Arkansas Thermal Discharges regulations & environmental compliance analysis

Arkansas Thermal Discharges: What you need to know

Governing Law and Regulations

National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit program: Arkansas Regulation (AR Reg.) 6.101 to 6.701

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Temperature standards: AR Reg. 2.502

Dissolved oxygen: AR Reg. 2.505

Regulatory Agencies

Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality (ADEQ) Water Division Permits Branch

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Region 6

See ADDRESSES & CONTACTS for addresses and telephone numbers.

See national section for basic information and federal regulations.

Comparison: State vs. Federal

Rules. Arkansas is authorized by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to regulate water temperatures through the state's National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) water pollution control permits. The state generally follows the federal rules when establishing temperature limits. See the national section THERMAL DISCHARGES for more information on the federal requirements.

Specific water quality standards apply to all surface waters of the state. The standards apply to frequent, persistent, or long-term modification of the water quality and are not applicable to naturally occurring conditions

Administration and enforcement. ADEQ's Permits Branch administers and enforces Arkansas's water quality program and issues NPDES permits, including establishing thermal discharge standards.

State Requirements


AR Reg. 2.502

Heat is considered to be a pollutant and cannot be added to any state waters in excess of the amount that will elevate the natural temperature, outside the mixing zone, by more than 5 degrees Fahrenheit (°F) (2.8 degrees Centigrade (°C)). The calculation is based on the monthly average of the maximum daily temperatures measured at ...

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