Chesapeake Bay Program Releases 2015 Watershed Model Estimates

by Evan Isaacson | April 19, 2016

Yesterday, the Chesapeake Bay Program released its latest estimate of nutrient and sediment pollution in the Bay watershed. The annual model run of the program's Watershed Model shows that the estimated nitrogen, phosphorus, and sediment loads decreased by three percent, three percent, and four percent, respectively, compared to 2014 levels. These are important improvements, but much work lies ahead to improve water quality in the Bay and boost the fisheries, wildlife, and recreational activities it supports.

The estimated decrease in nitrogen loads of nearly 7 million pounds brings the Chesapeake Bay a bit closer to the 2017 interim target under the restoration plan known as the Chesapeake Bay Total Maximum Daily Load (Bay TMDL). However, the watershed as a whole – including the six Bay states of Delaware, Maryland, New York, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and West Virginia, plus the District of Columbia – remains significantly off track.

The latest annual data release provides both good news, as well as some more caveats and concerns. Starting with the more positive news, this is the first time that all seven jurisdictions have reported an annual decrease in nitrogen loads over prior-year levels. These decreases range from very slight in Delaware as well as in Virginia on a percentage basis, to substantial reductions in Pennsylvania (on an absolute basis) and the District of Columbia (percentage basis). Not every simulated reduction in the program's model is the result of real pollution reductions, however. A sizable ...

EPA's New NO2 Rule: A Tale of OMB Interference

by Rena Steinzor | January 29, 2010
The EPA issued a new rule recently on nitrogen dioxide (NO2) -- but not before it was weakened by OMB. The consequences for the public health are real. The possibility of OMB interference in the rule was first raised by Matt Madia of OMB Watch. He noted that EPA's draft final rule -- sent to OIRA for review on December 18 -- required all metropolitan areas with a population of 350,000 people or more to install a monitoring station for ...

Farm Bill 2018: Down Payment on an Effective Conservation Title

Ristino | Jan 17, 2018 | Environmental Policy

A Final 2017 Dose of Op-Eds

Freeman | Dec 28, 2017 | Regulatory Policy

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