Final TMDLs Approved by EPA: Upper Pocomoke River

The Pocomoke River originates in the Great Cypress Swamp located on the border between Delaware and Wicomico and Worcester Counties, Maryland. From its origin, the river flows approximately sixty miles through Maryland until it outlets to the Pocomoke Sound of the Chesapeake Bay.  The specific MD 8-Digit Upper Pocomoke River watershed consists of the most upstream portion (i.e., the headwaters) of the Pocomoke River basin within Maryland.  The outlet of the MD 8-digit Upper Pocomoke River watershed is located just north of the town of Snow Hill, and the watershed extends all the way to the border between Delaware and Maryland within Wicomico and Worcester Counties.  All of the streams within the MD 8-Digit watershed are non-tidal.  The watershed drains approximately 19 stream miles and 95,476 acres.  The largest towns within the MD 8-Digit Upper Pocomoke River watershed are Willards and Pittsville.

The Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE) has identified the waters of the MD 8-Digit Upper Pocomoke River watershed in Maryland’s Integrated Report as impaired by sediments – total suspended solids (TSS) (1996, Adkins Pond - sedimentation - 1998), nutrients – phosphorus (1996, Adkins Pond - 1998), and impacts to biological communities (2002).  All impairment listings are for the non-tidal streams in the watershed, except for the 1998 nutrient and sediment impairment listings for Adkins Pond, a small impoundment within the watershed.  The designated use of the MD 8-digit Upper Pocomoke River mainstem and its tributaries is Use I (Water Contact Recreation and Protection of Aquatic Life).

The TMDL, available below, addresses the 1996 sediments listing, for which a data solicitation was conducted, and all readily available data from the past five years have been considered.  Sediment and phosphorus TMDLs for the Adkins Pond impoundment were approved by the EPA in 2002.  In the 2012 Integrated Report, the listing for impacts to biological communities will include the results of a stressor identification analysis, and a phosphorus TMDL to address the nutrient impairment listing for the watershed was approved by EPA in 2013. 

Total Maximum Daily Load of Sediment in the Upper Pocomoke River Watershed, Wicomico and Worcester Counties, Maryland  

(November 15, 2013)

EPA's Decision Letter EPA's Decision Letter (1,611KB) 
Main Report Upper_Pocomoke_SedTMDL__Final  (2,187KB)
Point Source Technical Memorandum Upper_Pocomoke_SedTMDL_PS_TechMemo_Final (22KB)
Nonpoint Source Technical Memorandum Upper_Pocomoke_SedTMDL_NPS_TechMemo_Final (18KB)
Comment Response Document Upper Pocomoke_SedTMDL_CRD_Final (7KB)

Additional Supporting Information

Biological Stressor Identification Upper Pocomoke River Watershed Report (725KB)

Biological Stressor Identification Methodology (459KB)

Nontidal Sediment TMDL Methodology Report (361KB)

Addendum to the Nontidal Sediment TMDL Methodology Report (23KB)

Contact Information

Please direct questions or comments concerning this project to Maryland's TMDL Program at (410) 537-3818.​