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Contaminated Sediments Database for the Gulf of Maine

U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 02-403:

M.R. Buchholtz ten Brink1, F.T. Manheim1, E.L. Mecray1 M.E. Hastings1 and J.M. Currence1 in collaboration with J.W. Farrington2 , S.H. Jones3, P.F. Larsen4, B.W. Tripp2, G.T. Wallace, Jr5, L.G. Ward3 and with participation from T.J. Fredette6, M.L. Liebman7, and W. Smith Leo8

This product is the result of a collaborative effort of principal investigators from the 1U.S. Geological Survey Coastal and Marine Geology Program (USGS-CMGP), 2Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI), the 3University of New Hampshire (UNH), 4 Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences, the 5University of Massachusetts (UMASS), and active participation from the 6U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACOE), the 7U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA), the 8Massachusetts Water Resources Authority (MWRA), the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and other federal and state agencies. Funding was provided by participating institutions and the Gulf of Maine Regional Marine Research Program.


Bottom sediments in the Gulf of Maine and its estuaries have accumulated pollutants of many types, including metals and organic compounds of agricultural, industrial, and household derivation.  Much analytical and descriptive data has been obtained on these sediments over the past decades, but only a small effort had been made, prior to this project, to compile and edit the published and unpublished data in forms suitable for a variety of users. The Contaminated Sediments Database for the Gulf of Maine provides a compilation and synthesis of existing data to help establish the environmental status of our coastal sediments and the transport paths and fate of contaminants in this region. This information, in turn, forms one of the essential bases for developing successful remediation and resource management policies.

Gulf of Maine Bathymetry

This document should be cited as:
Buchholtz ten Brink, M.R., Manheim, F.T., Mecray, E.L. , Hastings, M.E., and Currence, J.M., along with Farrington, J.W., Fredette, T.J., Jones, S.H., Liebman, M.L., Larsen, P.F., Smith Leo, W., Tripp, B.W., Wallace, Jr., G.T., and Ward, L.G., 2002, Contaminated sediments database for the Gulf of Maine, U.S. Geological Survey Open-file Report No. 02-403, Online at

This compilation of available data includes many references by hyperlink to information created and maintained by other organizations. Please note that USGS does not control and cannot guarantee the continued accessibility, relevance, timeliness, or accuracy of those outside sources.

This report is preliminary and has not been reviewed for conformity with U.S. Geological Survey editorial standards (or with the North American Stratigraphic Code). Any use of trade, product, or firm names is for descriptive purposes only and does not imply endorsement by the U.S. government.

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