This paper considers the problem of pollution of water bodies within the Tom’s river basin by waste waters from large industrial and municipal enterprises. An overview is provided for the methodological approaches to assessing the anthropogenic load, including direct impacts on the water body and indirect impacts its catchment area. An analysis is made of the amount and structure of wastewaters entering the Tom’ river and its tributaries from local pollution sources. The level of direct anthropogenic load on water bodies within the river basin was estimated using indicators, such as the waste water dilution ratio and the pollutant load based on its conditional mass (reduced to MPC). It is found that the highest level of anthropogenic load is characteristic for small and very small rivers in which waste waters are often discharged without any treatment whatsoever. It is shown the highest level of anthropogenic level occurs in water bodies on the territory of Kemerovo oblast. Within the Tom’ basin, the largest source of pollution of not only surface but also subsurface waters is located in the southern part of Kuzbass, in the vicinity of Novokuznetsk, in the most densely populated and industrially developed area disturbed by coal mining. The results obtained are confirmed by the fact that every year these rivers are assessed as the dirtiest in the river basin; the concentration of particular pollutants exceeds the MPC several times. The results reported here can be used in developing a special program of remediation of the anthropogenic load on the water bodies in Kemerovo oblast, including from local sources of pollution.Keywords: river basin, direct and indirect anthropogenic load on water bodies, waste water dilution ratio, pollutant load.