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glossary of the great lakespage
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Nation's Waters
National Ambient Air Quality Standards NAAQS
National Biological Service NBS
National Environmental Policy Act NEPA
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration NOAA
National Park Service NPS
National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System NPDES
National Priorities List NPL
National Sea Grant College Program NSGCP
Nationwide Permit NWP
Natural Resources Conservation Service NRCS
Natural Resources Research Institute NRRI
Naturalized Species
Navigable Waters
Neurotoxin
Nitrogen Oxides NOx
No Net Loss
No Observable Effect Concentration NOEC
Non-Chemical Stressors
Non-Indigenous Aquatic Nuisance Prevention and Control Act of 1990
Non-Indigenous Species
Nonpoint Source
Nonpoint Source Pollution NPS
North Shore Management Board NSMB
North Shore Management Plan NSMP
Northeast Minnesota Waste Exchange NMWE
Northeastern Minnesota Environmental and Economic Council NEMEEC
Nutrients

Nation's Waters
See Waters of the United States.

National Ambient Air Quality Standards NAAQS
Standards that EPA sets under the Clean Air Act to protect public health with an adequate margin of safety (primary standards) and to protect the environment (secondary standards). These standards apply to sources that emit pollutants into the atmosphere. Related Programs - Clean Air Act

National Biological Service NBS
A federal bureau within the U.S. Department of the Interior. The mission of NBS is "to provide, with others, the scientific understanding and technologies needed to manage the Nation's biological resources."

National Environmental Policy Act NEPA
A federal law passed in 1990 that promotes efforts to prevent or eliminate damage to the environment and biosphere and stimulates the health and welfare of people. It established a Council on Environmental Quality. It is comprised of two Titles: Title I - Declaration of National Environmental Policy; Title II - Council on Environmental Quality (42 U.S.C. 4321-4347).

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration NOAA
A federal agency, NOAA's mandate is to conserve and manage wisely the nation's coastal and marine resources, and describe and predict changes in the Earth's environment to ensure sustainable economic opportunities. NOAA administers the National Sea Grant College Program, National Underseas Research Program, National Marine Fisheries Service, National Coastal Resources Research and Development Institute, National Weather Service, and others.

National Park Service NPS
An agency of the U.S. Department of the Interior that manages the national park system. Active participant in the Binational Program.

National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System NPDES
Federal regulations that constitute the national program for issuing, modifying, revoking, re-issuing, terminating, monitoring, and enforcing permits and enforcing pretreatment requirements for point source discharges to surface waters under the Clean Water Act, Section 402. Related Programs - Clean Water Act, 40 CFR

National Priorities List NPL
A list of inactive, hazardous waste sites designated under Superfund as needing long-term remedial actions. Currently, there are about 1,200 sites on the NPL. Related Programs - Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act

National Sea Grant College Program NSGCP
A nation-wide partnership with public and private sectors combining research, education, and technology transfer for public service. A national network of universities meeting changing environmental and economic needs of people, industry, and government in coastal, ocean, and Great Lakes States. Administered by National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. See also Minnesota Sea Grant. Related Programs - National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

Nationwide Permit NWP
A type of general permit issued by the Army Corps of Engineers allowing certain activities to take place in the Waters of the U.S. If certain conditions are met, the specified activities can take place without the need for an individual or regional permit. Related Programs - Section 404, 33 CFR

Natural Resources Conservation Service NRCS
A federal agency within the United States Department of Agriculture that provides technical assistance to land users in cooperation with other federal, state, and local agencies in carrying out a variety of natural resources-related programs designed to promote protection and wise use of these resources on private lands. Formerly the Soil Conservation Service.

Natural Resources Research Institute NRRI
A University of Minnesota research institute established in 1983 by the Minnesota legislature to foster economic development of Minnesota's natural resources in an environmentally-sound manner and promote private sector employment. See also Center for Water and the Environment. Related Programs - University of Minnesota

Naturalized Species
An intentionally or unintentionally introduced species that has adapted to and reproduces successfully in its new environment. Some Great Lakes examples include the rainbow smelt, the alewife, and some salmon and trout species.

Navigable Waters
Navigable waters of the United States are waters subject to the ebb and flow of the tide and/or used to transport interstate or foreign commerce. A determination of navigability, once made, applies over the entire surface of the waterbody, and is not changed by later actions or events which impede or destroy navigable capacity. Also referred to as Waters of the U.S. Related Programs - 33 CFR

Neurotoxin
A substance that is known or suspected to be poisonous to nerve tissue.

Nitrogen Oxides NOx
Pollutants that can be a component of smog and also can contribute to acid rain. One of the criteria pollutants regulated by the 1990 Clean Air Act Amendments. Sources include automobiles and industrial point sources.

No Net Loss
A federal and Minnesota state policy to achieve no overall net loss of the nation's remaining wetlands base as defined by acreage and function and to restore and create wetlands where feasible, to increase the quality and quantity of the nation's wetland resource base. Related Programs - Wetland Conservation Act, Section 404.

No Observable Effect Concentration NOEC
For toxic substances, it is the highest tested concentration at which no adverse effects are observed in an aquatic organism at a specific time of observation.

Non-Chemical Stressors
Physical and biological factors that can impact water quality or ecosystem health. Examples include, heat, sediment, non-indigenous species.

Non-Indigenous Aquatic Nuisance Prevention and Control Act of 1990
A federal law to prevent the unintentional introduction and dispersal of non-indigenous species into the waters of the U.S. The act mandates the establishment of: a national ballast water control program; the Aquatic Nuisance Species Task Force; initial research funding; technical assistance and education for federal and state agencies; state management plans; and grant programs to prevent, monitor, and control the spread of zebra mussels and other exotic species. It also provides for the establishment of regulations that control the introduction of and dispersal of these organisms. See also aquatic nuisance species.

Non-Indigenous Species
Those species found beyond their natural ranges or natural zone of potential dispersal. Also referred to as exotic species. See also aquatic nuisance species.

Nonpoint Source
See nonpoint source pollution.

Nonpoint Source Pollution NPS
Pollution where the sources cannot be traced to a single, distinct, identifiable point. Nonpoint source pollution can come from atmospheric deposition, erosion, and runoff from parking lots, farms, and streets.

North Shore Management Board NSMB
A Minnesota joint powers board that represents local governments in decisions about coastline management on Minnesota's North Shore. Implements the North Shore Management Plan.

North Shore Management Plan NSMP
A Minnesota plan for the environmental protection and orderly growth of the North Shore of Lake Superior developed by the residents of the area. Consists of several planning elements, each dealing with an area needing special attention such as shoreland management, harbors of refuge, transportation, recreation, tourism, and economic development.

Northeast Minnesota Waste Exchange NMWE
A local program administered by the Western Lake Superior Sanitary District, this organization recycles household waste such as paint. Its primary effort is aimed at getting businesses that have unwanted products in touch with potential users of those products. Related Programs - Western Lake Superior Sanitary District

Northeastern Minnesota Environmental and Economic Council NEMEEC
An organization of northeastern Minnesota citizens formed in the 1970's in response to the potential for Minnesota's enrollment in the federal Coastal Zone Management Program. NEMEEC's approach is to insure that CZM does not ignore or hamper economic development.

Nutrients
Elements or compounds essential as raw materials for organism growth and development, such as carbon, nitrogen, and phosphorus.

 

 

 

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