The Chesapeake Bay Commission estimates that the population of the Chesapeake Bay will expand to 17.4 million by the year 2020. This population increase is expected to cause major stress to the Bay ecosystem if measure are not introduced to address management practices.
In 2010, President Obama used executive powers to enforce the Clean Water Act within the Chesapeake Bay watershed. Under Obama’s approval the EPA created the Chesapeake Bay Clean Water Blue Print, which established Total Maximum Daily Load or TMDL, limits towards nitrogen, phosphorus and sediments. The EPA set these limits within each of the six states in the watershed; combining water quality monitoring data and scientific knowledge regarding acceptable pollution levels for the Bay’s ecosystem. Chesapeake’s size and denomination as impaired led the EPA to make a timeline allowing the watershed to improve or governmental actions would commence. The threshold wasn’t met and the EPA had to limit nutrient and sediment runoff as the basis of improving water quality and restoring the Bay’s ecosystem.