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Chemical Spill Characteristics in the San Diego Bay

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Dispersion of ocean pollutants in estuarine environments and bays (such as San Diego Bay) depends on the location of the source of the pollutants relative to the mouth and the tidal excursion, which is the net horizontal distance over which a pollutant particle moves during one tidal cycle of flood and ebb. Pollutant dispersion was investigated using a coupled hydrodynamic and chemical discharge model in this study. The results show the existence of two distinct (northern and southern) spill patterns of pollutant dispersion. The northern spill pattern is characterized by fast reduction of the pollutant concentration in the water column, rapid dispersion of pollutants to the San Diego port and to outside of the San Diego Bay, and slow dispersion of pollutants to the southern bay. The southern spill pattern is characterized by slow reduction of the pollutant concentration in the water column, slow dispersion, and confinement of pollutants in the southern San Diego Bay. The results may be useful for ocean pollution control and management.
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Keywords: San Diego Bay; chemical dispersion; chemical spill patterns; ocean pollution; water quality management

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2011-03-01

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  • The Marine Technology Society Journal is the flagship publication of the Marine Technology Society. It publishes the highest caliber, peer-reviewed papers on subjects of interest to the society: marine technology, ocean science, marine policy and education. The Journal is dedicated to publishing timely special issues on emerging ocean community concerns while also showcasing general interest and student-authored works.
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