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  Bureau of Environmental Analysis, Restoration and Standards

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The data in this table is a subset of those data used to designate the 600 river miles adopted in the 2020 Category One upgrades. The data has been reformatted for ease of use. Note that this spreadsheet is provided for informational purposes and is not legally binding. To download biological data, visit the Water Quality Portal at: https://www.waterqualitydata.us/. To download all biological data available as GIS coverage, visit NJDEP's Open Data at: https://gisdata-njdep.opendata.arcgis.com/datasets/ambient-biomonitoring-network-amnet-of-new-jersey



The Bureau of Environmental Analysis, Restoration and Standards is responsible for conducting and coordinating environmental stewardship, water quality analysis and restoration, water quality standards development, water quality management planning and other activities designed to protect, maintain and enhance water quality for all waters of the State in accordance with the federal Clean Water Act, New Jersey Water Pollution Control Act, and New Jersey Water Quality Management Planning Act.

BEARS provides the scientific foundation for restoration and protection of New Jersey’s water resources so that all of the state’s rivers, lakes and coastal waters are fishable, swimmable and support healthy ecosystems and so all of the freshwater resources are clean sources of drinking water.

The Continuing Planning Process (CPP) is broadly accomplished throughout the DEP and includes a Statewide implementation strategy to achieve water quality standards and objectives for the management of water quality and wastewater. These regulatory and non-regulatory strategies are identified in the CPP document.

BEARS is responsible for conducting and coordinating environmental stewardship, maintaining clean shorelines, water quality analysis and restoration, and water quality standards programs and activities designed to protect, maintain and enhance water quality for all waters of the State in accordance with the federal Clean Water Act, New Jersey Water Pollution Control Act, and New Jersey Water Quality Planning Act. BEARS develops, promotes and supports community-based environmental stewardship programs like the AmeriCorps New Jersey Watershed Ambassadors Program, Community Water Monitoring, and the Watershed Education and Urban Fishing Program, which are designed to raise public awareness about watershed issues and promote watershed stewardship through hands-on experience.


assesment rotation basin approach

BEARS conducts water quality assessment of all waters of the State, including assessment of data collected by non-departmental entities (e.g., regional and local government agencies and community water monitoring organizations), and determining the causes and sources of water quality impairment. Assessment results are reported every two years in the New Jersey Integrated Water Quality Assessment Report (Integrated Report), which includes the Section 303(d) List of Water Quality Limited Waters (303(d) List). BEARS is also responsible for determining the pollutant reductions needed for restoration of water quality, through the development and implementation of Total Maximum Daily Loads (TMDLs) or Watershed Based Plans (WBPs) to restore water quality. The Beach Monitoring Program ensures coastal water quality is safe for recreational bathing.


Clean Shore

BEARS coordinates a statewide program for managing nonpoint sources (NPS) of pollution and administers the Water Quality Restoration Grants for Nonpoint Source Pollution, which includes the federal Clean Water Act Section 319(h) Nonpoint Source Pollution Control and Section 604(b)
Pass-Through Grants
. The Clean Shores Program preserves and enhances New Jersey's coastal environments.


Surface WaterQuality Standards

BEARS is responsible for overseeing the development of both New Jersey’s Surface Water Quality Standards and Ground Water Quality Standards which establish the designated uses and criteria necessary to meet New Jersey's water quality goals.


Water Quality Management Planning (WQMP) Program

BEARS also performs comprehensive planning to develop wastewater management plans and sewer service area amendments. The Water Quality Management Planning (WQMP) Program, which is administered in accordance with the New Jersey Water Quality Planning Act and Sections 201 and 303(e) of the federal Clean Water Act, provides another set of the tools for setting and achieving statewide and regional water quality goals through the planning and review process established under the Water Quality Management Planning rule, N.J.A.C. 7:15


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For more information, please contact Kimberly Cenno, Bureau Chief,
Bureau of Environmental Analysis, Restoration and Standards at (609) 633-1441.

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Last Updated: June 5, 2020