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USACE Civil Works: Jacksonville Harbor Navigation Channel Deepening and Widening, FL MPRSA Section 103 Sediment Characterization and Testing

Jacksonville Harbor is in Duval County, Florida, between Jacksonville and the mouth of the St. Johns River at the Atlantic Ocean.  The harbor provides access to deep-draft vessels using three public marine terminal facilities and one passenger cruise terminal in Jacksonville, Florida.  The Jacksonville Harbor Channel Deepening project is a large civil works project which includes deepening a portion of the channel from an existing 40 feet to 47 feet with 2 feet of over-depth and widening the channel at several locations.  ANAMAR was contracted to conduct sediment evaluations to determine if the proposed new work dredge material is suitable for disposal in the Jacksonville ODMDS.  ANAMAR led the sampling, testing, and reporting efforts to determine that the dredged material is in compliance with MPRSA Section 103.  ANAMAR planned and executed all sampling operations and met strict timelines for all deliverables which was critical to keeping the larger deepening project on schedule.  

Prior to the sampling effort, ANAMAR compiled and reviewed existing environmental data from reports and databases to identify and summarize potential spills and/or contamination that may have affected the sediment proposed for ocean disposal for the Jacksonville Harbor Deepening Project.  Using this information and following procedures established in the SERIM and Green Book, ANAMAR developed a detailed SAP/QAPP.

The St Johns River experiences tidal fluctuations resulting in very strong currents during incoming and outgoing tides; therefore, the sampling team had to plan daily sampling operations during workable currents (i.e., slack tides).  80 substations, 25 dredged material management units (DMMUs), and several site water stations were sampled to characterize the material to be dredged for the deepening project.  Sampling was completed within 4 weeks.  ANAMAR coordinated with several labs to ensure samples were analyzed within holding times and met testing requirements; performed QA/QC on all the sediment and elutriate chemistry, physical, and toxicological data to ensure data quality objectives were met; ran the Water Quality Criteria Mixing Model (STFATE) modeling to document compliance with the ocean dumping criteria; compiled all results into a comprehensive testing report; prepared a Section 103 Sediment Evaluation report for EPA concurrence; and entered all data into the SAGA database. 

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