Monitoring and Modeling the Effects of Stormwater Source Controls on Sediment Quality in Tacoma, Washington

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Following the successful Superfund sediment remediation in the Thea Foss Waterway (2006), the City of Tacoma manages sediment recontamination along its downtown waterfront using a multi-faceted program which includes sediment/stormwater monitoring; an EPA-supported sediment recontamination model (Water Quality Analysis Simulation Program); source control; and a GIS-based pollutant loading model (Hydrologic Simulation Program Fortran).

The City's stormwater source control program has resulted in statistically significant reductions of many chemicals in stormwater based on the multi-decade monitoring. In particular, it has been demonstrated that system-wide storm line cleaning was successful at removing historical contamination, resulting in statistically significant reductions in polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons and bis(2-ethylhexyl)phthalate concentrations at the outfalls. For ongoing contaminant contributions, a GIS-based pollutant loading model will be used to identify areas that contribute disproportionately to stormwater pollution, to focus and recommend costeffective source control investments and to compare the cost-effectiveness of treatment and management practices for reducing pollutant loads.
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