The U.S. EPA’s required Nine Key Elements, which are addressed in Indiana’s updated NPS management plan, are listed below. Where these elements are addressed in the plan is also noted.
Key Element No. 1
The state program contains long-term goals, short-term objectives, and strategies to protect surface and ground water.
- The state program includes a vision statement. (Chapter 2 Page 23)
- The state has specific long-term goals that are linked to its vision and are directed towards the expeditious achievement and maintenance of beneficial uses of water. (Chapter 2 Page 24)
- The state has specific short-term, medium-term, and long-term (e.g., 1-10 year) objectives, expressed as activities, that are linked to its goals. (Chapter 2 Pages 25-32)
- The state has identified measures and indicators that will be used to assess the state’s success in achieving its goals and objectives. (Chapter 2 Pages 25-32)
- The state has identified specific, expeditious milestones for its activities. (Chapter 2 Pages 25-32)
- The state has identified implementation steps and the expected effects of those steps on its water resources. (Chapter 2 Pages 25-32; Chapter 4 Pages 45-48; Appendix D)
Key Element No. 2
The state strengthens its working partnerships and linkages with appropriate state, tribal, regional, and local entities (including conservation districts), private sector groups, citizens groups, and federal agencies.
- The state proposes to use a state-wide collaborative team NPS task force advisory group, or other appropriate process, to provide for input and recommendations from representatives of federal, state, tribal, and local agencies, private sector groups, and citizens’ groups regarding NPS program direction, project selection, and other similar aspects of program administration. (Chapter 4 Pages 49-50)
- The team, task force, or advisory group meets regularly and promotes collaborative and inclusive decision-making. (Chapter 4 Pages 49-50)
- The state program specifies procedures to provide for periodic public input into the program. (Chapter 4 Pages 49-51)
- The state effectively incorporates a variety of organizations and interests into its implementation of NPS activities and projects. (Chapter 4 Pages 49-50; Appendix B)
- The state uses its partnerships effectively to avoid the transfer of problems among environmental media. (Chapter 4 Page 53)
Key Element No. 3
The state uses a balanced approach that emphasizes both statewide NPS programs, and on-the-ground management of individual watersheds where waters are impaired and threatened.
- Annual or multi-year work plans contain NPS implementation actions directed at both specific priority watersheds, and activities of a statewide nature. (Chapter 4 Page 51)
- The state tracks both statewide activities and watershed projects. (Chapter 1 Pages 17-21)
- The state has institutionalized its program beyond the annual implementation of 319-funded activities and projects. (Chapter 4 Pages 45-48)
- The state uses an integrated watershed approach for assessment, protection, and remediation that is well integrated with other water or natural resource programs. (Chapter 1 Page 21)
Key Element No. 4
The state program:
- abates known water quality impairments from NPS pollution; and,
- prevents significant threats to water quality from present and future activities.
- Based on the information that IDEM currently has, the state has characterized water quality impairments and threats in streams throughout the state, which are caused or significantly contributed to by nonpoint sources. (Chapter 1 Pages 17-20)
- The state has comprehensively characterized reasonably foreseeable water quality impairments and threats that are likely to be caused by NPS pollution in the future. (Chapter 1 Pages 17-20)
- The state program addresses all significant NPS categories and subcategories. (Chapter 1 Pages 17-20)
- The state program has identified specific programs to abate pollution from categories of nonpoint sources, which cause or substantially contribute to the impairments identified in its assessments. (Chapter 4 Pages 45-48; Appendix B)
- The state has identified specific programs to prevent future water quality impairments and threats that are likely to be caused by NPS pollution. (Chapter 4 Pages 45-48; Appendix B)
Key Element No. 5
The state program identifies waters and their watersheds impaired by NPS pollution, and also identifies important unimpaired waters that are threatened or otherwise at risk. Further, the state establishes a process to progressively address these identified waters by conducting more detailed watershed assessments and developing watershed implementation plans, and then by implementing the plans.
- The state water quality assessments (including those performed under Section 305[b], 319[d], 314, and others), along with analysis of changing land uses within the state, form the basis for the identification of the state’s planned NPS activities and projects. (Chapter 1 Pages 17-20; Chapter 5 Pages 55-64)
- The state activities focus on remediating the identified impairments and threats, and on protecting the identified at-risk waters. (Chapter 3 Page 35)
- The state has provided for public participation in the overall identification of problems to be addressed in the state program, and in the establishment of a process to progressively address these problems. (Chapter 4 Page 53)
- The state revises its identification of waters and revisits its process for progressively addressing these problems periodically (e.g., updated as part of the state’s Integrated Report. (Chapter 6 Page 68)
Key Element No. 6
The state reviews, upgrades, and implements all program components required by Section 319(b) of the Clean Water Act, and establishes flexible, targeted, and iterative approaches to achieve and maintain beneficial uses of water as expeditiously as practicable. The state programs include:
- A mix of water quality-based and/or technology-based programs designed to achieve and maintain beneficial uses of water; and,
- A mix of regulatory, non-regulatory, financial, and technical assistance, as needed, to achieve and maintain beneficial uses of water as expeditiously as practicable.
The state includes in its program and implements the following eight items:
- Identification of the measurements to be used to control nonpoint sources of pollution, focusing on those measures that will be most effective to address the specific types of NPS pollution prevalent within the state. These measures may be individually identified or presented in manuals or compendiums, provided they are specific and are related to the category or subcategory of nonpoint sources. They may also be identified as part of a watershed approach towards achieving water quality standards, whether locally, within a watershed, or statewide. (Chapter 2 Pages 25-32; Appendix A)
- Identification of programs to achieve implementation of the measures. (Chapter 4 Pages 45-50; Appendix B)
- Processes used to coordinate and, where appropriate, integrate various programs used to implement NPS controls in the state. (Chapter 4 Pages 45-48)
- A schedule with goals, objectives, and annual milestones for program implementation; legal authorities to implement the program; available resources; and institutional relationships. (Chapter 2 Pages 25-32)
- Sources of funding from federal (other than 319), state, local, and private sources. (Appendix C)
- Identification of federal programs and projects that the state will review for their effects on water quality and their consistency with the state program. (Chapter 5 Pages 49-50; Appendix D)
- Monitoring and other evaluation programs to help determine short term and long-term program effectiveness. (Chapter 5 Pages 55-64; Appendix D)
- The state program also incorporates or cross-references existing baseline requirements established by other applicable federal or state laws to the extent that they are relevant. (Chapter 4 Pages 49-50; Appendix B)
Key Element No. 7
The state identifies federal lands and activities, which are not managed consistently with state NPS program objectives. Where appropriate, the state seeks U.S. EPA assistance to help resolve issues.
- The state reviews federal financial assistance programs, development projects, and other activities that may result in NPS pollution for consistency with the state program. (Chapter 4 Page 50; Appendices B and C)
- The state works with federal agencies to resolve potential inconsistencies between federal programs and activities and the state programs. (Chapter 4 Page 50)
- Where the state cannot resolve federal consistency issues to its satisfaction, it requests U.S. EPA assistance to help resolve the issues. (Chapter 4 Page 50)
- The state coordinates with federal agencies to promote consistent activities and programs, and to develop and implement joint or complementary activities and programs. (Chapter 4 Page 50)
Key Element No. 8
The state manages and implements its NPS program efficiently and effectively, including necessary financial management.
- The state’s plan for watershed projects and statewide activities are well designed, with sufficient detail to assure effective implementation. (Chapter 4 Page 45-51)
- The state’s watershed projects focus on the critical areas and critical sources within those areas that are contributing to NPS problems. (Chapter 4 Page 51)
- The state implements its activities and projects, including all tasks and outputs, in a timely manner. (Chapter 4 Page 51)
- The state has established systems to assure that the state meets its reporting obligations. (Chapter 6 Pages 67-69)
- The state utilizes the Grants Tracking and Reporting System effectively. (Chapter 4 Page 52)
- The state has developed and uses a fiscal accounting system capable of tracking expenditures of both 319 funds and nonfederal match. (Chapter 4 Page 52)
- The NPS projects include appropriate monitoring and/or environmental indicators to gauge effectiveness. (Chapter 5 Pages 58-62)
Key Element No. 9
The state periodically reviews and evaluates its NPS program using environmental and functional measures of success, and revises its NPS assessment and its management program at least every 5 years.
- The state has and uses a process to periodically assess both improvements in water quality and new impairments or threats. (Chapter 6 Page 69)
- The state uses a feedback loop, based on monitoring and other evaluative information, to assess the effectiveness of the program in meeting its goals and objectives, and revises its activities and tailors its annual work plans, as appropriate, in light of its review. (Chapter 6 Page 68)
- Using its feedback loop, the state periodically reviews and assesses the goals and objectives of the NPS Management Program, and revises the program, as appropriate, in light of its review. (Chapter 6 Page 68)
- The state’s annual report successfully portrays the state’s progress in meeting milestones, implementing Best Management Practices (BMPs), and achieving water quality goals. (Chapter 6 Page 69)
Note: Throughout this plan, "the state" refers to IDEM, unless otherwise described. IDEM has certain mandates and charges related to the CWA and cannot presume to speak for other agencies or organizations and their NPS goals and objectives. Many partners implement NPS projects in compliance with the CWA and applicable state laws, or voluntarily implement programs and initiatives that complement IDEM NPS program activities. For the future, IDEM will strive to coordinate these diverse approaches to more effectively address statewide NPS issues.