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EPA To Announce Final Pollution Diet For Bay

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The Environmental Protection Agency is planning to release it's final Pollution Diet for the Chesapeake Bay Wednesday.

The Pollution Diet is known formally as the TMDL or Total Maximum Daily Load -- it's the EPA saying how much pollution can go into the bay. Specifically: nitrogen, phosphorous and sediment.

What this pollution diet will mean for states around the Bay, including Maryland, Virginia and Delaware, is that they are going to have to figure out how to keep that pollution in check. So some farmers may have to change the way they apply fertilizer for example, wastewater treatment plants will be upgraded and cities will have to find ways to reduce runoff from their gutters.

Developers and farmers worry the diet will hurt them economically at a sensitive time, and retrofitting cities will be costly. But in many cases, pollution-reducing technologies are cheaper than polluting technologies, and in the case of farmers, states and the federal government help pay for costs.

However, officials in Virginia have warned if the state doesn't get help from the federal government, it won't be able to meet the new requirements.


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