What is the Dredged Material Management Program?

The state of Maryland is charged with a dual responsibility for providing safe passage to the large cargo vessels that travel the Chesapeake Bay and for protecting its sensitive ecosystem.

As a result, Maryland’s Dredged Material Management Program has evolved in response to an increased awareness of the impacts that dredging can have on the Chesapeake Bay. The approach has shifted from placing dredged material in the open waters of the Bay to a sophisticated mix of strategies that includes wetland restoration, island recreation, upland placement, construction of carefully engineered containment facilities, and the innovative reuse of dredged material. The dredging program also relies on broad participation by citizens, scientific experts, regulatory agencies, and business partners.

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Project Sites

The Port currently relies on three active dredged material placement sites. Pooles Island, the last open water placement site in the Maryland portion of the Chesapeake Bay, closed in 2010. Hart-Miller Island was closed to dredged material in 2009, but remains an active site for public recreation and habitat enhancement.