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An Introduction to Sedimentsheds: Sediment and Its Relationship to Chesapeake Bay Water Clarity

Doubletree Hotel,
Annapolis, Maryland
January 30-31, 2007



A “sedimentshed” is a concept used to determine sediment sources affecting the water clarity of near-shore submerged aquatic vegetation (SAV) grow zones of the Chesapeake Bay. Decreases in water clarity due to massive sediment input from the surrounding watershed and sediment resuspension has had a direct impact on the health of SAV beds, and in turn on the health of aquatic life. In 2006, the Chesapeake Bay Program’s Sediment Workgroup began developing an introductory report on “sedimentsheds” (see Workshop Briefing Materials and Products to access the report) in hopes that identifying both the spatial location and categorical components of sediment sources would ensure the use of efficient and effective management strategies for attaining water clarity goals.

The STAC funded workshop, held in January 2007, provided a forum for the Sediment Workgroup to share a draft of the Sedimentshed Report with watershed-wide expertise for review and comments. The group was also able to collect invaluable insight on sediment, and its impacts on water clarity and SAV health. One of the most surprising conclusions from the workshop was the importance of understanding the effects of different sediment types in different ecosystems. For example, while previously perceived as damaging, sand plays an essential role in maintaining healthy SAV beds; reducing sand sources may cause more harm than good.

Additional information, including the workshop presentations, materials, and the workshop report, can be found below.







Workshop Participants


Greg Allen, EPA CBPO
Rich Batiuk, EPA CBPO
Peter Bergstrom, NOAA
Sally Bradley, Chesapeake Research Consortium-CBPO
Carl Cerco, US Army Corps of Engineers
Keely Clifford, EPA CBPO
Lee Currey, Maryland Department of the Environment
Rich Eskin, Maryland Department of the Environment
Melissa Fagan, Chesapeake Research Consortium
Nina Fisher, Technical Writer
Carl Friedrichs, Virginia Insitute of Marine Science
Jack Frye, Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation
Chuck Gallegos, Smithsonian Environmental Research Center
Allen Gellis, US Geological Survey
Peter Gold, EPA Region III
Jeff Halka, Maryland Geological Survey
Julie Herman, Virginia Institute of Marine Science
Michael Kemp, University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science
Evamaria Koch, University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science
Doug Levin, NOAA-Chesapeake Bay Office
Shah Nawaz, District of Columbia Department of the Environment
Mike Naylor,Maryland Department of Natural Resources
Cindy Palinkas, University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science
Sara Parr, Chesapeake Research Consortium-CBPO
Nancy Rybicki, US Geological Survey
Larry Sanford, University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science
Kelly Shenk, EPA Chesapeake Bay Program Office
Chris Spaur, Army Corps of Engineers, Baltimore District
Rebecca Thur, Chesapeake Research Consortium
Elizabeth Van Dolah, Chesapeake Research Consortium
Jennifer Volk, Delaware Natural Resources and Environmental Conservation
Ping Wang,University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science





Workshop Briefing Materials and Products

An Introduction to Sedimentsheds: Sediment and Its Relationship to Water Clarity
Chesapeake Bay Program Sediment Workgroup. May 2007.

Workshop Report: An Introduction to Sedimentsheds: Sediment and Its Relationshop to Chesaepake Bay Water Clarity

Factsheet: Bay Sediment: Sediment and Its Relationship to Chesapeake Bay Water Clarity

Press Release: Sediment gets a thorough vetting at workshop





Workshop Presentations
**All workshop presentations are not yet peer-reviewed and are intended
for scientific discussion; not setting policy.


Jeff Halka, Maryland Geological Survey
Overview of Major Sediment Sources

Rich Batiuk, Chesapeake Bay Program Office
(To download presentation, please right click the link and select "save target as")
Primers for Chesapeake Bay Water Clarity Criteria, Shallow Water Designated Use and States Water Quality Standards

Chuck Gallegos, Smithsonian Environmental Research Center
Factors Affecting Light Attenuation and Shallow Water Clarity Impairment

EvaMaria Koch, Chesapeake Bay Program Office
SAV Habitat Requirements Other than Light

Larry Sanford and Carl Friedrichs, University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science
Fine-Grained Sediment Transport Processes in the Chesapeake Bay

Carl Cerco, US Army Corps of Engineers
The 2002 Chesapeake Bay Model

Lee Currey, Maryland Department of the Environment
(To download presentation, please right click the link and select "save target as")
An Introduction to Sedimentsheds: Progress Report from the CBP Sediment Workgroup

Keely Clifford, Chesapeake Bay Program
Workshop Introduction and Overview



Photo Credit: Jane Thomas, IAN Image Library (SAV) (www.ian.umces.edu/imagelibrary/)


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