Public Utilities District
University of Nevada Cooperative Extension
Water Quality Program Website
Water Quality Control Plan October 3, 2008
WQCP Tribal Resolution
Approval Letter from EPA - Page 1
Approval Letter from EPA - Page 2
Training May 13-14, 2009
Point and non-point sources of pollution are issues that the PLPT face every day. Tertiary treated effluent from the Truckee Meadows Water Reclamation Facility, urban storm runoff, agricultural return flows, septic tanks, mining activities (present and historic) all will impact surface waters on the Lower Truckee River and Pyramid Lake. Water pollution compounded by upstream diversions and subsequent low flows has affected the recovery efforts of two Pyramid Lake fish species (Tribal Cultural Resources) important to the Tribe's culture and traditional way of life. The Lahontan Cutthroat Trout (LCT) and Cui-ui (lake sucker) are listed as threatened and endangered, respectively, by the US Fish and Wildlife Service. Establishing Water Quality Standards and long term Bioassessment and WQ monitoring will help assure that Tribal surface waters are protected from further negative impact.
The Pyramid Lake water quality monitoring program began in 1981, conducted within the Resource Department of the Pyramid Lake Fisheries (PLF). The program expanded in 1998 to include streams and sites along the lower Truckee River conducted by the Environmental Department (PLPT). Water samples are collected to be analyzed for dissolved reactive phosphorus, total phosphorus, Nitrates + Nitrites, and Total Ammonia using protocols outlined in the "Standard Methods for Examination of Water and Wastewater." A water quality laboratory was completed in the spring of 2002, located next to the PLF administration building in Sutcliffe, Nevada, to facilitate testing and analysis of all samples gathered within the exterior boundaries of the reservation.
The longterm goals of the Tribe are for the restoration of the river habitat to support the fisheries and maintain healthy populations on all trophic levels. Restoration of the fisheries means restoration of the key cultural resource that the Cui-ui Ticutta (Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe) uses to indentify itself, now, historically, and forever.
Water Quality Standards
On January 30, 2007, the Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe received Treatment As State Status pursuant to Sections 303 & 401 of the Federal Clean Water Act by the United States Environmental Protection Agency for Program Authority to conduct Water Quality Standards (WQS) and 401 Certification within the exterior boundaries of the Pyramid Lake Paiute Indian Reservation (PLIR).
On May 24, 2001, the PLPT adopted a Water Quality Control Plan (WQCP). The WQCP addresses issues such as beneficial uses, antidegradation, water quality criteria, scientific justification, and implementation plans in accordance with the Tribe’s Water Quality Ordinance. For the purposes of water pollution control, the PLPT maintains jurisdiction over all waters that flow into and exists within the PLIR.
The WQCP was submitted to USEPA on July 18, 2001 for review. Comments and recommendations on the WQCP were received from USEPA from March 2005 to 2007. With the help of qualified consultants, revisions to the 2001 WQCP has been prepared by the Lead Agency over the past two years based on comments and recommendations by USEPA. The Tribe’s WQCP was approved by the Tribal Council on September 19, 2008, then submitted to Wayne Nastri, Regional Administrator EPA Region IX on October 3, 2008 for approval. The Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe received final approval on the WQCP on December 19, 2008. The Water Quality Control Plan includes narrative and numeric WQS for Pyramid Lake, the lower Truckee River, and all surface waters within the Pyramid Lake Paiute Indian Reservation.
The PLPT would like to thank all of those who were involved in the development of the WQCP since we began in 1989. The Tribe would also like to thank the public who provided comments during the 'public comment' periods. The Tribe believes that this WQCP will serve to protect, preserve and enhance the Biological, Chemical, and Physical integrity of surface waters within the PLIR.
Technical questions regarding the WQCP should be directed to:
Kameron Morgan, Water Quality Manager
(775) 574-0101 x13
Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe
P.O. Box 256, Nixon, Nevada 89424