According to a new report, the Chesapeake Bay is showing encouraging signs of improvement but still has dead zones, fish kills and pollution. The Chesapeake Bay Foundation's "State of the Bay Report" says there have been improvements in eight of 13 indicators, including a rebounding blue crab population and flourishing underwater grasses. Using a grading system, the bay's overall grade was a D-plus, up slightly from the 2008 grade of D.
But William Baker, president of the foundation, says it's still a "system out of balance."
The report was released as the Environmental Protection Agency prepares this week to establish mandatory pollution limits for six states and the District of Columbia, which comprise the 64,000 square-mile watershed. Those limites are aimed at reducing the bay's nitrogen and phosphorous levels by one-fourth by 2025.
Earlier this month, the House of Representatives passed the 21st Century Cures Act in a rare bi-partisan effort. The bill is meant to speed the development of lifesaving treatments, but critics warn it may also allow ineffective or even harmful drugs onto the market.
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