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Benefits of Water Quality Policies: The Chesapeake Bay

Published: January 01, 1997

The purpose of this paper is to estimate the benefits of water quality legislation in the Bay region from 1972, the year the Clean Water Act was promulgated, to 1996.  Nutrients, nitrogen and phosphorous, are the dominant criteria addressed by this case study.  Benefits are assessed from a "with-without" perspective.  That is, 1996 water quality is compared with what it would have been in 1996 without the Clean Water Act and related legislation.  The US EPA Chesapeake Bay Program Watershed and Water Quality Models were used to determine the distribution of nutrient loadings from point and non-point sources and characterize water quality.

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Originator: US EPA/National Cetner for Environmental Economics

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