contacting Miranda Nichols at The deadline for comments is Tuesday, Jan. 14.