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EPA published in the December 30 Federal Register its draft ambient water quality criteria for ammonia aimed at protecting freshwater aquatic life. The EPA draft is an update of criteria last revised in 1999. EPA is soliciting scientific reviews of the draft criteria, after which it is expected to issue final recommended criteria. The Clean Water Act requires states and tribes to adopt water quality criteria that protect designated uses, such as public water supply, aquatic life, recreational use, or industrial uses. States may develop their criteria based on EPA's recommended water quality criteria. Section 304 of the Clean Water Act requires EPA to develop criteria for water quality that accurately reflect the latest scientific knowledge. The primary sources of ammonia in fresh water are agricultural, stemming from accidental releases of fertilizer during transport and from livestock waste; residential and urban, from cleaning products; atmospheric deposition; industrial processes such as the conversion of coal to coke; and sewage treatment plants. EPA’s draft criteria are based on the agency's Guidelines for Deriving Numerical National Water Quality Criteria for the Protection of Aquatic Organisms and their Uses, published in 1985. EPA had published an update of ambient water quality criteria for ammonia pertaining to fresh waters in 1999. Scientific views must be received on or before March 1, 2010.