Water quality is a term used to describe the chemical, physical, and biological characteristics of water. To determine water quality, scientists first measure and analyze characteristics of the water such as temperature, dissolved mineral content, and number of bacteria. Selected characteristics are then compared to numeric standards and guidelines to decide if the water is suitable for a particular use. Water quality standards consistent with the Clean Water Act help to protect and restore the quality of the Nation's waters.
Urban and industrial development, farming, mining, combustion of fossil fuels, stream-channel alteration, animal-feeding operations, military training sites, and other human activities can change the quality of natural waters. Also, chemicals such as pharmaceutical drugs, dry-cleaning solvents, and gasoline have been found in streams and ground water. When properly enforced, standards can help to indentify these water quality problems.
Annual Report of APEX Modeling Activity at Fort Hood, Texas
This report by Jimmy Williams and Susan Wang of the BREC provides results on the efforts to model BMP effectiveness in the Shoal Creek watershed.
Evaluating Land Management Practices Using Multi-year Stormwater Data (in press)
This study by BREC used stormwater runoff data and associated sediment loads from the Shoal Creek watershed to evaluate the effectiveness of two BMPs implemented at Ft. Hood: Maneuver Access Structures (MAS), or gully plugs, and Mechanical Treatment (MT), or deep soil ripping on the contour.