An Assessment of the Ecological Condition of Long Island Sound, 1990–1993
Rent the article at a discountRent now
* Final gross prices may vary according to local VAT.Get Access
Data from the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) Environmental Monitoring and Assessment Program (EMAP) from 1990 to 1993 were used to assess the condition of the Long Island Sound (LIS) estuary. Ambient water, sediment and biota were collected during the summer months from 53 LIS stations using an unbiased sampling design. The design consists of two LIS subunits, LIS proper, and small estuaries (<2.6 km2) at the margins of the Sound. Selected indicators of condition included: benthic species composition, abundance and biomass; fish species composition and gross external pathology; sediment physical and chemical characterization and sediment toxicity; and water clarity and quality. Results of the four-year sampling indicated that 28(±11)% of the areal extent of LIS proper had a benthic index < zero (impacted) and 51(±12)% of the area of small estuaries was impacted. Analysis of the results of other indicators also shows that small estuaries were particularly affected. For example, 42(±10)% of the areal extent of small estuaries exhibited sediment toxicity, and significant chemical contamination was evident in 22% of the area of small estuaries. Low dissolved oxygen (D.O.) concentrations (<5 ppm), however, appeared to affect only the deeper open waters of western LIS. Approximately 48(±12)% of the areal extent of LIS proper documented exposure to at least moderate D.O. stress (<5 ppm). The overall results of this monitoring study indicate that significant anthropogenic impacts have occurred in LIS and that if remediation was to take place, specific localized sediment problems would need attention. Point source and non-point source nutrient inputs to the Sound, which are believed to be the primary causative factor for the observed hypoxic conditions, would also need attention.
- AED Contribution #1821. This manuscript has been reviewed and approved for publication. Approval does not signify that the contents necessarily reflect the views and policies of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Mention of trade names, products, or services does not convey and should not be interpreted as conveying official EPA approval, endorsement or recommendation.
- Bowman, M. J.: 1977, 'Nutrient distributions and transport in Long Island Sound'. Estuarine Coastal Mar. Sci. 5, 531–548.
- Brosnan, T. M. and Stubin, A. I.: 1993, 'Spatial and temporal trends of dissolved oxygen in the east river and western Long Island Sound', in N. S. Van Patten (ed.), Long Island Research Conference Proceedings, Publication # CT-SG-93-03. Sea Grant Program, Groton, CT, pp. 169–175.
- Brownawell, B. J., Fisher, N. S. and Naeher, L.: 1992, Characterization of data base on toxic chemical contamination in Long Island Sound. Report Submmitted to the U.S. EPA Long Island Sound Study, 114 p.
- Farrow, D. R. G., Arnold, F. D., Lombardi, M. L., Main, M. B. and Eichelberger, P. D.: 1986, The National Coastal Pollutant Discharge Inventory. Strategic Assessment Branch, Ocean Assessment Division, National Ocean Service, NOAA. Rockville, MD, 40 p.
- Heimbuch, D., Wilson, H. and Weisberg, S.: 1994, Estimation formulae for EMAP sampling in the Louisianian and Virginian Provinces. Report to U.S. EPA. Coastal Environmental Services, Inc. Linthicum, MD. January 1994.
- Koppelman, L. E., Weyl, P. K., Gross, M. G. and Davies, D. S.: 1976, Urban Sea: Long Island Sound. Praeger Publishers. New York, NY. 223 p.
- Langstaff, L. M.: 1990, Demographic and land use trends in the Long Island Sound region. Long Island Sound Study Report, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Boston, MA, 16 p.
- Long, E. R., MacDonald, D. D., Smith, S. L. and Calder, F. D.: 1995, 'Incidence of adverse biological effects within ranges of chemical concentrations in marine and estuarine sediments', Environmental Management 19(1), 81–97.
- Long Island Sound Study: 1994, The Comprehensive Conservation and Management Plan, 167 p.
- NOAA (U.S. Dept. of Commerce): 1988, A Summary of Selected Data on Chemical Contaminants Collected During 1984, 1985, 1986 and 1987. National Status and Trends Program for Marine Environmental Quality. Progress Report.NOAA Technical Memorandum NOS OMA 44. Rockville, MD, 15 p.
- Parker, C. A. and O'Reilly, J. E.: 1991, 'Oxygen depletion in Long Island Sound: a historical perspective', Estuaries 14(3): 248–264.
- Pereira, J. J., Goldberg, R., Clark, P. E., Ziskowski, J. J., Greig, R. A. and Hughes, J. B.: 1994, Utilization of the Quinnipiac River and New Haven Harbor as a nursery area by winter flounder (Pleuronectes americanus). Final Report, Milford Laboratory, NationalMarine Fisheries Service, Milford, CT. 14 p. + Appendices.
- Reifsteck, D. M., Strobel, C. J. and Keith, D. J.: 1993, EMAP-Estuaries 1993 Virginian Province Field Operations and Safety Manual. U.S. EPA. Office of Research and Development, Narragansett, RI. June 1993.
- Strobel, C. J., Buffum, H.W., Benyi, S. J., Petrocelli, E. A., Reifsteck, D. R. and Keith, D. J.: 1995a, Statistical Summary: EMAP Estuaries Virginian Province - 1990 to 1993. EPA/620/R-94/026. U.S. EPA, Office of Research and Development, Narragansett, RI.
- Strobel, C. J., Valente, R. M. and Keith, D. J.: 1995b, Quality Assurance Report: EMAP Virginian Province, 1990-1993. EPA/620/R-95/007 U.S. EPA, Office of Research and Development, Narragansett, RI.
- Strobel, C. J., Buffum, H. W., Benyi, S. J. and Paul, J. F.: 1999, 'Environmental Monitoring and Assessment Program: Current status of Virginian Province (U.S.) Estuaries', Environ. Mon. Ass. 56, 1–25.
- U.S. EPA: 1971, Pollution of the Interstate Waters of Long Island Sound and its tributaries - Connecticut - New York. (Proceedings of a conference held in New Haven, CT, April 13-14, 1971.) Government Printing Office, Washington, DC, 640 p.
- U.S. EPA: 1994, Methods for Assessing the Toxicity of Sediment-associated Contaminants with Estuarine and Marine Amphipods. EPA/600/R-94/025. Office of Research and Development, Washington, DC. 140 p.
- U.S. EPA: 1995, EMAP-Estuaries Laboratory Methods Manual, Volume 1 - Biological and Physical Analyses. EPA/620/R-95/008. U.S. EPA, Office of Research and Development, Narragansett, RI.
- Valente, R. and Schoenherr, J.: 1991, EMAP-Estuaries Virginian Province Quality Assurance Project Plan. U.S. EPA, Office of Research and Development, Narragansett, RI. July.
- Valente, R. and Strobel, C. J.: 1993, Environmental Monitoring and Assessment Program-Estuaries: 1993 Virginian Province Quality Assurance Project Plan. U.S. EPA, Office of Research and Development, Narragansett, RI. May.
- Valente, R., Strobel, C. J., Pollard, J. E., Peres, K. M., Chiang, T. C. and Rosen, J.: 1990, Quality Assurance Project Plan for EMAP Near Coastal: 1990 Demonstration Project. U.S. EPA, Office of Research and Development, Narragansett, RI. July.
- Valente, R., Strobel, C. J. and Schimmel, S. C.: 1992, EMAP-Estuaries Virginian Province 1992 Quality Assurance Project Plan. U.S. EPA, Office of Research and Development, Narragansett, RI. July.
- Washington, H. G.: 1984, 'Diversity, biotic and similarity indices, a review with special relevance to aquatic ecosystems', Water Resources 18(6): 653–694.
- Welsh, B. L.: 1993, 'Physical Oceanography of Long Island Sound: an Ecological Perspective', in N. S. Van Patten (ed.), Long Island Research Conference Proceedings, Publication # CT-SG-93-03. Sea Grant Program, Groton, CT. pp. 23–33.
- Wolfe, D. A., Monahan, R., Stacey, P. E., Farrow, D. R. G. and Robertson, A.: 1991, 'Environmental quality of Long Island Sound: assessment and management issues', Estuaries 14(3), 224–236.
- An Assessment of the Ecological Condition of Long Island Sound, 1990–1993
Environmental Monitoring and Assessment
Volume 56, Issue 1 , pp 27-49
- Cover Date
- Print ISSN
- Online ISSN
- Kluwer Academic Publishers
- Additional Links
- ecological conditions
- Environmental Monitoring and Assessment Program
- Long Island Sound
- Industry Sectors