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Technical Tools Used in the Development of Virginia's Tributary Strategies: A Synthesis of Airshed, Watershed, and Estuary Model Results

Published: September 30, 2000

The overall modeling framework used to assess Virginia's tributary strategies in 1999 is documented. This synthesis report provides an overview of the Chesapeake Bay Program airshed, watershed, and estuary models and other diagnostic tools which were applied to determine tributary allocations for each of the four lower Virginia basins; the Rappahannock, York, Hames, and Easter Shore Virginia. The publication describes the model scenarios developed to test various management options aimed at improving water and bay grasses quality through different levels of nutrient and sediment reductions. Tracer analyses are presented to better understand the hydrologic interactions among tributaries and the mainstem Bay. Watershed and estuarine physical descriptions, flows and nutrient and sediment loadings of the lower Chesapeake Bay system are detailed. As responses to these loadings, modeled measures of water and habitat quality, needed to sustain key living resources, are interpreted and address.

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