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Carrie W. Capuco
Director of Communications
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ccapuco@werf.org

Research Contract Awarded to Understand Implementation of Stream Restoration Crediting Guidance in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed

January 19, 2018 (Alexandria, VA) – The Water Environment & Reuse Foundation (now known as The Water Research Foundation) recently awarded a contract to the Center for Watershed Protection (Ellicott City, Maryland) to begin “Crediting Water Quality Benefits from Stream Restoration: Implementation of Case Studies in the Mid-Atlantic Region” (SIWM-17-17). Stream restoration projects provide multiple water quality benefits, pollutant trading, and mitigation opportunities when regulatory programs require pollutant load reduction. In the Chesapeake Bay alone, 700 miles of stream restoration projects are expected to be implemented to achieve nutrient and sediment load reductions defined by the EPA-approved Chesapeake Bay total maximum daily loads. The WE&RF Stream Restoration Crediting Guidance includes the Chesapeake Bay Program stream restoration crediting protocols and provides a technical framework for quantifying water quality benefits of a specific suite of stream restoration practices.

This research project will highlight experiences that utilities and municipalities have had with stream restoration protocols across the Chesapeake Bay Watershed and in the Mid-Atlantic Region. The Stream Restoration Crediting Guidance focuses on the technical aspects of crediting approaches to stream restoration, rather than programmatic or regulatory considerations of crediting programs.

The overall objective is to apply the study results from Stream Restoration Crediting Guidance in a real-world setting. The project will be conducted in three main tasks:

  1. Review monitoring studies and stream restoration crediting and pollutant trading programs in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed and states within the Mid-Atlantic Region.
  2. Conduct surveys within the Chesapeake Bay Watershed to gather data from utilities and municipalities that have demonstrated success in using real-world data in obtaining water quality credits from a state regulatory agency.
  3. Survey states outside of the Chesapeake Bay Watershed that have adopted or are considering implementing stream crediting and pollutant trading programs that could benefit from the WE&RF Stream Restoration Crediting Guidance.

The case studies and experiences collected will help utilities and municipalities in other states / regions learn how to apply the crediting guidance to implement stream restoration/trading programs.

The project is expected to be completed by the end of 2018.
 
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The Water Environment & Reuse Foundation (now The Water Research Foundation), a 501c3 non-profit organization, funds research, pilot projects, and technology demonstrations that maximize the value of water, including wastewater, stormwater, and other water sources. WE&RF is recognized worldwide as a trusted source of innovation and peer-reviewed research in wastewater, water reuse, and resource recovery. www.werf.org