Nutrient Reductions Credited for Resurgence in Bay’s Underwater Grasses: https://www.bayjournal.com/article/nutrient_reductions_credited_for_resurgence_in_bays_underwater_grasses
- In a recent study, it was found that nutrient reductions over the last 30 years are the primary factor that led to the increased growth of underwater grasses in the Chesapeake Bay.
- Seagrass beds are in decline globally, but the Bay is doing better than any other place on the planet with an increase from 38,229 acres in 1984 to 97,400 acres in 2016.
- The study found that there was a 23% decline in nitrogen concentration and an 8% reduction in phosphorus concentration over the last 3 decades.
The USDA updated their Maryland Chesapeake Bay progress report in September 2016. Click the images above to read the report.
Maryland Department of Agriculture 2015 Nutrient Management Program Annual Report: A Groundbreaking Year for the Chesapeake Bay: http://mda.maryland.gov/resource_conservation/counties/NMPAnnualReport%202015FINAL_web.pdf
- Management of waste is much stricter than most municipal waste water policies for humans. By law, farmers cannot release any waste into the environment. *USF&RA
- Farmers and ranchers fence off areas next to wetlands and water sources to reduce erosion and water contamination and they rotate livestock to new pastures. *USF&RA
- The most recent analysis by the EPA Chesapeake Bay Program office shows that Maryland is on target to meet the 2025 Bay restoration goals. In fact, we are ahead of schedule. A look at the agricultural sector shows that Maryland farmers are reducing nitrogen, phosphorus and sediment. *EPA
- Nutrient Management plans are tested and updated every one to three years to stay current with farmland and scientific research. These plans were mandated by the state in 1998, under Governor Paris Glendening. *MDA
- Maryland finished more than 3.5 million pounds reduced ahead of schedule for nitrogen, nearly 147,000 pounds reduced ahead of schedule for phosphorus and nearly 90 million pounds reduced ahead of schedule for sediment which places us on the right trajectory to reach our 2017 and 2025 goals. *MDE
- About 2.71 million tons of sediment reached the Bay during the 2013 water year, which is below the long-term average of 5.2 million tons. Between 1985 and 2013, trends in suspended sediment concentrations have improved at three sites, including the Choptank, Patuxent and Potomac rivers. *USGS
- About 10 million pounds of phosphorus reached the Bay during the 2013 water year, which is below the long-term average of 14.6 million pounds. Between 1985 and 2013, trends in total phosphorus concentrations improved at three sites, including the James, Patuxent and Potomac rivers. *USGS
- About 160 million pounds of nitrogen reached the Bay during the 2013 water year, which is below the long-term average of 212 million pounds. Between 1985 and 2013, trends in total nitrogen concentrations improved at five out of nine sites, including the James, Patuxent, Potomac, Rappahannock and Susquehanna rivers. *USGS
- Last year, Maryland farmers planted more than 475,000 acres of cover crops. It was the largest cover crop planting in Maryland history. *MDA