Rule 57 Water Quality Values

Agency: Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy

Rule 57 Water Quality Values

Rule 323.1057 (Toxic Substances; “Rule 57”) of the Part 4 Water Quality Standards gives procedures for calculating water quality values to protect humans, wildlife, and aquatic life.  These values apply to all surface waters in Michigan unless site-specific values have been derived.  The following are links to state-wide and site-specific R57 water quality values that have been derived for the state of Michigan.  Due to the complexity of the equation used to derive aquatic life values for ammonia, a link is provided to tables showing what the ammonia aquatic life values would be at different temperatures and pHs.  

I.  State-wide Rule 57 Water Quality Values

General information

The following are instructions for Interpreting the Rule 57 Water Quality Values Spreadsheet:

Using Rule 57, the following values are determined:

  • Human Noncancer Value (HNV):  “drink” and “non-drink”
  • Human Cancer Value (HCV):  “drink” and “non-drink”
  • Wildlife Value (WV):   (calculated only for Bioaccumulative Chemicals of Concern)
  • Final Chronic Value (FCV)
  • Aquatic Maximum Value (AMV)
  • Final Acute Value (FAV)

The above terms and their uses are defined in the Part 4 Water Quality Standards.  The use of these values to assess point source discharges and venting groundwater is described in the Part 8 Water Quality-Based Effluent Limits for Toxic Substances.  Within the Rule 57 Water Quality Values spreadsheet, the identification of a value as “drink” or “non-drink” refers to whether or not a surface water body is designated and protected as a source for a public drinking water supply (See R323.1100 – Designated uses, of the Water Quality Standards).

Each chemical is identified by a Chemical Abstract Service number (CAS#) and each Rule 57 water quality value has a Tier status associated with it (Tier 1 or Tier 2) and the year the value was verified.  Tier 1 values are calculated using an optimal set of toxicological data while Tier 2 values are calculated using a lesser amount of data (see R323.1057 for further description of tier designation).  The verification date refers to the year the water quality value was approved for entry into the spreadsheet.

If a substance is not listed in the spreadsheet or if a value is identified with an “ID” (insufficient data) or “NLS” (no literature search), then final values have not been derived.  Due to limited resources, values will only be derived in response to requests made by department staff.  Water quality values for substances on the “Routine Rule 57 Value Update List” are updated every five years.  These substances were selected for routine updates because they are frequently encountered during the water quality-based permitting process.  Rule 57 water quality values for other substances are normally updated at the request of Water Resources Division staff or when the supervisor of the Water Toxics Unit becomes aware of additional studies that may influence the magnitude of the water quality values.  The Rule 57 Water Quality Values Spreadsheet will be updated by the supervisor of the Water Toxics Unit as necessary to include new or revised values.  All changes to the spreadsheet must be approved by the manager of the Surface Water Assessment Section.

Download Rule 57 Water Quality Values spreadsheet

Download Rule 57 Water Quality Values spreadsheet (ADA screen reader friendly)

Download Routine Rule 57 Value Update List

Ammonia

The toxicity of ammonia to aquatic life is pH- and temperature-dependent and therefore, the Rule 57 aquatic life values are equation-based. Equations for calculating the aquatic life values for total ammonia are provided below the Rule 57 table. Due to the complexity of these equations, the following tables are provided to facilitate the determination of aquatic life values at various pHs (6.5-9) and temperatures (0-30°C).

Download Ammonia Aquatic Life Value Tables

II.  Site-specific R57 Water Quality Values

Rule 323.1057(2)(r) of the Part 4 Water Quality Standards gives procedures for deriving site-specific aquatic life values that reflect local environmental conditions.  The following documents contain the site-specific aquatic life water quality values that have been derived for copper for select streams in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, and supplemental information used in deriving criteria.    

Site-Specific Aquatic Life Values for Total Copper for Select Water Bodies in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan

Development of Site-Specific Aquatic Life Values for Total Copper for Water Bodies in the Upper Peninsula Waters-Supplemental Information

Development of a Copper Criteria Adjustment Procedure for Michigan’s Upper Peninsula Waters- Supplemental Information

 

Information Contact:  Dennis Bush, 517-284-5522, or bushd6@michigan.gov