GLOUCESTER POINT, Va. (WJZ) — Dead-zone conditions in the Chesapeake Bay were “considerably less” in 2020 than in previous years, thanks in part to cool temperatures, a new report concluded.

The annual report from the Virginia Institute of Marine Science said a number of factors contributed to the reduced low-oxygen “hypoxic” conditions, including lower precipitation and nutrient runoff levels. Low oxygen levels can cause dead zones.

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According to the report, dead-zone conditions peaked on July 22 due to weak winds and high temperatures, but those conditions were cut by more than half following Hurricane Isaias moving across the region.

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Overall dead-zone conditions were the lowest in five years in 2020, the report found.

CBS Baltimore Staff