A Water-Quality Simulation Model for Well Mixed Estuaries and Coastal Seas

Vol. V, Jamaica Bay Rainstorms

by Eugene C. Gritton

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A simulation measuring the effects of stormdrain flooding on the water quality of Jamaica Bay, N.Y. Sewage entering Jamaica Bay in dry weather is treated, but storm runoff can overtax treatment plants, whereupon untreated water enters the bay. Four runs of RAND's model of the bay were used to simulate the effect of two typical rainstorms, one at high tide and one at ebb. Each was simulated with and without the effects of a new treatment facility at Spring Creek. The simulations yield contrasting printouts showing coliform-bacteria concentrations both on contour maps and in concentration histories at stations in the bay. Results indicate that (1) Spring Creek influences the quality of bay water more than does any other drainage basin; (2) the new plant significantly retards the increase of bacteria in the bay following a storm; but (3) after rainstorms, Spring Creek alone cannot maintain bay water at quality standards.

This report is part of the RAND Corporation report series. The report was a product of the RAND Corporation from 1948 to 1993 that represented the principal publication documenting and transmitting RAND's major research findings and final research.

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