The Tampa Bay Estuary Program, in coordination with the Tampa Bay Nitrogen Management Consortium and TBEP Technical Advisory Committee, has developed estuarine numeric nutrient criteria for the Tampa Bay estuary. Currently, state and federal efforts are underway to develop statewide numeric nutrient criteria for all Florida waters. The attached documents demonstrate that the Tampa Bay nitrogen management strategy, developed and implemented by the TBEP and Tampa Bay Nitrogen Management Consortium since 1996, provide the foundation for continued water quality protection, as it relates to nutrients, in the Tampa Bay estuary. As such, the protective numeric nutrient criteria for the Tampa Bay estuary are expressed as the nitrogen delivery ratio (tons of TN per million cubic meters of freshwater delivered) to each bay segment in Tampa Bay. These values are presented in the table below.

TBEP estuarine numeric nutrient criteria expressed as Nitrogen Delivery Ratio (tons TN per million m3 hydrologic load) based on 1992-1994 conditions.
Segment Nitrogen Delivery Ratio (tons TN/million m3)
Old Tampa Bay 1.08
Hillsborough Bay 1.62
Middle Tampa Bay 1.24
Lower Tampa Bay 0.97
Boca Ciega Bay North 1.54
Boca Ciega Bay South 0.97
Terra Ceia Bay 1.10
Manatee River 1.80

Additional information and documents on the development of these criteria are summarized in the attached PDFs below. The following links also provide information on TBEP developed goals and targets established in the mid-1990s.