In this week’s webinar, Rosenstiel School student Abbey Cherish Pennington talks waste-water management in the Boston Harbor during Dr. Neil Hammerschlag’s Marine Conservation class.
The Boston Harbor Project was one of the biggest wastewater management projects in the US, conducted from 1991 to 2000. The relocation of the sewerage outfall pipe from the mouth of Boston Harbor, to 15km offshore in Massachusetts Bay ended over a century of direct wastewater discharges into the harbor. The project led to a reduction in: total nitrogen, total phosphorus, total suspended solids and particulate organic matter by approximately 80-90%. Macroalgae, phytoplankton and submerged aquatic vegetation need a certain level of nitrogen and phosphorus, as they are essential elements for their growth.
This study provides an opportunity to examine ecosystem responses to major reductions in pollutant input, which could be used as an example for other waste-water management schemes, for example in Biscayne Bay, Florida.
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