Friday, January 30, 2015

Bloede's Dam to be Demolished

While scrolling through Twitter I saw a post about the proposed Bloede's Dam demolition.  Bloede's Dam is in the Patapsco River Valley State Park.  The state plans to demolish the dam and was holding an information session at Arbutus Library.

I happened to be around that area, so I made it a plan to stop by and find out what they have to say.  The dam was constructed about 100 years ago and was a small submerged hydro-electric dam.  The obvious problem with dams is that there is a massive silt build-up behind it and fish are unable to migrate upstream to spawn.

The removal of the dam will start with the removal of trees around the area that will become unstable as the dam is removed and water starts to flow freely downstream.  There are estimates that there could be 7 ft sediment deposits along different parts of the river.  By removing the trees beforehand, they won't fall and become hazards.

There are two sewer lines that need to be moved and this will take a lot of time.  Once this has been completed, then the actual dam and fish ladder removal will begin.  There are no plans to remove the sediment as that will require the construction of an access road and 24 operations with a continuous flow of dump trucks for an extended period of time.  Additionally, this method will extend the time frame of the project and obviously increase the cost.

As far as the fish are concerned, the indigenous fish in the immediate area will be significantly impacted as their habitat is expected to be quickly buried in silt and sediment. Other fish, however, will now be able swim farther upstream.  These include American eels and shad.

I found the information be fascinating.  By fascinating, I mean informative and interesting.  Yes, the average person would care less about this event.  Now you know all about it.

For more information, you can go here.

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