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Water Quality in Tropical Waters In Relation to Onshore Development

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La Parguera is the site of a Marine Reserve and counts among its unique habitats a phosphorescent bay, important reef systems and a diverse and healthy mangrove system including significant cays. Areas of its waters see some of the heaviest use in the US. A study, underway since 1998, has analyzed inshore and near-shore waters for a number of biological, chemical and physical parameters and related these to onshore development, a sewage treatment plant discharge and known stormwater discharges. Among the thirty parameters monitored were bacteriological indicators (total and fecal coliforms, Escherichia coli, Enterococcus) total suspended solids, chlorophyll, light attenuation (light reaching the bottom compared to surface insolation) and nutrients (NH3, NO3, NO2 and PO4). In addition, bacteriological monitoring data were analyzed according to US EPA standards for recreational waters and violations also related to onshore development.

A number of sampling stations were monitored, selected for the onshore development, stormwater runoff and the littoral and coastal systems located there. At minimum discretion the categories used were presence or absence of mangroves and presence or absence of onshore development.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2000-01-01

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