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US EPA Region IV USDW Yield Criteria

The below reproduced May 21, 1985 "Yield Criteria Used to Define an Aquifer as an Underground Source of Drinking Water" replaced a February 29, 1984 document entitled "Region IV Policy on Aquifer Yield Sufficient to Supply a Public Water Supply (PWS) in Region IV".  The earlier document "...recommended that EPA Region IV use a yield range of 1.7-2.6 gpm as the basis for decision making with regards to U.S.D.W. determinations."  Both of the Region IV USDW yield criteria documents have been distributed to members of the regulated community.  As far as can be determined through FOIA requests, no other EPA region nor EPA headquarters has ever created a USDW yield criteria guidance document.

Recently Region IV has adopted a one (1) gallon per minute (gpm) USDW yield standard, citing a June 4, 1993 EPA headquarters memorandum dealing with nuclear wastes.  In a May 7, 1998 letter, EPA headquarters indicated that the June 4, 1993 memorandum was "...an internal Agency communication" and that headquarters "...has not made any statement that attempts to override established policy guidance set by the regions with regard to this issue."  Region IV has not issued a yield criteria policy guidance newer than the May 21, 1985 document.

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10-08-00
Last 10-20-10