Agency holds line on water rules
The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality on Wednesday stopped short of loosening water quality standards for waterways known for “primary contact recreation” — activities like kayaking and swimming.
Contact recreation waterways can have up to 126 colonies per 100 milliliters for E. coli, a bacteria linked to human and animal waste, before they are considered polluted.
The commission was considering proposed revisions that would have set a limit of 206 colonies per 100 milliliters before being considered polluted.
The new standards, which commission officials say are more practical and save money when it comes to monitoring for pollution, do loosen standards for other waterways, such as those where fishing and boating — but not swimming — take place.
In another matter, the commission or- dered a company seeking an air permit for a proposed power plant in Corpus Christi to return to a state law judge for further hearings.