WATER RESOURCES RESEARCH GRANT PROPOSAL
Project ID: 2002DC5B
Title: Bimonitoring Anacostia Watershed Pollutants
Project Type: Research
Focus Categories: Water Quality, Toxic Substances
Keywords: watershed; pollutants; biomonitoring; Corbicula
Start Date: 03/01/2002
End Date: 02/28/2003
Federal Funds: $9,774
Non-Federal Matching Funds: $16,584
Congressional District: DC
Dr. Harriette Phelps
University of the District of Columbia
A number of studies are being made of the problems of severe contamination of the10 km Anacostia River estuary that is the major water body of the District of Columbia. Restoration of the river is a major objective of the Mayor. These studies are being coordinated by the Anacostia Watershed Toxics Alliance of which UDC is a member. The great majority of studies are examining chemical contamination of the sediments and several sediment remediation plans are being planned. Very few studies are looking at the sources or bioavailability of the contaminants. The sources will have to be identified and controlled for effective remediation of the Anacostia estuary to take place.
The most recent WRRC study used the locally available Asiatic clam (Corbicula fluminea) to biomonitor dissolved and suspended contaminants at tributary inputs of four Anacostia subwatersheds. Two Maryland tributaries were found to be major sources of bioavailable low molecular weight PCBs, PAHs and pesticides. The research objective of this proposed continuation study will be to examine the remaining major subwatersheds of the Anacostia for their individual bioavailable pollutant signatures. This project will continue to place caged Asiatic clams in the subwatershed tributaries to indentify their contribution to bioavailable Anacostia pollutants.