Bay Journal

March 1991 - Volume 1 - Number 1

EPA seeks $16.3 million for Bay Program in ‘92

The Environmental Protection Agency has requested $16.3 million for the Chesapeake Bay Program during the 1992 fiscal year which starts Oct. 1.

If approved by Congress, that would be a slight increase over the $16.2 million approved for the current 1991 fiscal year, but a substantial rise over the $12.7 million appropriated in 1990.

The money, administered by EPA's Chesapeake Bay Liaison Office in Annapolis, will allow continued technical and management support for pollution prevention and control activities to protect critical habitats, surface water and ground water.

Nonpoint pollution needs more money, emphasis — GAO

Nonpoint source pollution poses equal or greater health and environmental risks than point source pollution but the EPA¹s plans to tackle the problem appear to be doomed because of underfunding, according to a recent Congressional report.

EPA¹s nonpoint source programs were outspent more than 15-to-1 by point source programs in the 1990 fiscal year, according to the report from the U.S. General Accounting Office, the investigative arm of Congress.

Much of the problem, GAO said, is that laws protecting the nation¹s water quality have historically emphasized control of point source pollution — pollution from industries, sewage plants and other sources which can be monitored at the end of a pipe — over nonpoint sources, such as runoff from farms and city streets.

1991: Taking a new look at an old goal

Four years ago, the Bay states signed what appeared to be a straightforward commitment: Reduce the amount of nutrients entering the Bay by 40 percent.

Do this, it was thought, and the fish, shellfish and underwater grasses that make the Chesapeake the nation's premier estuary would begin returning to their former levels.

Since then, state, federal and local governments have spent millions of dollars to upgrade sewage treatment plants, control runoff from fields and cities, protect wetlands and coastal areas, and to research further the intricacies of the Bay itself.

This year, its time to take a step back and see if the cleanup effort is on target. Or, for that matter, whether what seemed like a straightforward goal in 1987 is still the target to shoot for.

This is the "1991 Re-evaluation."

Report calls for new efforts to curb pollution from recreational boating

The Bay states and the federal government should make a concerted effort to reduce the amount of wastes from recreational boats ‹ particularly human wastes ‹ which enter the Bay and its tributaries, a new report says.

While wastes from recreational boats are not a major Baywide pollution problem, the combined discharges from many boats could have a significant impact in local areas, such as marinas or piers located in small tributaries, according to a report from the Recreational Boat Pollution Workgroup.

The group was formed by the Chesapeake Bay Program Implementation Committee in May 1990 to address an objective "to eliminate pollutant discharges from recreational boats" which was made in the 1987 Chesapeake Bay Agreement.

Panel: Reducing nutrients growing more difficult

The Bay states may fall short of the 40 percent nutrient reduction goal — the centerpiece of the Bay cleanup strategy — unless the states improve and expand existing nonpoint control programs, warns a new report.

The report from the 15-member Nonpoint Source Evaluation Panel found that voluntary programs aimed at controlling agricultural runoff are being adopted at too slow a pace to reach the 40 percent goal. The panel also concluded that the estimates of nutrients controlled by many commonly used techniques were "probably optimistic."

Tagging turtles

It's dinner time at the Virginia Marine Science Museum. On the menu is a something with the look and texture of spinach Jell-O.

It is a tasty mixture of gelatin, carrots, spinach, haddock, cod, and Purina trout chow which is served on a stick in inch-thick wiggly slabs.

Tasty, at least, for the six young loggerhead turtles who are getting the blend.

Bay preservation act survives attempts to weaken it in Va. General Assembly

As the Virginia 1991 General Assembly session drew to a close, lawmakers put the finishing touches on a number of pieces of environmental legislation.

But the General Assembly's most significant Bay-related actions may have stemmed from the bills they killed, rather than those they passed.

Lawmakers killed three different bills aimed at weakening the Chesapeake Bay Preservation Act — a law passed in 1988 to protect environmentally sensitive coastal areas such as wetlands.

First Bay ‘toxics of concern’ list is completed

The first Baywide 'Toxics of Concern' list was recently approved by Bay Program's Implementation Committee, listing 14 substances which either adversely affect the Chesapeake or have a 'reasonable potential' to do so.

The intent of the list is to help managers target these toxic substances for additional research and to strengthen existing or establish new regulatory controls and prevention actions.

The list will be revised by the end of this year and after that it will be updated every two years. As the result of that review process, substances may be either added or removed from the list based on new research.

First Bay ‘toxics of concern’ list is completed

The first Baywide 'Toxics of Concern' list was recently approved by Bay Program's Implementation Committee, listing 14 substances which either adversely affect the Chesapeake or have a 'reasonable potential' to do so.

The intent of the list is to help managers target these toxic substances for additional research and to strengthen existing or establish new regulatory controls and prevention actions.

The list will be revised by the end of this year and after that it will be updated every two years. As the result of that review process, substances may be either added or removed from the list based on new research.

Chesapeake College’s new Agriculture AAS is a two-year degree debuting in Fall 2016.

Features

Wholesale reclamation and wetland seed supplier.
A Documentary Inspired by William W. Warner’s 1976 Exploration of Watermen, Crabs and the Chesapeake Bay.

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