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June 1, 2022

Bay Journal — by Timothy Wheeler — June 1, 2022 Updated

"Making the struggle to restore the Chesapeake Bay even tougher, watershed states have been clearing more forest for development and paving over more landscape than previously believed, new data show.

A recently released analysis of high-resolution aerial imagery taken four years apart indicates the watershed has been losing more than 20,000 acres per year of pollution-fighting forest to development and adding more than 12,000 acres annually of runoff-inducing pavement and buildings.

Those are just two of the more notable findings in a federally funded project to map land cover and land use change across the Bay watershed using aerial imagery, which has a resolution that is 30 times higher than the satellite imagery previously used for this purpose. The project was conducted by the nonprofit Chesapeake Conservancy in collaboration with the U.S. Geological Survey, University of Vermont and federal-state Chesapeake Bay Program. . ."