By Scott Levine Herald Associate Editor
The Clinton Herald
---- — CLINTON — The Environmental Protection Agency recently approved Iowa’s list of impaired waterways.
The Wapsipincion River and Mississippi River were mentioned in the list.
The Mississippi River extending from south of Camanche to just north of Clinton received a new listing on the report. The area of the river was cited for cadmium concentrations above Iowa criterion.
The listing also included a continuation of aluminum concentrations higher than EPA-approved limits for that part of the river.
Elements such as cadmium and aluminum are used in industries along the Mississippi River.
Elevated levels of cadmium and aluminum in waterways can contaminate surrounding land.
For the Wapsi River, Iowa previously listed the river as being impaired for biological integrity.
Freshwater mussel monitoring data from 2012 indicates this river is attaining the requirements for biological integrity. The EPA approved the delisting of the river for biological integrity.
The EPA approved the removal of 73 water bodies from the list and added 78 water bodies.
The EPA’s decision brought the total number of impaired waters on the state’s list to 479.
A water body is placed on the list when monitoring finds that pollutant levels prevent the lake, river or stream from attaining its beneficial uses.
A water body can be removed from the list if it meets its beneficial uses or if a pollution reduction plan for a water body is approved by the EPA.
Beneficial uses in Iowa include human recreation, water supply and maintaining healthy aquatic life.