BALTIMORE (AP) — Maryland Attorney General Doug Gansler says his annual environmental audit has found the need for enhanced enforcement of pollution laws.

Gansler says pollution related to urban and residential growth is also a concern and the audit highlighted the benefits of increasing public awareness of environmental issues.

The audit was the fifth for Gansler, who visits different areas each year. The 2012 audit covers the Youghiogheny River and Deep Creek Lake in western Maryland, the state’s coastal bays, and the watersheds of the Wye and Savage rivers and the Potomac’s North Branch.

Concerns found that are more specific to each area include high bacteria counts that restrict shellfish harvesting, high mercury levels in lake fish and potential problems from proposed hydraulic fracturing for natural gas in western Maryland.

(Copyright 2013 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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