The Clean Water Act (CWA) has as one
of its primary goals the maintenance and
restoration of biological integrity. This
concept of biological integrity refers to
the natural assemblage of indigenous
organisms that inhabit a particular area
that has not been affected by human
activities (Karr et al. 1986). The
measurable definition of biological
integrity is the reference condition (Barbour et al. 1995, 1999), which is characterized
using data from minimally-disturbed sites within a region