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Title: Noyes Cut, Satilla River Basin, Georgia : Final Integrated Feasibility Study and Environmental Assessment : Section 1135 - Project, Modifications for Improvement of the Environment
Authors: United States. Army. Corps of Engineers. Savannah District
Keywords: Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway
Satilla River (Ga.)
Environmental protection
Environmental management
Publisher: United States. Army. Corps of Engineers. Savannah District.
Abstract: The non-Federal sponsors, Georgia Department of Natural Resources and the Satilla Riverkeeper, in collaboration with Dover Bluff residents, requested that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers investigate under Section 1135 the best way to restore the Satilla River estuary system. In 1933, the USACE widened and deepened Noyes Cut as part of the Inland Waterway. In 1940, USACE constructed the Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway from Umbrella Creek through the lower reach of Dover Creek. In total, eight man-made cuts account for the degraded ecosystem in the study area. Those cuts changed the water circulation patterns in the estuary, altering patterns of tidal exchange; disrupting gradual salinity gradients from the headwaters to the mouth of the creeks; and limiting access to headwaters for estuarine species due to channel sedimentation. The estuarine species historically found in Dover and Umbrella Creeks include shrimp (white and brown), river herring, American shad, blue crabs, eastern oyster, and striped bass. All of these species would benefit from the restoration of tidal flows, water depths, and salinity gradients in the area. Shad, herring, and striped bass require freshwater for spawning, while blue crabs, oysters, and shrimp require brackish water for successful reproduction. To improve the quality of the existing aquatic habitat for resident species and increase connectivity for migratory species in the upper reaches of the Dover and Umbrella Creek watersheds, the study team recommends closing cuts to restore historic flow patterns in the watershed. The study team assessed, evaluated, and compared the following final array of action alternatives: closing Noyes Cut alone; closing Dynamite Cut and Old River Run (ORR); and closing Noyes Cut, Dynamite Cut, and ORR. The team compared the cost effectiveness of the ecosystem benefits for each alternative. The study team identified two cost effective alternatives: Alternative 6 (closing Dynamite Cut and ORR) and Alternative 7 (closing Noyes Cut, Dynamite Cut, and ORR). The team identified Alternative 7 as the Recommended Plan because it would provide the greatest amount of ecosystem restoration benefits and the best ecosystem for migratory fish spawning habitat.
Description: Feasibility Study and Environmental Assessment
Rights: Approved for Public Release; Distribution is Unlimited
Appears in Collections:Environmental Documents

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