Conowingo dredging plan moves ahead

With last week’s signature of the Conowingo Dam Sediment Characterization Study Right of Entry, the first portion of the Conowingo Dredging and Innovative and Beneficial Reuse Pilot Project is moving forward, the Maryland Environmental Service (MES) reports.

Work is expected to begin on the sediment characterization portion of the pilot project in December 2020.

MES contractor Northgate Dutra Joint Venture will be collecting sediment samples in the Maryland portion of the Susquehanna River for chemical and physical analysis.

Once collected, this data will be used to categorize the sediment according to the Maryland Department of the Environment’s (MDE) Innovative and Beneficial Reuse guidance to help determine environmentally safe reuse options.

Also, modeling tools are being considered to simulate different dredging scenarios and their influence on Chesapeake Bay water quality. 

The State continues to work with Exelon Generation Company, LLC regarding right of entry to perform the pilot dredging project. It is expected that this part of the project would commence fall 2021.

In fact, scientific reports confirm that the Conowingo Dam has reached full capacity and can no longer prevent pollution from entering the bay, which severely threatens the ability to meet Chesapeake Bay cleanup goals.

Photo: Exelon Corporation