Waste Disposal Activities and the Protection of Estuaries and Coastal Waters

by Howard Levenson, US Congress, Washington, DC, USA,
William Barnard, US Congress, Washington, DC, USA,
Richard Denison, US Congress, Washington, DC, USA,
Gretchen Hund, US Congress, Washington, DC, USA,
Nick Sundt, US Congress, Washington, DC, USA,
Kathy Wagner, US Congress, Washington, DC, USA,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Coastal Zone '87


The disposal of wastes in the Nation's marine environments raises two fundamental issues: first, the general health of the several types of marine waters - estuaries, coastal waters, and the open ocean - that are used for disposal; and second, the nature and extent of the role that these waters can and should play in waste management. This paper summarizes OTA's findings and policy analyses regarding the health of estuaries and coastal waters. Estuaries and coastal waters around the country receive the vast majority of pollutants introduced into marine environments through waste disposal and other sources. As a result, many of these waters have exhibited a variety of adverse impacts, and their overall health is declining or threatened. These findings motivate several policy options aimed at maintaining or improving the health of the Nation's estuaries and coastal waters.

Subject Headings: Waste disposal | Estuaries | Sea water | Health hazards | Water pollution | Recycling | Water policy | Coastal management

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