Environmental Protection Agency Narragansett Bay Commission University of Rhode Island Office of Marine Programs

Estuarine Science

pH

1. What is pH?
2. How do we measure pH?
3. What is the pH of Narragansett Bay?
4. What can we learn about Narragansett Bay by measuring pH?


3. What is the pH of Narragansett Bay?

Narragansett Bay surface water usually has a pH between 7.8 and 8.3. However, the pH can be higher during large phytoplankton blooms. Bottom water pH is usually between 7.4 and 8.1. During times of hypoxic or anoxic conditions, the pH can be much lower. When the pH is outside the normal range, many organisms in the Bay may have trouble surviving.

The pH of Narragansett Bay can change rapidly when there are rain events or during large phytoplankton blooms. The input of human pollution into the Bay can also change the pH. Pollutants may have an effect in just one local place or affect a large part of the estuary.


1. What is pH?
2. How do we measure pH?
3. What is the pH of Narragansett Bay?
4. What can we learn about Narragansett Bay by measuring pH?

       


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