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COAST's National Status & Trends

An Assessment of Two Decades of Contaminant Monitoring in the Nation’s Coastal Zone.
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mussel watch cover

NS&T is comprised of two nationwide programs, Mussel Watch and Bioeffects that are designed to describe the current status of, and detect changes in, the environmental quality of our Nation’s estuarine and coastal waters through environmental monitoring, assessment and related research.

Mussel Watch

Mussel Watch Program is the longest continuous, nationwide contaminant monitoring program in U.S. coastal waters. The program analyzes sediment and bivalve tissue chemistry for a suite of organic contaminants and trace metals to identify trends at over 300 selected coastal sites from 1986 to present.
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Bioeffects

Bioeffects Assessment Program identifies and assesses biological effects associated with contaminant exposure. Over forty intensive regional studies have been conducted since 1986 using the Sediment Quality Triad approach which utilizes a stratified random sampling method to determine the areal extent of contaminated sediments. The data include: sediment chemistry, toxicity, and species diversity and quantity for the same suite of organic contaminants and trace metals as the Mussel Watch Program.
NS&T Data Portal >