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Assessment Database
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What's New in Version 2?

ADB v.2 is organized around “Assessment Units” instead of Waterbody Segments. In version 1 of the ADB, users defined “Waterbodies” of a specific type (ie river, lake) and then created “Segments” within these waterbodies to which they assigned assessment information. A unique identifier was created by concatenating Waterbody ID and Segment ID with an underscore. In the new system, the “waterbody” level has been removed and users can assign unique identifiers directly to their AUs. There are no required conventions for setting up unique ID’s for the AUs. ID’s can be up to 50 characters.

New Features in Version 2.3.1

The ADB v2.3.1 software release provides an updated Reports Module. There are no database changes in this release. Some of the new and updated reports are listed below.

State Level Reports.

Assessment Unit Summary List.This report has general information associated with the assessment unit including, AU Name, Water Type, Water Size, Location Description, Use and associated Attainments, Causes, Sources, and TMDL Status. If you have additional locational information (HUC, county, etc.) for each assessment unit you can select to have the report organized by one of these instead of just alphabetical order.

303(d) List. This report shows all waters on the 303(d) list with their associated causes, TMDL status, uses, and sources.

Delisting. This report contains the assessment unit – cause combinations that have been removed from the 303(d) list since the last reporting cycle and were designated by the ADB user as a delisting.

WQS Attainments. This report contains the assessment unit – cause combinations that have been assigned WQS attainment reason for the recovery of the waterbody. Some of these may also be delistings and will appear in the delistings report as well.

TMDL Status. This report lists all of the impaired AUs with a cause that require a TMDL and any information the user has entered regarding the progress towards submitting a TMDL. Each assessment unit-cause combination without a TMDL or expected to attain date where the cause is a pollutant must have either a TMDL priority or TMDL schedule date.

Cycle Comparison Reports.

Summary Statistics. This report allows you to view the total number of assessment units in the current cycle compared to the previous cycle. You can also compare the current cycle Assessment Unit – Cause Combinations and compare Water Sizes by Category for both the current and previous cycle.

Assessment Unit-Cause Combination Added to List. This report provides a detailed list of those assessment unit-cause combinations added to the 303(d) list since the last reporting cycle.

Changed Use Attainments. This report provides a detailed list of those assessment unit-use combinations where the use attainment has changed since the last reporting cycle.

Changed Category (Assessment Unit). This report provides a detailed list of those assessment units that have changed overall category since the last reporting cycle. You can view the current assessment unit ID and overall category in comparison to the previous cycle assessment unit ID and overall category. This report is the most time consuming to run.

Unaccounted For Waters (disappeared from list). This report provides a detailed list of those assessment unit-cause combinations that were on the 303(d) list in the last reporting cycle but are unaccounted for because a delisting/WQS attainment reason has not been provided.

New Features in Version 2.3

The following new features were developed to accommodate changes in the 2008 Integrated Reporting Guidance and provide new enhancements.

Modified delisting forms and delisting reason list. ADB version 2.3 contains modified delisting forms and delisting reason list to include a designation between WQS attainment and delisting. The updated available delisting and WQS attainments reasons are as follows:


  • Data and/or information lacking to determine water quality status; original basis for listing was incorrect (Category 3)
  • TMDL approved or established by EPA (4A)
  • TMDL Alternative (4B)
  • Not caused by a pollutant (4C)

WQS Attainment:

  • Applicable WQS attained; original basis for listing was incorrect
  • Applicable WQS attained; due to restoration activities
  • Applicable WQS attained; due to change in WQS
  • Applicable WQS attained; according to new assessment method
  • Applicable WQS attained; threatened water no longer threatened
  • Applicable WQS attained; reason for recovery unspecified

Mercury Reduction Strategy. The ADB v.2.3 has added the description and URL fields to track mercury reduction strategy information.

Expanded data fields for 4B. The data field for category 4B (TMDL alternative) has been expanded.

User Defined Category. The ADB v.2.3 includes an added field for states to designate a user defined category at the use and cause levels. In the case of the user defined cause category this will be the place for a state to designate a 5M water.

Assessment Unit Use Attainment Flags. The ADB v.2.3 now offers flags at the assessment unit use attainment, and cause levels to track if a cause of impairment was added by EPA.

Cycle Tracking Update. A field has been added to track the cycle of consent decree if a AU-cause combination was part of a consent decree.

Observed Effects and Source Levels. A comment field was added at the observed effects and source levels.

Data Exports. The data export function has been improved by adding TMDL information and other additional fields.

Water Types. ADB v2.3 has added the following water types: “Great Lakes Connecting Channel”, “Ditch and Canal”, and “Inland Lake Shoreline”

New Assessment Type. "Other" has been added as a new assessment type.

New Features in Version 2.2

The following new features were developed to accommodate changes in the 2006 Integrated Reporting Guidance and requests of ADB v.2users. Both organizational changes and data management updates are found in ADB v2.2.

Probability Survey Module. The Probability Survey Module is designed to store water quality assessment information which has been gathered using probability-based assessment methods. The user can store all of the data elements suggested by the 2006 guidance as well as GIS coverages, documents, and other assessment-related information. The probability survey also allows the user to browse, export, summarize and report the information within the module.

Category Determination at the Assessment Unit, Uses and Causes levels. The ADB v.2.2 has been updated to support multiple category determinations per assessment unit in accordance with the 2006 Guidance. A single AU can now have one attainment category, one attainment category per designated use, or one attainment category per use and cause.

Delisting. The ADB v.2.2 allows you to keep track of causes which were previously listed the state’s 303(d) list for a particular cause of impairment, the dates of delisting, and the reason or rationale for delisting.

Atlas Information. The atlas information screen allows a user to independently track the total water size in the state according to each source and/or scale cited.

Trend Analysis. The ADB v.2 includes the ability to track the trend status for each assessment unit.

New Reports. The ADB v.2 now offers an atlas information report, a delisting summary, and a TMDL status update report. Additionally, the AU Summary Report has been updated to provide more flexibility in report creation.

Copy an Assessment Unit. The ADB v.2 allows the user to copy an assessment unit within the cycle and use it as a template to create a new assessment unit.

TMDL Information. Additional fields have been added to aid states in tracking TMDL status and project information.

Cycle Last Assessed. The user can now view the last time an assessment unit was assessed from the main assessment units screen.

Assessment Date. The assessment date field has been moved to the designated use level to allow for the possibility that waters may be assessed for different uses on different dates.

New in Version 2.1

The following new features were developed by implementing changes requested by users of ADB v.2. Many of the changes deal with the user interface and management of data within the ADB, rather than the major organizational changes that made ADB v.2 different from ADB v.1.

Reorganized Assessment Units screen. The new screen is better organized and the buttons have clearer descriptions.

Migrate to New Cycle. States can now migrate data from cycle to cycle so they do not have to re-enter data.

Export from Browse. Users can export what they see in the “Full Browse” screen to a .csv file.

Shell to External Applications. Users have the ability to access other applications from the ADB and to pass the assessment unit ID to this application.

User Category. Users can create their own categories for internal reporting and management purposes. Assessment units will still be placed in one of the five EPA-defined categories when submitted.

Limit Uses by Class. State or jurisdictions that use classes to group designated uses can now associate those classes with assessment units. When assigning uses to the assessment units, you will only be able to select uses associated with the designated class.

TMDLs Associated with Impairments. In version 2.1, TMDLs are associated with individual impairments rather than entire assessment units.

Data Exports. In addition to the category listing export, users can now export the 303(d) list and a list of category 4A and 4B assessment units.

Reports Module. The new Reports Module allows users to create two different kinds of reports: 1) Summary Reports that allow users to create use support summaries, impairment summaries, and use summaries for a selected state, cycle and water type, and 2) Comprehensive Two-page Reports for selected assessment units.

Observed Effects. Now, an Impairment can also be designated as an Observed Effect during the same reporting cycle.


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