The EPA has decided not to appeal a January ruling that restricted its flexibility in issuing a cleanup plan for Accotink Creek in Fairfax, VA.
The EPA had used water to stand in for sediment when determining a total maximum daily load for the creek, which has been impaired since 1996. But the Virginia Department of Transportation and the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors sued, arguing that it was illegal to use water as a proxy for a pollutant.
The plaintiffs were concerned because the TMDL would have required residents to retrofit properties to capture and reuse all stormwater, which would have been expensive. New buildings were also going to have to retain and reuse all of their stormwater.
In January, a federal judge in Alexandria agreed with the plaintiffs. Agency officials were mulling an appeal. But, according to The Connection newspapers in Alexandria, they decided not to appeal the decision in March.
In January, agency officials told the Bay Journal that they interpreted the ruling as narrow in scope and that it only applied to the Accotink, a highly impervious 52-square-mile watershed that is a tributary of the Potomac River.