Houston Ship Channel research program.
Water and Sewage Works
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A Texas A&M University research team is doing an analytical study of one of the nation's most polluted waterways -- the 24 mile Houston Ship Channel. The channel study will significantly aid water quality agencies making decisions on water pollution restrictions. A variety of mathematical models are being developed to predict water quality in estuaries. These models are expected to become management tools to improve the quality of estuarine systems. Organic wastes from Houston area cities and industries, which require roughly 500,000 lbs of oxygen per day for their decay, are dumped into the channel daily. The research team is particularly concerned with what happens to the organic sludges in shallow areas of the bays. The group also is interested in toxic metal ions, nutrients and agricultural chemicals. Studies of heavy metals are made through analysis of industrial outfalls and sludge blankets around the outfalls.