24.0206 Standards of Water Quality.

Cite as [A.S.A.C. § 24.0206]

The following standards apply to all territorial and ground waters including but not limited to fresh surface waters, ground waters, embayments, open coastal waters, and oceanic waters of the territory, except as otherwise provided in 24.0207 (Zones of Mixing):

(a) They shall be substantially free from materials attributable to sewage, industrial wastes, or other activities of man that will produce objectionable color, odor, or taste, either of itself or in combinations, or in the biota;

(b) They shall be substantially free from visible floating materials, grease, oil, scum, foam, and other floating material attributable to sewage, industrial wastes, or other activities of man;

(c) They shall be substantially free from materials attributable to sewage, industrial wastes, or other activities of man that will produce visible turbidity or settle to form objectionable deposits;

(d) They shall be substantially free from substances and conditions or combinations thereof attributable to sewage, industrial wastes, or other activities of man which may be toxic to' humans, other animals, plants, and aquatic life or produce undesirable aquatic life;

(e) The temperature shall not deviate more than 1.5 degrees Fahrenheit from conditions which would occur naturally and shall not fluctuate more than 1 degree Fahrenheit on an hourly basis or exceed 85 degree Fahrenheit due to the influence of other than natural causes;

(f) Radioactivity:

(1) Since human exposure to any ionizing radiation is undesirable, the concentration of radioactivity in natural waters will be maintained at the lowest practicable level.

(2) No radioactive materials shall be present in natural waters as a consequence of the failure of an installation to exercise appropriate controls to eliminate releases.

(3) The concentration of radioactivity shall not:

(A) result in accumulations or radioactivity in edible plants and animals that present a hazard to consumers or are harmful to aquatic or terrestrial life, as recommended by the Federal Radiation Council in the "Radiation Protection Guides";

(B) exceed 1/30 of the MPC values given for continuous occupational exposures in the National Bureau of Standards "Handbook No. 69", as revised; or

(C) exceed the current National Primary Drinking Water Regulations for waters used for public or domestic water supplies.

(g) Toxic Substances:

(1) Class 1 Surface Waters and Class 1 G Groundwater The concentration of toxic pollutants shall not exceed the more stringent of the aquatic life criteria for freshwater or the human health concentration criteria for consumption of water and organisms in the priority toxic pollutant table of the National Recommended Water Quality Criteria 2002, EPA-822-R-02-047, November 2002 (EPA 2002) or the most recent version.

(2) Class 2 Surface Water and Wetlands The concentration of toxic pollutants shall not exceed the more stringent of the aquatic life criteria for freshwater or the human health concentration criteria for consumption of water and organisms found in EPA 2002 or the most recent version.

(3) All Embayments, Open Coastal Waters and Ocean Waters

Except as may be allowed by the EQC within a Zone of Mixing (24.0207), the concentration of toxic pollutants shall not exceed the more stringent of the aquatic life criteria for marine waters or the human health concentration criteria for consumption of organisms found in EPA 2002 or the most recent version.

(4) Subject to USEPA approval, the EQC may from time to time adopt site-specific toxic pollutant criteria. Any such adoption shall involve public participation and be based upon site-specific data and studies demonstrating that the alternate criteria will support the propagation of aquatic life and protect the public health.

(h) Toxicity Requirements - Acute and Chronic

(1) All effluents containing materials attributable to the activities of man shall be considered harmful unless acceptable bioassay tests have shown otherwise. In its discretion the EQC may require the person responsible for the discharge of the effluent to perform bioassay tests on the effluent in question.

(2) Compliance with 24.0206(d) of these standards will be determined using indicator organisms, analysis of species diversity, population density, growth anomalies, bioassays, or other appropriate methods as specified by the EQC.

(3) The chronic affect on test organisms outside a zone of mixing, if one exists, in the water body receiving the effluent in question shall not be more than that for waters of the same water body that are unaffected by the discharge of pollutant, or, when necessary for other control water meeting the criteria described in the latest edition of "Standard Methods for the Examination of Water and Wastewater."

(4) Compliance with the above standards shall be evaluated with a 96-hour bioassay or short-term method for estimating chronic toxicity using methods described in the most recently updated versions of the following documents:

(A) EPA/821/R-02-013 Short-term Methods for Estimating the Chronic Toxicity of Effluents and Receiving Waters to Freshwater Organisms, Fourth Edition, 2002.

(B) EPA/600/4-90-027F Methods for Measuring the Acute Toxicity of Effluents and Receiving Waters to Freshwater and Marine Organisms, Cincinnati, Ohio, EMSL, Fourth Edition, 1993.

(C) EPA/600/R-95-136 Short-term Methods for Estimating the Chronic Toxicity of Effluents and Receiving Waters to West Coast Marine and Estuarine Organisms, Cincinnati, Ohio, EMSL, 1995.

(i) There shall be no changes in basin geometry or freshwater inflow that will alter current patterns in such a way as to adversely affect existing biological populations or sediment distribution. To protect estuarine organisms, no change in channels, basin geometry, or freshwater influx shall be made which would cause permanent changes in existing isohaline patterns of more than 10 percent.

(j) The following additional toxic standards shall apply:

(1) Arsenic: The human health numeric criteria for arsenic in the EPA 2002 publication are excluded from the American Samoa Water Quality Standards and instead, the American Samoa human health criteria for arsenic for freshwaters is 10 µg/l.

(2) Total Mercury: In addition to the methyl mercury criteria for human health from the EPA 2002 publication, the water column concentration of mercury shall not exceed 0.05 µg/l.

(3) Total Residual Chlorine: Total residual chlorine in any ambient water shall not exceed 11 micrograms per liter for fresh water and 7.5 micrograms per liter for marine waters.

(k) Fresh surface waters. The following standards apply specifically to all fresh surface waters of the territory:

Not to Exceed the

Parameter

Given Value

Turbidity (NTU)

5.0

Total phosphorus (µg/l as P)

150.0

Total nitrogen (µg/l as N)

300.0

Chlorophyll a (µg/l)

5.0

Light penetration depth (feet)

(To exceed given value 50% of the time)

65.0

Ammonia:

The ammonia toxicity standards for fresh and marine waters are tabulated in Appendix A.

Dissolved Oxygen:

Not less than 75% saturation or less than 6.0 mg/l. If the natural level of dissolved oxygen is less than 6.0 mg/l, the natural level shall become the standard.

pH:

The pH range shall be 6.5 to 8.6 and be within 0.2 pH units of that which would occur naturally.

Enterococci:

35 per 100 ml (geometric mean indicator density)

124 per 100ml (single sample maximum allowable density)

E. coli:

126 per 100 ml (geometric mean indicator density)

576 per 100ml (single sample maximum allowable density)

(l) Embayments.

The following standards apply to all embayments except Pago Pago Harbor, Fagatele Bay and Pala Lagoon:

Not to Exceed the

Parameter

Given Value

Turbidity (NTU)

0.35

Total phosphorus (µg/l as P)

20.0

Total nitrogen (µg/l as N)

150.0

Chlorophyll a (µg/l)

0.5

Light penetration depth (feet)

(To exceed given value 50% of the time)

120.0

Ammonia:

The ammonia toxicity standards for fresh and marine waters are tabulated in Appendix A.

Dissolved Oxygen:

Not less than 70% saturation or less than 5.0 mg/l. If the natural level of dissolved oxygen is less than 5.0 mg/l, the natural level shall become the standard.

pH:

The pH range shall be 6.5 to 8.6 and be within 0.2 pH units of that which would occur naturally.

Enterococci:

35 per 100 ml (geometric mean indicator density)

124 per 100ml (single sample maximum allowable density)

(m) Pago Pago Harbor

The following standards apply specifically to Pago Pago Harbor:

Not to Exceed the

Parameter

Given Value

Turbidity (NTU)

0.75

Total phosphorus (µg/l as P)

30.0

Total nitrogen (µg/l as N)

200.0

Chlorophyll a (µg/l)

1.0

Light penetration depth (feet)

(To exceed given value 50% of the time)

65.0

Ammonia:

The ammonia toxicity standards for fresh and marine waters are tabulated in Appendix A.

Dissolved Oxygen:

Not less than 70% saturation or less than 5.0 mg/l. If the natural level of dissolved oxygen is less than 5.0 mg/l, the natural level shall become the standard.

pH:

The pH range shall be 6.5 to 8.6 and be within 0.2 pH units of that which would occur naturally.

Enterococci:

35 per 100 ml (geometric mean indicator density)

104 per 100ml (single sample maximum allowable density)

(n) Embayments - Fagatele Bay and Pala Lagoon

The following standards apply specifically to Fagatele Bay and Pala Lagoon:

Not to Exceed the

Parameter

Given Value

Turbidity (NTU)

Fagatele Bay

Pala Lagoon

 

0.25

0.75

Total phosphorus (µg/l as P)

15.0

Total nitrogen (µg/l as N)

135.0

Chlorophyll a (µg/l)

0.35

Light penetration depth (feet)

(To exceed given value 50% of the time)

130.0

Ammonia:

The ammonia toxicity standards for fresh and marine waters are tabulated in Appendix A.

Dissolved Oxygen:

Not less than 80% saturation or less than 5.5 mg/l. If the natural level of dissolved oxygen is less than 5.5 mg/l, the natural level shall become the standard.

pH:

The pH range shall be 6.5 to 8.6 and be within 0.2 pH units of that which would occur naturally.

Enterococci:

35 per 100 ml (geometric mean indicator density)

104 per 100ml (single sample maximum allowable density)

(o) Open Coastal Waters

The following apply specifically to open coastal waters:

Not to Exceed the

Parameter

Given Value

Turbidity (NTU)

0.25

Total phosphorus (µg/l as P)

15.0

Total nitrogen (µg/l as N)

130.0

Chlorophyll a (µg/l)

0.25

Light penetration depth (feet)

(To exceed given value 50% of the time)

130.0

Ammonia:

The ammonia toxicity standards for fresh and marine waters are tabulated in Appendix A.

Dissolved Oxygen:

Not less than 80% saturation or less than 5.5 mg/l. If the natural level of dissolved oxygen is less than 5.5 mg/l, the natural level shall become the standard.

pH:

The pH range shall be 6.5 to 8.6 and be within 0.2 pH units of that which would occur naturally.

Enterococci:

35 per 100 ml (geometric mean indicator density)

124 per 100ml (single sample maximum allowable density)

(p) Ocean Waters

The following apply specifically to ocean waters:

Not to Exceed the

Parameter

Given Value

Turbidity (NTU)

0.20

Total phosphorus (µg/l as P)

11.0

Total nitrogen (µg/l as N)

115.0

Chlorophyll a (µg/l)

0.18

Light penetration depth (feet)

(To exceed given value 50% of the time)

150.0

Ammonia:

The ammonia toxicity standards for fresh and marine waters are tabulated in Appendix A.

Dissolved Oxygen:

Not less than 80% saturation or less than 5.5 mg/l. If the natural level of dissolved oxygen is less than 5.5 mg/l, the natural level shall become the standard.

pH:

The pH range shall be 6.5 to 8.6 and be within 0.2 pH units of that which would occur naturally.

Enterococci:

35 per 100 ml (geometric mean indicator density)

276 per 100ml (single sample maximum allowable density)

(q) Implementation Provisions for Bacterial Characteristics

Public notifications (beach advisories) will be on the basis of single sample exceedences.

Consistent exceedence of an annual geometric mean will trigger a sanitary survey as described in 24.0210(d).

Refer to current edition as amended of "Territory of American Samoa Integrated Water Quality Monitoring And Assessment Report" for use support evaluation methodology including 303d listing.

(r) Biocriteria

The Territory shall preserve, protect, and restore water resources to their most natural condition. The condition of these waterbodies shall be determined from measures of physical, chemical, and biological characteristics of each waterbody type, according to its designated use. As a component of these measures, the biological integrity of the benthic communities living within waters shall be assessed by comparison to reference conditions(s) with similar abiotic and biotic environmental settings that represent the optimal or least impacted condition for that system. Such reference conditions shall be those observed to support the greatest community evenness, diversity, and abundance of aquatic life as is expected to be or has been historically found in natural settings essentially undisturbed or minimally disturbed by human impacts, development, or discharges. This condition shall be determined by consistent sampling and reliable measures of selected indicator communities of flora and/or fauna and may be used in conjunction with other measures of water quality. Waters shall be of a sufficient quality to support a resident biological community as defined by metrics derived based upon reference conditions. These narrative biological criteria shall apply to fresh water, wetlands, estuaries, and coral reefs and other marine conditions based upon their respective reference conditions and metrics.

History:Rule 8-81, eff 16 Jun 81, § 1; Rule 6-05, eff 2005.

Amendments: Update and renumbering.