Report Cards

The NOAA Chesapeake Bay Office collaborates with the Integration and Application Network at the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science on science communications products as part of the EcoCheck partnership. These projects, designed to support management of the Bay by providing geographically detailed assessments and forecasts, include an annual "report card", released each April, detailing the Bay's health. The Chesapeake Bay Report Card is a detailed annual assessment that rates 15 regions in the Bay on six indicators—water quality, chlorophyll-a, dissolved oxygen, benthic community, aquatic grasses, and phytoplankton community—to develop water-quality and biotic indices for each region. This leads to the overall Bay Health Index for the year.

EcoCheck also works with community groups around the Chesapeake to help them develop report cards specifically for their local watershed.