Beneficial Reuse of Dredged Sediment

Approximately 3-6 million cubic yards of sediment must be dredged to maintain safe navigation in and around San Francisco Bay each year. These sediments (“dredged spoils” or “dredged material”); from federal navigation channels, ports, refineries, marinas, etc.; have generally been placed at designated open-water disposal sites within the Bay and in the ocean. A great alternative to disposal is to “beneficially reuse” dredged sediment. One of the first projects to incorporate beneficial reuse was the restoration of the 348-acre Sonoma Baylands, just north of Bel Marin Keys. At both the Sonoma Baylands and the Hamilton airfield, the Army Corps and the Conservancy worked together to raise the elevation of subsided lands to create tidal marsh. Maximizing beneficial reuse of dredged sediment is one of the goals of the Long Term Management Strategy for Dredged Material in San Francisco Bay (LTMS), a joint initiative of federal and state government that is involved in dredging and dredged material disposal.

Dredging the Port of Oakland

Dredging the Port of Oakland.

Transporting Dredged Sediment

Offloading vessel used to transport dredged sediment from scows to the restoration site.

Slurry Pumped through Pipeline

Dredged sediment slurry was pumped via a pipeline from the offloader to the site.

Slurry Delivered by Pipe

Dredged sediment slurry discharged at site to raise elevation.

Beneficial Reuse at Hamilton wetlands – Saving the Bay documentary KQED.