Final TMDLs Approved by EPA: Youghiogheny River

The Youghiogheny River, a tributary of the Monongahela River in Pennsylvania, is located in Garrett County, Maryland.  Fast and free-flowing, traversing mostly mountain terrain, the Youghiogheny River weaves back and forth from Maryland, where it originates, to West Virginia and again into Maryland before flowing to the Youghiogheny Reservoir. From there it moves into Pennsylvania and discharges into the Monongahela, which joins the Allegheny to form the Ohio River.

The Youghiogheny River is approximately 125 miles in length with nearly 75 miles in Pennsylvania, approximately 44 miles in Maryland, and about 6 miles in West Virginia. The watershed of the Youghiogheny River has a drainage area of approximately 285 square miles (excluding Deep Creek Lake) before the river enters the Youghiogheny Reservoir. Approximately 68 square miles (24%) of the watershed is in West Virginia. The Youghiogheny River drainage area is primarily forested, dominated by woodlands and a few farms.

The Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE) has identified the waters of the Youghiogheny River (basin number 05020201) on the State’s 303(d) List submitted to the EPA by MDE as impaired by nutrients (1996), sediments (1996), pH (1996), bacteria (1996), and portions of the basin for impacts to biological communities (2002 and 2004). The designated use of the Youghiogheny River is Use III-P (Nontidal Cold Water and Public Water Supply). The document, available below, establishes a TMDL of sediment in the Youghiogheny River to allow for the attainment of its above-mentioned designated use. The objective of the sediment TMDL established in the document is to ensure that there will be no sediment impacts affecting aquatic health, when aquatic health is evaluated based on Maryland’s biocriteria, thereby establishing a sediment load that supports the Use III-P designation for the Youghiogheny River watershed. The watershed sediment load includes the potential effect for both water clarity and erosional and depositional impacts, thus accounting for all of the sediment impacts that indicate a sediment impairment per the Maryland 303(d) listing methodology.

A Water Quality Analysis (WQA) for eutrophication to address the nutrient listing has been approved by the EPA (2001) resulting in the removal of this listing. A TMDL to address low pH is currently in progress. The listings for bacteria and impacts to biological communities will be addressed separately at a future date. 

Total Maximum Daily Load of Sediment in the Youghiogheny River Watershed, Garrett County, Maryland
(Approved on February 21, 2007)

EPA's Decision Letter EPA's Decision Letter
Main Report TMDL_youghiogheny_sed.pdf (871KB)

Comment Response Document

CRD_youghiogheny_sed.pdf (10KB)

Contact Information

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