Event Title

Applying Best Management Practices to Aid Snyder County in Meeting the Watershed Implementation Plan Phase 3 Reduction Goals in Nitrogen, Phosphorus, and Sediment

Faculty Advisor

Dr. Katherine Straub

Start Date

23-4-2019 1:00 PM

End Date

23-4-2019 2:00 PM

Description

The Chesapeake Bay is at risk due to excess nutrients that reach the Bay from upstream tributaries. Primarily due to agricultural runoff, the Bay has been exposed to high loads of nitrogen, phosphorus, and sediment that have caused algal blooms which deplete the Bay’s aquatic ecosystems of dissolved oxygen. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has mandated Watershed Implementation Plans (WIPs) that allow states to independently reach reduction goals by 2025 that will restore the Bay’s health to a higher standard. Within Pennsylvania, county targets have been developed. Snyder County specifically has a goal of reducing nitrogen loads by 1.4 million pounds per year, and phosphorus by 72,759 pounds per year. This research focuses on investigating what the most feasible Best Management Practices (BMPs) for Snyder County will be to meet these reduction goals. This study was conducted by using the Chesapeake Assessment Scenario Tool (CAST) for numerical analysis and stakeholder interviews for input about the economic feasibility of implementation practices on sectors of both private and public land. Our results suggest that it is possible to meet the reduction goals by 2025 in Snyder County using a combination of farm manure management, stream buffers, streambank fencing, and animal heavy use area BMPs. Recommendations for future study focus on ever-changing nutrient loads and annual updates on BMPs that are being installed in Snyder County.

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Apr 23rd, 1:00 PM Apr 23rd, 2:00 PM

Applying Best Management Practices to Aid Snyder County in Meeting the Watershed Implementation Plan Phase 3 Reduction Goals in Nitrogen, Phosphorus, and Sediment

The Chesapeake Bay is at risk due to excess nutrients that reach the Bay from upstream tributaries. Primarily due to agricultural runoff, the Bay has been exposed to high loads of nitrogen, phosphorus, and sediment that have caused algal blooms which deplete the Bay’s aquatic ecosystems of dissolved oxygen. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has mandated Watershed Implementation Plans (WIPs) that allow states to independently reach reduction goals by 2025 that will restore the Bay’s health to a higher standard. Within Pennsylvania, county targets have been developed. Snyder County specifically has a goal of reducing nitrogen loads by 1.4 million pounds per year, and phosphorus by 72,759 pounds per year. This research focuses on investigating what the most feasible Best Management Practices (BMPs) for Snyder County will be to meet these reduction goals. This study was conducted by using the Chesapeake Assessment Scenario Tool (CAST) for numerical analysis and stakeholder interviews for input about the economic feasibility of implementation practices on sectors of both private and public land. Our results suggest that it is possible to meet the reduction goals by 2025 in Snyder County using a combination of farm manure management, stream buffers, streambank fencing, and animal heavy use area BMPs. Recommendations for future study focus on ever-changing nutrient loads and annual updates on BMPs that are being installed in Snyder County.