If the improvements in water quality in Narragansett Bay over the last decade are to continue, it will depend in part on what happens in the many rivers and streams around Rhode Island that empty into the Bay.

A years-long initiative along one of those small tributaries in the heart of the capital city is already shaping up to be a model for other places that are trying to prevent oils, chemicals and other contaminants carried by runoff from washing into Rhode Island’s most important body of water.

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