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An Introduction to Sedimentsheds_Sediment and its Relationship to Chesapeake Bay Water Clarity 2002

Published: July 01, 2002

Sedimentsheds is a new concept, and is defined as the area that contributes the sediment which directly influen ces water clarity in near-shore Submerged Aquatic Vegetation (SAV) grow zones.  The twenty-six invited participants to the STAC workshop included technical experts in sediment, submerged aquatic vegetation (SAV) and water clarity and policy experts in state programs and total maximum daily load (TMDL) implementation.  Conclusion:  1]Different types of sedimet have different ecosystem effects, and should be regulated accordingly; 2] Silts are beneficial to marshes, though they also play a role in increasing turbidity 3] The smallest clay-sized materials are the most readily suspended and are the ones of most concern for water clarity.  There appears tobe a relationship between nutrient loading and the amount of small material (clays, algae and microscopic remains of organisms) that remain in suspension during the SAV growing season.  SAV recovery and/or restoration require many factors besides decreased suspended sediments.

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