The Chesapeake Bay Program (CBP) is based on good science and high quality data. This has allowed the program to set and implement meaningful goals. The research phase resulted in the “1983 Chesapeake Bay Agreement”, which called for the jurisdictions to focus existing pollution control programs on reducing the nutrient loads to the Bay. A second “Bay Agreement” was developed and signed by the jurisdictions in 1987. This agreement contained 27 specific goals including a Basinwide Nutrient Reduction Strategy to reduce “1985 controllable” nutrient loads to the Bay by 40 percent in the year 2000. To assure high quality monitoring data, CBP established a strong quality assurance and quality control procedure which is used for all monitoring. To assist with the monitoring a computer program, “Chesapeake Bay Automated Monitoring System” was developed to evaluate the quality of field and laboratory data and to allow the data to be directly loaded into the CBP computers. The Chesapeake Bay Program Office developed models for the drainage basin and the water of the Bay. The watershed model simulates the pollutant loads from eight land uses, the majority of the point sources and atmospheric deposition. It processes these loads through the river systems and delivers the load to the Bay for use in the Bay model. The Bay model uses these loads and adds atmospheric deposition, loads from the ocean interface and loads from bottom sediments to simulate water quality data at all points in the Bay. The models were used to confirm that the 40% nutrient reduction goal was correct, resulting in an amendment to the 1987 Agreement, calling for a commitment by the jurisdictions to develop tributary specific strategies to reach the goal. The tributary strategies lay out the future goals and direction that must be taken to reach the nutrient reduction goals. These tributary strategies are being evaluated by the program office, using the models. The results of the evaluation and model simulation of the implementation progress in the basin are discussed along with the economic implications of reaching these goals.

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