A study, conducted in the golden-hued Plum Island estuary and published Wednesday in the journal Nature, is the first to show that marshes may be crumbling from the inside out from a massive overload of nutrients. Scientists conducted a nine-year experiment that involved injecting nitrogen and phosphorus into a 25-acre swath of the marsh on every spring and summer incoming tide. The study has particular relevance in the Northeastern United States, where research shows sea-level rise is occurring faster than global rates.
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