EPA is developing water qulaity criteria for estuaries that require knowledge of both total nitrogen and light availability (measured as photsynthetically active radiation, PAR). Through the National Estuarine Research Reserve (NERR) System-Wide Monitoring Program (SWMP), inorganic nutrient concentrations, chlorophyll-a concetration, and a number of hydrographic and water quality parameters are sampled on a monthly basis at 7 sites in the Great Bay system. In addition, these same parameters, as well as bacteria concentrations, are measured at a number of sites in Great Bay and Hampton Harbor through the National Coastal Assessment (NCA) funded through the EPA. This project takes advantage of these existing monitoring activities to collect and analyze for particulate organic nitrogen (PON), dissolved organic nitrogen (DON) and photosynthetically active radiation (PAR) at a up to 10 existing sample sites in the New Hampshire seacoast region. When combined with existing dissolved inorganic nitrogen measurements, PON and DON allow the entire Total Nitrogen (TN) pool to be quantified. PAR measurements provide, for the first time, an estimate of the light availability in the system.
Piscataqua Region Estuaries Partnership
New Hampshire Estuaries Project
Pennock, Jonathan, "2003 Great Bay Organic Nitrogen (PON & DON) and Light Extinction (PAR) Monitoring Program" (2004). PREP Reports & Publications. 285.