Assessing the impacts of the Oyster Creek Nuclear Generating Station and its Closure on Gelatinous Zooplankton and Planktonic Community Structure



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Trenton, N.J. : Department of Environmental Protection, Division of Science and Research


For the last decade we have been monitoring and investigating the gelatinous zooplankton community in Barnegat Bay, New Jersey. During this time frame, Barnegat Bay was severely impacted by Superstorm Sandy, which directly impacted the density of the top predator the Bay Nettle (Chrysaora chesapeakei), allowing a more diverse community of gelatinous zooplankton species to flourish after the storm. In addition, the operation of the Oyster Creek Nuclear Generating Station (OCNGS) has put significant stresses on the health of Barnegat Bay for over 50 years through direct destruction of planktonic organisms, redirection of water flow used in cooling the plant, and a chronic thermal stress. This research looked at determining the changes associated with the closure of the plant on the zooplankton community to assess whether the closure resulted in improved ecological conditions to support the recovery of Barnegat Bay after this chronic stress.



New Jersey, Oyster Creek Nuclear Generating Station (N.J.), Zooplankton, Plankton



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