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GIS Coverages for Water Quality Standards and Assessment

The Bureau of Water Quality Standards and Assessment (BWQSA) is responsible for the development, adoption, and administration of New Jersey's Surface Water Quality Standards and Ground Water Quality Standards. BWQSA is also responsible for conducting and coordinating water quality assessments of all waters of the State, which are reported through the New Jersey Integrated Water Quality Monitoring and Assessment Report (Integrated Report).

These functions require the BWQSA to develop and/or apply a number of Geographic Information System (GIS) coverages that are also available to the public, including those listed below. All of these coverages are available from the Department's GIS digital downloads as individual data layers by using the search and/or drop-down menu, except for the stream classifications and Integrated Reports (see notations provided).

  • 2002 Land Use/Land Cover
  • New Jersey Stream Classifications (including Category One streams)*
  • Ambient Lakes Monitoring Network
  • Ambient Stream Quality Monitoring Sites
  • Ambient Biological Monitoring Network
  • Shellfish Classification
  • Fish Index of Biotic Integrity (FIBI) sampling points
  • Integrated Water Quality Monitoring and Assessment Reports (Integrated Reports),
    including 303(d) Lists of Water Quality Limited Waters**:

*Note: To access the stream classifications coverage, including Category One streams, follow the instructions below.

**Note: To access the Integrated Reports coverages, including the 303(d) Lists, click on a specific year, above, to link to the GIS coverage for that year.

Instructions for Finding Stream Classifications Using iMapNJ DEP

  1. From the DEP home page under "Information Tools" select the i-MapNJ DEP link. (NOTE: You may have to deactivate "pop-up" blockers for this site to work.)
  2. From the Interactive Mapping window, select i-Map NJ DEP and then click the “launch i-MapNJ DEP” button, which will bring up a map of the State with county boundaries.
  3. Since the data layers of interest are only available when you are zoomed in, you must either use the “zoom in” button over a desired area or use the “find location of interest” feature at the upper right part of the screen.
  4. Once you have zoomed, on the left side available data layers will become active (blue text rather than pale grey).
  5. Select on the following boxes to make the data layers available. You may need to scroll down to find the appropriate layer:
    1. Municipalities
    2. Category One waters
    3. Surface Water Quality Standards
    4. Water Bodies
  6. Each data layer selected will be displayed in the legend on the right side. Click on the “active” circle button on the data layers to select the layer to be identified. For this purpose, select the Surface Water Quality Standards layer to display: stream name, stream classification (FW1, FW2-TP, FW2-TM, FW2-NT, SE1, SE2, SE3, or SC) and antidegradation designation (C1) as appropriate. The Category One waters data layer will provide the same information but only if the stream is designated as Category One.
  7. Add “subwatersheds – HUC14” as an active data layer to determine the area upstream of the Category One segment which may be subject to 300 foot buffers.

Instructions for Finding Stream Classifications Using NJ GeoWeb
(Note: NJ GeoWeb will eventually replace iMap NJ DEP)

  1. From the DEP home page under "Information Tools" select GIS Data. (NOTE: You may have to deactivate "pop-up" blockers for this site to work.)
  2. From the Bureau of GIS home page, click on “NJ-GeoWeb” to open the NJ-GeoWeb instructions. The “LAUNCH NJ GeoWeb ” button offers links to three data profiles; general, well drillers, and volunteer monitors.
  3. Select the general "GeoWeb" profile and click on the word "launch", which will bring up a map of the State with county boundaries.
  4. Since the data layers of interest on the map are only available when you are zoomed in, you must either use the “zoom in” button over a desired area or use the “Advanced tools” feature at the top right part of the screen and use “Locate Point Using NJ State Plane Coordinate”.
  5. Select only the following boxes to make the data layers available:
    1. Base Layers: Municipalities
    2. Water: Category One waters, Surface Water Quality Standards and Water Bodies.
  6. Use the “i” tool and click on the stream, and from the "more information" box use the drop down menu to select the “Surface Water Quality Standards” layer.
  7. This will provide the stream name, stream classification (FW1, FW2-TP, FW2-TM, FW2-NT, SE1, SE2, SE3, or SC) and antidegradation designation (C1) as appropriate. The Category One waters data layer will provide the same information but only if the stream is designated as Category One.
  8. Add the "subwatersheds – HUC14” data layer to determine the area upstream of the Category One segment which may be subject to 300 foot buffers.

For more information, please contact the Bureau of Water Quality Standards and Assessment at (609) 777-1753.

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Department of Environmental Protection
P. O. Box 402
Trenton, NJ 08625-0402

Last Modified: August 8, 2013

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