The draft Technical Report of the State of Narragansett Bay and its Watershed is available for review and comment until May 22nd, all comments are welcomed! See: "State of the Bay & its Watershed > Technical Report" for more information

Long List of Factors Stressing Out Narragansett Bay – April 27, 2017

[Source: EcoRI.com – April 27, 2017]

By FRANK CARINI/ecoRI News staff

The Narragansett Bay Estuary Program has developed a draft report on the status of Narragansett Bay entitled “State of the Bay and its Watershed.” The report assesses 24 indicators throughout the bay and its watershed — some 60 percent of it is in Massachusetts — based on best available science and current research efforts.

Public comments on the draft report will be accepted until the close of business May 22. Comments should be e-mailed to info@nbep.org. The Narragansett Bay Estuary Program (NBEP) will revise and finalize the report and prepare a summary based on public feedback.

ecoRI News recently went through the report. Numerous factors, beyond climate change, sea-level rise and legacy contaminants, stress Rhode Island’s most significant natural resource. Here is a look at some of the others detailed in the NBEP’s draft report:

The estimated populations in 2014 of the Massachusetts and Rhode Island sections of the Narragansett Bay watershed. (U.S. Census Bureau Block Projections)

The estimated populations in 2014 of the Massachusetts and Rhode Island sections of the Narragansett Bay watershed. (U.S. Census Bureau Block Projections)

Population growth typically leads to increased nutrient loading, more impervious surfaces and habitat fragmentation. From 2000 to 2010, the population living within the Narragansett Bay watershed increased by nearly 8 percent, to 1.95 million people.

Quote: “It is well established that the way human society uses and protects the land within a watershed has critical implications for freshwater streams, estuarine waters, and associated habitats.”

Quote: “To protect the environmental quality of the watershed, effective land use management and regional planning practices must be implemented.”

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