The Damietta Harbor is situated near the eastern branch of the River Nile estuary, 250 km east of Alexandria. Marine eutrophication is mainly an inshore problem that affects lagoons, harbors, estuaries and coastal areas adjacent to river mouths. Although the main body of the Mediterranean Sea as a whole is not yet seriously threatened by eutrophication, areas of pronounced eutrophication are expanding in the Mediterranean. The main objective of the study is to characterize water, soil and sediment that will be dredged to determine their suitability for placement in either upland, an offshore disposal site, or at an existing beach for re-nourishment, and to observe the effect of the harbor on surface water pollution of the Mediterranean Sea. The dredging operations in Damietta Port sediment, soil and water investigations were conducted to understand the possible disposal or re-use considerations. The following samples were investigated:
- Offshore stations representing existing, proposed and reference stations,
- Sediment cores within the port and approach channel,
- Sediment grabs within the port and approach channel, and
- Soil borings from terminal basin.
Also, the water quality of different basins inside the harbor and in the marine waters at the mouth of the harbor was investigated. Water samples were analyzed for parameters indicating the chemical and biological quality of the harbor environment. In general, the water, soil, and sediment quality in the study area were within the permissible levels for physical-chemical parameters of marine water, although some metals were considerably higher than the background levels. In total, the off shore qualities were within the limits in all locations that are not hazardous to the Mediterranean Sea environment.
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