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Released on June 8, 2020

DEQ released the Draft 2020 305(b)/303(d) Water Quality Assessment Integrated Report (Integrated Report) on June 8, 2020. The 2020 Integrated Report is a summary of the water quality conditions in Virginia from Jan. 1, 2013, through Dec. 31, 2018.

This biennial report satisfies the requirements of the U.S. Clean Water Act sections 305(b) and 303(d) and the Virginia Water Quality Monitoring, Information and Restoration Act. The goals of Virginia's water quality assessment program are to determine whether waters meet water quality standards, and to establish a schedule to restore waters with impaired water quality.

Water quality standards designate uses for waters. There are six designated uses for surface waters in Virginia:

  • aquatic life
  • fish consumption
  • public water supplies (where applicable)
  • recreation (swimming)
  • shellfishing
  • wildlife

Additionally, several subcategories of aquatic life use have been adopted for the Chesapeake Bay and its tidal tributaries. The standards define the water quality needed to support each of these uses. If a water body contains more contamination than allowed by water quality standards, it will not support one or more of its designated uses. Such waters have "impaired" water quality. In most cases, a cleanup plan (called a "total maximum daily load") must be developed and implemented to restore impaired waters.

Findings in this report will be presented via webinar on June 24, 2020 at 2:00 – 3:30 pm EDT. Interested persons can register at

The report is available for public review and comment. Comments or questions about the report can be submitted via U.S. mail postmarked on or before July 9, 2020 to:

Sandra Mueller
Virginia Department of Environmental Quality
Office of Water Monitoring and Assessment
P.O. Box 1105
Richmond, VA 23218-1105
Or via email attachment to (please include your name, mailing address, telephone number and email address)

A combined response to comments will be prepared after the public comment period expires and made available on this website with the final report.

The entire Draft 2020 305(b)/303(d) Water Quality Assessment Integrated Report is a 43.7 MB ZIP file available for download or you may scroll down to view and download the smaller individual components of the report.

All chapters of the report are Microsoft Word files. The appendices and supplemental files are PDF documents except for the Stations table which is an Excel worksheet. Please visit DEQ’s help page if you are unable to view these files.

Table of Contents

List of Tables and Figures


Executive Summary

Chapter 1: Introduction

Chapter 2: State Background Information

Chapter 3: Surface Water Monitoring Programs

Chapter 4: Surface Water Quality Assessment
        Chapter 4.1 Assessment Methodology
        Chapter 4.2 Statewide Water Quality Assessment Summary
        Chapter 4.3 Individual River Basin Assessment Results
        Chapter 4.4 Freshwater Probabilistic Monitoring Results
        Chapter 4.5 Estuarine Probabilistic Monitoring Results
        Chapter 4.6 Chesapeake Bay Assessment Results

Chapter 5: Nonpoint Source Assessment

Chapter 6: Groundwater Programs Assessment

Chapter 7: Water Quality Programs
        Chapter 7.1 Water Pollution Control Programs (VPDES and TMDLs)
        Chapter 7.2 303(d) Program Vision
        Chapter 7.3 Pollution Prevention Programs
        Chapter 7.4 Cost/Benefit Associated with Construction Assistance Program
        Chapter 7.5 Public Health/Aquatic Life Concerns
        Chapter 7.6 Coastal Resources Management Program Initiatives
        Chapter 7.7 Chesapeake Bay Program Initiatives
        Chapter 7.8 Wetlands Program Initiatives
        Chapter 7.9 Regional Water Quality Initiatives

Appendix 1 Integrated List of All Waters in Virginia
        1a List of Category 5 Impaired Waters (303(d) List)
        1b Supplemental List of Category 5 Waters Newly Impaired in 2020 (303(d) List)
        1c List of Category 4A Impaired Waters
        1d List of Category 4C Impaired Waters
Appendix 2 Water Quality Based Limited Sources - Category 4B and 5E Facilities
        2a Category 4B and 5E Facilities Identified for Delisting since the 2018 Report
Appendix 3 Waters Identified for Delisting since the 2018 Report
Appendix 4 Waters Delisted since the 2018 Report Due to Removal of Designated Use
Appendix 5 Fact Sheets for Impaired (Category 4 or 5) Waters (all basins)
        Chesapeake Bay, Atlantic Ocean and Small Coastal Basin Fact Sheets
        Chowan River and Dismal Swamp Basin Fact Sheets
        James River Basin Fact Sheets
        New River Basin Fact Sheets
        Potomac and Shenandoah Rivers Basin Fact Sheets
        Rappahannock River Basin Fact Sheets
        Roanoke and Yadkin Rivers Basin Fact Sheets
        Tennessee and Big Sandy Rivers Basin Fact Sheets
        York River Basin Fact Sheets
Appendix 6 Clean Water Act References
Appendix 7 List of Significant Lakes
Appendix 8 Assessment Monitoring Stations Key and List (Excel file)

STATEWIDE, BASIN and CHESAPEAKE BAY MAPS - Electronic versions of the assessment maps are available for download/viewing. Each map is a PDF between 1 MB and 15 MB formatted to fit on an 11x17 page except for the Chesapeake Bay maps which are 8.5x11. For more detailed information on impaired waters identified on these maps, please use the Virginia Environmental Geographic Information Systems (VEGIS) application.

DEQ Regional Offices
Virginia's 6th Order Watersheds
Assessment Regions per 6th Order Watershed
Watersheds with Assessed Use(s) 2002-2020
Virginia's Section 303(d) Waters
Distribution of Impaired Waters
Waters Impaired for Fish Consumption
Shellfishing Designated Use Support Status
Bacteria Impairments
Dissolved Oxygen Impairments
Benthic Impairments
TMDL Completion Status
Water Quality Restoration Progress

Chesapeake Bay/Atlantic Ocean and Small Coastal Basin
Chowan River and Dismal Swamp Basin
Lower James River Basin
Middle James River Basin
Upper James River Basin
New River Basin
Potomac River Basin
Rappahannock River Basin
Roanoke and Yadkin Rivers Basin
Shenandoah River Basin
Tennessee and Big Sandy Rivers Basin
York River Basin

Summary of All Impairment Causes in Virginia's Bay Waters
Shallow Water-Submerged Aquatic Vegetation Assessment
Open Water Dissolved Oxygen Criteria Assessment
Deep Water and Deep Channel D.O. Assessment
Benthic Index of Biological Integrity Assessment
James River Chlorophyll a Criteria Assessment
Short-Duration Criteria Assessment using Continuous Monitoring Data

Attention GIS users:
The GIS data used in the production of the Integrated Report is under review for potential updates and corrections during the draft period but will be made available for download from this website along with the Final EPA approved Integrated Report. For more information please contact Cleo Baker.

Interactive Mapping:
Virginia Environmental Geographic Information Systems (VEGIS) - The impaired waters identified in this report can be viewed using DEQ's online GIS application which allows users to zoom to an area of interest and retrieve assessment information for specific waters. Appendix 5 can be used in conjunction with VEGIS to search for details on impaired waters.

Additional Information:
To obtain reports from previous assessment cycles, please contact Cleo Baker or Amanda Shaver.

The Final 2020 305(b)/303(d) Water Quality Assessment Guidance Manual, effective Sept. 5, 2019, is also available.

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Virginia Department of
Environmental Quality
P.O. Box 1105
Richmond, VA 23218
(804) 698-4000

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