Controlling Nitrogen Loading to Coastal Waters

by Rosemary Monahan, US Environmental Protection Agency, Boston, United States,
Susan Beede, US Environmental Protection Agency, Boston, United States,
Joseph Costa, US Environmental Protection Agency, Boston, United States,
Katrina Kipp, US Environmental Protection Agency, Boston, United States,
Clayton Penniman, US Environmental Protection Agency, Boston, United States,
Cynthia Pring-Ham, US Environmental Protection Agency, Boston, United States,
Bruce Rosinoff, US Environmental Protection Agency, Boston, United States,
JoAnne Sulak, US Environmental Protection Agency, Boston, United States,



Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Coastal Zone '91

Abstract: Of the countless contaminants that reach coastal waters, nitrogen is one of the most problematic and least regulated. There is ample evidence that many coastal embayments are overwhelmed by excessive anthropogenic nitrogen additions. From Maine to Connecticut, no New England state is immune to problems caused by excess nitrogen loadings; nuisance algal blooms, hypoxia (low dissolved oxygen), and fish kills are becoming common. Through the National Estuary Program and the Near Coastal Waters Program, Federal, state, and local officials are documenting problems resulting from nitrogen loading, and developing plans for controlling the flow of nutrients to coastal waters. Using examples from four sites, we show methods for quantifying nutrient problems and for managing sources. Included are approaches for controlling point sources, specifically sewage treatment plants, and for controlling nonpoint sources, especially septic systems and runoff.

Subject Headings: Nitrogen | Sea water | Load factors | Water pollution | Nutrients | Nonpoint pollution | Water treatment plants | Dissolved oxygen | North America | United States | New England | Connecticut | Maine

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