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Sediment sampling to begin in Detroit, Rouge rivers


Sept. 1, 2021
EGLE Media Office,, 517-284-9278
Sam Noffke, Aquatic Biologist,, 517-755-7173

An effort is underway to gather data on the nature and extent of the chemical contamination in the sediments of the Detroit and Rouge rivers. With a long history of industrial development, a legacy of pollution remains in the sediments of both rivers.

Beginning Sept. 8, and through October, scientists will be on the Detroit River in the area of the Trenton Channel and on the lower Rouge River to gather samples that will be taken to a laboratory for analysis.

The sampling work is led by the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE) through the contract firm EA-Engineering, Science, and Technology and in collaboration with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency using funding from the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative.

The work is intended to inform decisions on future remediation efforts through the rivers and is a step in the process to remediate, restore and revitalize the Detroit and Rouge rivers, eventually delisting them as Areas of Concern.

All samples will be taken by boat or barge with surface samples taken using a ponar device, samples of up to 10 feet taken using a vibracore mechanism, and sediment traps that will collect sediment in the river as it drops out of the water column over the course of two-to-three weeks.

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