Chesapeake Bay Program Water Quality Data Management

Interstate Commission on the Potomac River Basin

Readily available, high-quality monitoring data is invaluable to resource managers and scientists trying to understand river and bay ecosystems and assess their health. ICPRB’s multi-year Data Management project for the Chesapeake Bay Program (CBP) helps the program maintain and update very large databases of monitoring data collected in the Chesapeake Bay watershed, which includes the Potomac River.

ICPRB staff member Mike Mallonee is located at CBP offices in Annapolis, Maryland. He receives water quality and other data sets routinely submitted by program partners. He then steps the data through several quality assurance procedures and incorporates them into the large CBP relational databases ready to be made available on the internet. The monitoring data, as well as the indicators calculated from them, are used by diverse groups including resource managers, analysts, researchers, students, and the general public. They allow managers to look at the entire Chesapeake region and track problems back to their sources. State and federal agencies can assess progress toward meeting commitments to restore the Bay. The data and supporting documentation can be found on the Data Hub in the CBP Bay Resource Library.

ICPRB staff in Rockville, Maryland, also contribute to the project goals and objectives. They compile certain biological data, develop computer programs to calculate metrics and indexes including the Chessie BIBI, respond to data analysis requests, and participate in CBP workgroups and ad hoc analysis task groups.