Many studies have been carried out in the St. Croix River Estuary over the past 100 years or so. In general, they had relatively narrow and project-specific objectives which were not related to measuring long-term change or assessing the environmental health of this ecosystem. This work established historic sampling sites, baseline data, scientific protocols, and mechanisms for measuring the relative health of the estuary on an ongoing annual basis. This was a multi-stage, two-year project designed to determine the current health of the St. Croix Estuary and the ecological trend in the estuary for the last 20 years.

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