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Water Quality Impacts of Urbanization, Climate Change, and Stormwater Best Management Practices in the Chesapeake Bay Basin: J.V. Loperfido


Project Title: Water Quality Impacts of Urbanization, Climate Change, and Stormwater Best Management Practices in the Chesapeake Bay Basin
Mendenhall Fellow: J.V. Loperfido, (703) 648-5134, jloperfido@usgs.gov
Duty Station: Reston, VA
Start Date: January 11, 2010
Education: Ph.D. (Civil & Environmental Engineering), University of Iowa, 2009
Research Advisors: Dianna M. Hogan, (703) 648-7240, dhogan@usgs.gov
  J.V. Loperfido
Project Description: In the Chesapeake Bay Basin, nutrient and sediment loads from increasing urban impervious surface cover are contributing to eutrophication and more widespread persistence of large hypoxic zones in the nation’s largest estuary. Climate change forecasts predict increases in the amount and intensity of precipitation in the basin, which will exacerbate runoff and pollutant fluxes from urban areas to the bay. Stormwater best management practices (BMPs) have been used to mitigate effects of urbanization; however, their efficacy on the watershed scale remains unclear. This research uses spatially detailed stormwater BMP databases and water quality and quantity data collected by high-temporal resolution in-situ sensors, automatic samplers, and grab samples to better estimate the efficacy of different BMP stormwater management protocols in the treatment of urban stormwater runoff. Specifically, instream nutrient and sediment concentrations will be correlated to watershed land use and BMP presence, spatial location, and management protocol using geographic information systems (GIS) software. The goal of this research is to provide information on BMP efficacy at the small watershed scale in support of local level resource manager information needs to minimize the effects of urbanization on the ecological health of the Chesapeake Bay and other at risk aquatic systems.

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Last modified: 16:08:30 Thu 13 Dec 2012