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Water Quality Study of Chenoweth Run (June 1996)

The primary focus of data collection by the Kentucky Division of Water KPDES Section in 1995 was on phosphorus concentrations in Chenoweth Run and the source(s) of this phosphorus. Median total phosphorus concentrations in 1995 were found to be 0.04 mg/L above the Jeffersontown wastewater treatment plant (WWTP), 2.5 mg/L in plant effluent, 1.4 mg/L a short distance downstream. Concentrations remained elevated throughout Chenoweth Run to its confluence with Floyds Fork. The phosphorus value commonly recommended by the EPA for flowing streams is 0.1 mg/L. The Jeffersontown wastewater treatment plant had the greatest impact on phosphorus concentrations in Chenoweth Run during low to normal streamflow. During storms, the nonpoint source contribution was much more significant, and concentrations were essentially the same (about 0.3 mg/L) above the plant and below. The most likely source during storm runoff is from fertilizers used on lawns. During normal summertime conditions when algal blooms are prevalent, the primary source of phosphorus was the Jeffersontown WWTP. Dissolved oxygen measurements above the WWTP showed no DO violations. Dissolved oxygen concentrations downstream of the WWTP exhibited supersaturation levels, while those above the facility did not. pH data also indicated significant algal activity below the WWTP. At high summer temperatures and high pH, ammonia becomes toxic to aquatic life even at the relatively low concentrations found in Chenoweth Run. Total Suspended Sediments are high after storm events. Nitrite plus nitrate nitrogen increases significantly below the WWTP. No violations of metal criteria were noted at low flow.In a previous study (MSD, 1991), fecal coliform bacteria violated the primary contact recreation criteria at every sampling station in the county.Biotic Index Values also showed moderate to severe impact throughout the county. Data collected for this study show that during low to moderate flows high phosphorus concentrations are severely impacting both Chenoweth Run and Floyds Fork downstream of Chenoweth Run. The primary source of this phosphorus was the Jeffersontown WWTP. At higher flow conditions, runoff from urban, industrial, and construction areas increases sediment concentrations, contributes to metal criteria violations, and adds nutrients and other chemicals.

[1996 Chenoweth Run Nutrients Part 1]
[1996 Chenoweth Run Nutrients Part 2]
[1996 Chenoweth Run Nutrients Part 3]
[1996 Chenoweth Run Nutrients Part 4]
[1996 Chenoweth Run Nutrients Part 5]

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