Bay Journal

Timothy B. Wheeler

Plan to put wastewater into 2 MD trout streams raises heated debate

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Trout are among the most highly prized of freshwater fish; their presence in a stream is a sign that the water is clean, cold and rich in all the things fish need to survive, grow and reproduce.

So, perhaps it’s no surprise that these pollution-sensitive fish are at the center of a debate in Maryland about how best to sustain them amid the sprawling development that threatens...

House panel proposes $60 million in federal funding for Bay restoration

The Chesapeake Bay restoration effort stands to get $60 million in federal funds next year under a bill acted on this week by a U.S. House subcommittee. That’s a significant cut from this year’s spending level, but a clear rejection of President Donald Trump’s proposal to completely de-fund the cleanup.

The House Interior and Environment Appropriations Subcommittee included...

Rock solid: Oysters abound on restored reefs in Harris Creek, survey finds

You may not be able to get blood from a stone, but it appears you can get a lot of oysters.

Biologists checking reefs restored in 2013 in Maryland’s Harris Creek found the vast majority crowded with oysters, according to a new report. And those reefs built by piling granite rocks on the creek’s bottom had four times as many oysters clinging to them, on average, as did any of...

Oysters making themselves at home on reefs with alternative substrate

An unremarkable thing happened in a remarkable way during the recently ended oyster season in the Chesapeake Bay.

Some Virginia watermen harvested bivalves from public oyster grounds in the Rappahannock River. There’s nothing unusual about that, of course, but these shellfish had settled as baby “spat” and grown to harvestable size on a thick bed of gravel-sized stones that had...

EPA moves to rescind controversial Clean Water rule

It came as no surprise, but the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced Tuesday that it is moving to withdraw the so-called Clean Water Rule, potentially making it easier for farmers, builders and others to disturb some streams or wetlands.

The regulation, also known as the “Waters of the United States” rule, had been targeted for rollback since February, when President...

Yorktown museum puts Revolution in context

Anyone who paid attention in school can probably recall at least a few names, places and maybe a date from the Revolutionary War: George Washington, Lexington, Valley Forge, the Declaration of Independence, 1776. Now, a newly enhanced museum at Yorktown, VA, the site of the final battle in that founding conflict, offers Americans a fresh look at the nation’s complicated — some...

Bay’s ‘dead zone’ expected to be bigger than average this summer

A year after experiencing its best water quality in decades, the Chesapeake Bay is expected to have a larger than average “dead zone” this summer, where fish, crabs and shellfish will struggle to breathe.

Researchers with the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science (UMCES) and the University of Michigan are forecasting that the volume of oxygen-starved water in...

Shad program hatching next generation of environmentalists

The science lab at Key Elementary School in Northwest Washington, DC, buzzed with energy as the fourth graders hunched over tables. They peered into Petri dishes at the tiny, pearl-shaped blobs floating in them. Carefully, they wielded eyedroppers to separate the clear ones from those that appeared cloudy.

Then, someone gasped.

“Something popped out!” one youngster exclaimed....

State leaders oppose federal pullback from Bay cleanup

Amid encouraging signs that the Chesapeake Bay’s health is on the upswing, state leaders of the restoration effort called Thursday for Congress not to let the Trump administration pull back from the federal-state collaboration.

At the annual meeting of the Bay Program’s Executive Council, the governors of Maryland and Virginia, plus officials from the four other Bay watershed...

Baltimore harbor safer for swimming in places, but still badly degraded

The outer reaches of Baltimore’s harbor were somewhat safer to swim in last year, but overall water quality in the harbor and the streams that feed into it continues to post failing or near-failing grades, according to the latest annual assessment.

The Healthy Harbor campaign's report card for 2016 found that fecal bacteria levels, which are indicative of the presence of raw...

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About Timothy B. Wheeler

Timothy B. Wheeler's avatar Timothy B. Wheeler is managing editor and project writer for the Bay Journal. He has more than two decades of experience covering the environment for The Baltimore Sun and other media outlets. .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

 

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