MD Attorney General Looks At Health Of Wicomico River - 47 ABC - Delmarva's Choice

MD Attorney General Looks At Health Of Wicomico River

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SALISBURY, Md. - For an area like Delmarva, which thrives on agriculture and fishing, the health of the water is extremely important.

Maryland's Attorney General was out in Salisbury Monday to look at the health of the Wicomico River.

On a boat ride on the Wicomico River, Maryland Attorney General Doug Gansler met with environmental leaders to look at the health of the waterway.

"What are the issues here?" says Gansler.

The trip is part of an ongoing trip assessing the quality of the state's waterways.

According to the Maryland Attorney General, it's an opportunity to see, first hand, the problems facing Maryland's local communities.

"The amount of cigarette butts that are thrown on the ground in Salisbury, and around that end up in the tributaries and the water, and that's something, for example, that's incredibly preventable," says the Gansler.

But all of issues aren't as easily seen.  Experts say, when it comes to the health of a river like the Wicomico, looks can be deceiving.  Just because it seems clear, doesn't mean it's clean.

"The visual stuff has been cleaned up, and that's good, but meanwhile, we put a lot more fertilizer on the land, we have a lot more energy burning," and that's what Tom Horton, an environmental studies professor at Salisbury University, believes has contributed to a decline in the health of the waterway since he was younger.

Water quality in The Wicomico River, and the Chesapeake Bay has improved, going from a D+ rating in 2011 to a C in 2012, but Horton believes it'd be hard to keep climbing.

"You can reduce people's environmental impact, but can you reduce it by 50 percent?"

Attorney General Gansler later met with members of local environmental groups to hear more of their concerns.

As the state's Attorney General -- Gansler says his role is to help the groups advocate for.

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