Water Quality Improvement Project
Deschutes River Watershed Area:
Deschutes River, Percival Creek, and Budd Inlet Tributaries


Living in the Deschutes watershed offers an abundance of beauty and water-related activities. Unfortunately, the quality of water in some areas of the Deschutes River and other creeks, are below state standards. In order to return the river to a healthy condition Ecology, along with local government and other interested groups, is engaging in a coordinated process called a total maximum daily load, or TMDL project.

Water quality issues

The Deschutes River is under pressure from growth, resulting in many small, uncontrolled sources of pollution entering the river. Local city, county, and state government agencies work hard to monitor and protect the quality of our water. Water quality monitoring revealed that levels of pH, dissolved oxygen, temperature, fine sediment, and fecal coliform were not normal, therefore triggering the “TMDL” process. See map of the TMDL project area.

Deschutes River, Washington State.  Photographer Andrew Kolosseus, WA State Department of Ecology.

Status of the project

Ecology, with the help of an advisory group of affected stakeholders, special interest groups, and interested citizens, worked to develop a plan to solve these pollution problems. The Deschutes River, Percival Creek, and Budd Inlet Tributaries Water Quality Improvement Plan (also known as a Total Maximum Daily Load or TMDL) assigns the amount of pollution the waterbodies can receive and still meet water quality standards. Any additional amount needs to be reduced or eliminated to achieve clean water. This plan provides a framework for how the stakeholders will track, monitor, and implement the water cleanup plan. It outlines what is needed, establishes a schedule, and guides corrective actions with adaptive management practices.

The draft plan was available for public comment period April 13 through May 27, 2015. Ecology held two public meetings to provide a broad overview of the project and findings.

Ecology staff finalized the plan, and in December 2015 submitted it to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).


Why this matters

Deschutes River, Washington State.  Photographer unknown.Advisory Committee information

Technical information

Related Information



Last updated December 2016


WRIA: #13 (Deschutes)
County: Thurston

Water-body Names:
Budd Inlet
Percival Creek
Deschutes River

Dissolved Oxygen
Fecal Coliform Bacteria
Fine Sediments

# of TMDLs: ---

Final report submitted to EPA for approval

Contact Info:
Leanne Weiss
Phone: 360-407-0243
Email: Leanne.Weiss@ecy.wa.gov

Southwest Region
Department of Ecology
Water Quality Program
P.O. Box 47775
Olympia, WA 98504-7775