Campaign-Boulder Creek E.coli Impairment and Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL)
Boulder Creek is an impaired stream from 13th street to the confluence of South Boulder Creek. The impaired section run through the City of Boulder and through portions of Boulder County. Boulder Creek does not meet water quality standards for recreational use due to E coli which is an indicator of fecal coliform pollution greater than 126 cf/ 100 ml. It is possible that impairment may extend some distance upstream from the 13th -street location and can potentially be determined from monitoring data. Concentrations of E coli at 126 cf/100 ml represent a risk to swimmers, waders and others who have body contact in the creek (3.5% risk); this risk is higher with higher concentrations that are noted in the summer during low flow conditions. There is a high probability that the citizens of Boulder (and their children) and users of Boulder Creek do not know about this impairment since there is no signage and public outreach about the problem. Tubers, swimmers, waders and children/parents need to be made aware of the potential risks of recreating in Boulder Creek.
A Total Maximum Daily Loading (TMDL) assessment was pro-actively done by the City of Boulder using a consultant (Tetra Tech). This TMDL was submitted to CDPHE and approved by EPA in 2008. It is not clear if a formal Implementation Plan and Monitoring Plan was developed by the City of Boulder.
Notify citizens of Boulder and Boulder Creek users about the E Coli impairment and gain support in addressing/mitigating impairment from the local community.
1. Obtain and review City of Boulder E coli data via information request. Evaluate recent E Coli concentrations over time. A TMDL Monitoring Plan nor an Implementation Plan exist. Review the Boulder Watershed Plan 2015.
2. Obtain and review the new TMDL Implementation Plan due for completion in early 2019; try to have input into the plan before finalization.
3. Review information and assess progress (if any). Contact other MS4 stakeholders (Boulder County, Boulder School District and University of Colorado).
4. Contact the Boulder Camera about OpEd or news article opportunities and timing. On Going
5. Develop a draft article for the Boulder Camera
6. Send a draft Op Ed copy to the City of Boulder and Boulder County and CDPHE for comment before sending it to Boulder Camera (Not sure about this).
7. Make final changes and send to Boulder Camera. Direct the public to our website and provide feedback.
8. Address public comments on our website
9. Work with the City of Boulder and public to help monitor, mitigate and improve Boulder Creek
10. Consider having a water quality dash board on Waterkeeper Website based upon E Coli monitoring results.
11. Review monitoring data over time and assess progress with the City of Boulder and other stakeholders. Evaluate need for independent monitoring team (possible student support).
12. Delist E Coli and make Boulder Creek non-impaired for recreational uses.