“The objective of the Clean Water Act is to restore and maintain the chemical and physical, and the biological integrity of the Nation’s water.”
—Environmental Law Reporter
The Pollution Assessment Section (PAS) utilizes scientific methodologies in the assessment of the Los Angeles Watersheds. The PAS team monitors in-stream biological, physical/chemical, and habitat to evaluate and support the development of water quality standards for the City of Los Angeles. The identification and evaluation of the impacts of polluted urban run-off entails baseline monitoring of indicator bacteria and metals, and the characterization of channel flow rates and mass emissions. In addition to collecting water samples for biological/chemical analyses, PAS reviews existing methodologies; other storm-water monitoring programs, and provides scientific support for storm water related environmental issues.
The main and tributary channels of three watersheds, the Los Angeles River, Dominguez Channel and, Ballona Creek, are presently being monitored by PAS. Bacteria and metal samples are collected at 31 locations along these channels. The sampling frequency of varies from three times a month for main channels to once per month at the tributaries. Information can be utilized to identify and remediate illicitly discharges and the discharges from illicit connections. These data can be used to develop Total Maximum Daily Loads (TMDLs) for pollutants of concern and for compliance with the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) standards.