About Water Quality

The Oklahoma Conservation Commission’s Water Quality Division is responsible for identifying waters impaired by nonpoint source (NPS) pollution, which is pollution that comes from multiple sources, such as pesticides, fertilizers, sediment, and animal waste. 

Once problems are identified we work to prioritize and implement projects to reduce pollutants and improve water quality. When we can document stream improvements through data collection, EPA approves and recognizes the improved streams as Success Stories on their website.

In 1987, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) officially recognized that NPS pollution was impairing the nation’s waters and preventing them from meeting the “fishable and swimmable” goals of the Clean Water Act. As a result, a new section called 319 Nonpoint Source Management Programs was added to the Clean Water Act. 

Based on this law, each state was required to assess their waters for NPS pollution and develop a management program that would deal with the pollution. Oklahoma designated the Oklahoma Conservation Commission as the state’s technical lead agency for the 319 Program, and so began the Oklahoma Nonpoint Source Management Program. 

Monitoring data can also be visualized and downloaded from the OCC Water Quality Data Application.