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Stormwater runoff is the largest source of pollution to the Severn River. As the watershed of the river has been developed, the number of parking lots, roads, roofs, and other impervious surfaces has increased. These impervious surfaces do not absorb rainfall, instead the rainwater runs off of these surfaces with increasing speed and force, causing erosion and flushing pollutants like nitrogen, phosphorus, sediment, and toxics into the river. Much of our stormwater is funneled into the river through outdated gray infrastructure and degraded stream valleys. SRA works to address this pollution by replacing gray infrastructure with stormwater best management practices.
To track how our river responds to this pollution, volunteers collect water quality data from April-October across a river-wide network of monitoring stations. Dissolved oxygen, pH, temperature, salinity, and clarity are measured and recorded from over 50 locations. These data are shared with the Bay-wide Chesapeake Monitoring Cooperative and used for the annual State of the Severn report.
The Severn River MGO program uses volunteers to grow oysters on their pier. In the fall each volunteer will receive oyster spat-on-shell and cages to grow in a protected way for the critical first year of life. In the summer, volunteers will deliver their year-olds to a chosen reef to plant their oysters.
If you would like more information or to participate, please fill out the form:
Severn River Association provides adult education through our John Wright Speaker Series. We cover topics such as: new technology to monitor oysters, osprey on the Patuxent, jellyfish and their habitat, bees and their vital role in nature, and much more.
February 27th, 7-8:30pm Sailing and Sustainability with Gary Jobson
Cafe Mezzanotte, in person or virtual via Zoom. Register HERE.
SRA offers this educational program for students grades 4-10 where “class” is held aboard our 20-ft. Maritime Skiff, R/V Sea Girl. The Floating Classroom provides science-based experiences to enhance appreciation of the Severn River. During each 3- hour tour, students get a chance to use water quality monitoring equipment to check on oxygen levels, pH, temperature, salinity, and clarity in the water. They also sample, identify, and map underwater grasses, check on oyster reefs, and review other habitats for the creatures that share the river with us.
The 2023 Floating Classroom was made possible through funding from Community Foundation of Anne Arundel County.