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Section 103 Sediment Evaluation, Charleston Lower Harbor and Entrance Channel, Charleston, South Carolina

The Charleston Harbor Federal Navigation Channel is located in Charleston Harbor, South Carolina.  Charleston Harbor is a tidal estuary fed by the Ashley, Cooper, and Wando Rivers and covers an area of approximately 14 square miles.  The entrance to the harbor is protected by two granite and rubble mound jetties, 2900 feet apart, which extend from Sullivan’s Island to the north and Morris Island to the south. 

The existing federal navigational channel extends from the 47-foot ocean contour through the jetties to the North Charleston Terminal on the Cooper River, a distance of 26.97 miles.  An additional 2.08-mile 45-foot channel extends up the Wando River to the Wando Welch Terminal belonging to South Carolina State Ports Authority.  The federal channel varies in width from 400 feet in Town Creek and Wando River to 1000 feet in the entrance channel, Fort Sumter Range.

ANAMAR was contracted by USACE to perform sampling activities for a Section 103 sediment evaluation.  The purpose of this project was to collect and analyze sediment, site water, and elutriate samples from specified project locations to determine the suitability of the sediment for ocean disposal in the Charleston Harbor ODMDS as required under the Marine Protection, Research, and Sanctuaries Act of 1972 (MPRSA) (Public Law 92-532).  Maintenance dredging within the Charleston Harbor project is required to provide unrestricted navigation for ocean-going vessels calling upon the Port of Charleston. 

Based on the average expected annual dredging volumes, the project area was divided into several dredging units.  ANAMAR coordinated and directed operations for this project and worked closely with USACE to design sampling and analysis schemes, perform sample collection, subcontract laboratory analyses, and prepare final report deliverables.  ANAMAR reviewed all data and produced a report summarizing the results of the physical, chemical, and toxicological analyses of sediment, elutriate, water, and tissue samples of the proposed dredge material collected from the project area. 

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