The investigations on the quality status of the sediments in the German Baltic Sea coastal waters focused on the natural background as assessment basis. On this basis, the chemical sediment quality can be evaluated. Furthermore, the decision about the relocation of dredged material from federal waterways depends on this assessment. The sediment quality of the German Baltic Sea coastal waters between the Kiel Bay and the Stettin Lagoon has been analyzed in order to obtain guide concentrations of the natural level. Relevant parameters had been selected according to the Helcom Liste of priority harmful substances e.g. metals (Hg, Cd, Cr, Cu, Pb, Ni, Zn and As), PAHs, MHC, PCBs and nutrients. The results show that regional differences exist, so that a regionally differentiated assessment is required. With regard to the removal of dredged material, a hierarchical decision support system for the re-use of that material was developed, including the disposal on land and in water. Ecological and economic conditions have to be compared in this decision making process. This procedure is illustrated at the example of the enlargement of the harbour access in the Wismar Bay
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