Nitrate/OWTS Policy Basin Plan Amendment


The San Diego Water Board is responsible for the regulation, protection and administration of water quality. The Water Quality Control Plan for the San Diego Basin (Basin Plan) designates beneficial uses for water bodies in the San Diego Region, and establishes water quality objectives and implementation plans to protect those beneficial uses.

Changes to the Basin Plan require a Basin Plan amendment. All Basin Plan Amendments are subject to a full public participation and hearing process prior to adoption by the San Diego Water Board. Basin Plan Amendments also must be approved by the State Water Resources Control Board (State Water Board), Office of Administrative Law (OAL) and, in many cases, the US Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA).

On April 15, 2015, the San Diego Water Board adopted Resolution No. R9-2015-0008 a Basin Plan Amendment. The Resolution changed water quality objectives for nitrate in groundwater basins that currently have numeric objectives to 45 mg/L as NO3, incorporated the State Water Quality Control Policy for Siting, Designing, Operation, and Maintenance of Onsite Wastewater Treatment Systems, added implementation measures for areas where surface and groundwater are interconnected and made some other non-substantive changes to the Basin Plan.

The State Water Board approved the San Diego Water Board's Nitrate/OWTS Policy Basin Plan amendment on November 17, 2015. The Office of Administrative Law approved the San Diego Water Board's Nitrate/OWTS Policy Basin Plan amendment on May 17, 2016.  Documents related to the approval of this TMDL, including the Final Substitute Environmental Document, are available for review at the San Diego Water Board Office. To request a file review please contact the Regional Board receptionist at (619) 516-1990 or email

  Subscribe to our Email Lists


Quick Links