The ability to dredge and maintain the waterways of Long Island Sound (LIS) has critical economic implications for the southern New England / New York region. The natural habitats and living resources of LIS that may be affected by dredging are also critical to the region. To protect LIS marine resources, time-of-year restrictions have been incorporated into the best management practices for routine dredging, but these can pose challenges to dredging operations. RPS assessed the time-of-year restrictions that have been permitted for dredging operations within LIS to aid in regulatory decision-making.
Time of Year Restrictions for Dredging Projects in Long Island Sound and its Major Tributaries
Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (CT DEEP)
Most time-of-year restrictions identified in the permits reviewed were customized on a project-by-project basis and designed to protect a variety of marine fish, invertebrates, and avian species. RPS scientists reviewed paper records of permits in LIS and characterized the dredging equipment used, the time-of-year restrictions included in the permit, and the species and life stages that the restrictions were intended to protect. We also evaluated phone interviews with dredging contractors to understand the effects of restrictions from the developer’s standpoint.
RPS provided a detailed analysis and summary of the following: