A Multi-Disciplinary Study of the Effects of Stream Restoration on Nitrogen Processing in Minebank Run, Baltimore County, Maryland
Edward J. Doheny
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, U.S. Geological Survey, Baltimore County Department of Environmental Protection and Resource Management, and the Institute of Ecosystem Studies are collaborating on a multi-disciplinary study of the effects of stream restoration on nitrogen processing in a selected reach of Minebank Run in Baltimore County, Maryland. The study is designed to investigate the nitrate-removal capacity of Minebank Run before and after the stream channel is restored. Streamflow, rainfall, groundwater, water-quality, and geomorphic data are being collected and analyzed to establish the pre-restoration condition and function of the stream.
Three well transects have been established in locations where specific restoration techniques are to be employed. These techniques include channel-bank rehabilitation and introduction of riparian vegetation, modification of riffle-pool sequences, reconstruction of channel meanders, and physical relocation of the stream channel.
The stream channel is scheduled for restoration in early 2004. Post-restoration data collection and analysis will show whether restoration, or specific restoration techniques, may enhance denitrification by reconnecting the stream channel to the flood plain, increasing carbon supply, or by increasing hyporheic zone activity and nitrogen processing.
stream restoration, nitrogen processing, denitrification, hyporheic zone