The Hudson-Raritan estuary used to be heavily polluted by trash, sewage, and runoff from agriculture and industry. Today, pollution in the estuary and its tributaries (including the Gowanus Canal in Brooklyn, New York) are tightly restricted. Garbage barges keep the trash to a minimum.

Photograph by John Putnam, MyShot
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estuary
estuary Encyclopedic Entry

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An estuary is an area where a freshwater river or stream meets the ocean. When freshwater and seawater combine, the water becomes brackish, or slightly salty.