By Tom Damm
When the late New York City Mayor Ed Koch wanted to get a sense for, “How’m I doin’?” he’d ask people on the street.
It crunches all sorts of statistics and produces an annual update on health and restoration efforts called Bay Barometer. The latest one is now available.
So how’s the ecosystem doin’?
The science-based snapshot shows that while the Bay is impaired, signs of resilience abound.
A number of indicators of watershed health, like water clarity and dissolved oxygen levels, point to a stressed ecosystem. But other factors, such as a smaller than normal summertime dead zone and an increase in juvenile crabs entering the fishery, provide a brighter picture.
Recent restoration work and pollution cuts also offer signs of progress for the nation’s largest estuary.
About the Author: Tom Damm has been with EPA since 2002 and now serves as communications coordinator for the region’s Water Protection Division.