Thanks so much to those who attended the American Littoral Society's Growing Grassroots panel discussion on Dec. 16. I hope you found the discussion engaging and enlightening.
Watch the embedded recording of the panel (above) or click this link to watch it on the Society's YouTube channel, along with answers to outstanding questions, and action items to get started in your grassroots advocacy journey!
Read on for answers to questions from the webinar, as well as additional resources to aid your advocacy efforts.
By Tim Dillingham, Executive Director of the American Littoral Society
An explosion of people enjoying the water in kayaks, jet skis, paddle boards, tubes or just taking a dip is the result of recent improvements in water quality in the mainstem estuary of the Delaware River in the vicinity of Philadelphia, PA and Camden NJ. This exciting change demonstrates that the combination of actions by the Delaware River Basin Commission, federal, state and local agencies, citizens and clean water utilities to reduce pollution makes a difference! This improvement was celebrated this spring when American Rivers named the Delaware River its National River of the Year for 2020.
In the time following that award, the Coronavirus crisis has changed how we are thinking about getting together and living our lives. We are finding that the outdoors is the place to destress and recharge after all the different challenges that we are facing, from the pandemic and ensuing economic impacts to the movement for black lives and the struggle for racial justice.
For the first time in over 35 years, the American Littoral Society is going virtual with our annual New Year’s Day walks. Although Covid may have put a crimp in this tradition, you can still start the year with a walk in the great outdoors in two different ways.
First, the Society's staff put together a list of their favorite trails local to our offices and their homes on Alltrails.com. Click the first link to explore the list, or the second to search for other trails near you.
Or keep on your best PJ's, pull up a comfy chair, grab a hot cup of cocoa, and tune in to the Northeast Chapter's annual walk from the comfort of home via Facebook Live at 11 a.m. on Friday! Click Interested or Going through the Facebook event and you will be notified when the virtual walk begins.
Climate Change Mitigation: Creating an Inclusive and Responsible Offshore Wind Energy Future in our Ocean
The American Littoral Society recognizes the development of offshore wind as an important component in the fight against climate change by replacing demand for energy production from dirty, polluting fossil fuel sources with clean, renewable energy sources. Development of offshore wind must be responsibly sited, and guided by continuous stakeholder participation.
Governor Murphy has taken bold and swift action to make New Jersey a leader in climate mitigation, in large part, by setting robust renewable energy goals for the development of offshore wind farms to power our communities. The Governor’s plans also smartly required development of an Offshore Wind Strategic Plan (OWSP) by the NJ Board of Public Utilities (BPU) as a roadmap to guide New Jersey to meet the statewide goal of 7500 Megawatts of energy coming from offshore wind by 2035.
In making New Jersey’s offshore wind goal a reality, wind energy projects will likely span hundreds of thousands of acres on leased ocean bottom off New Jersey’s coast, with the energy they produce cabled back to our shores. In fact, we already know that close to 100 wind turbines and 2 main cable routes will be built within the next couple of years just to meet the state’s first target for producing 1100 Megawatts of wind energy (Ocean Wind LLC).
Funding will help Fortescue Beach, located in Downe Township, NJ, to be better prepared for future extreme weather events
Work to restore Fortescue Beach began in 2015.
Downe Township, NJ, September 16, 2020 – Today, the American Littoral Society announced that it has received a $500,000 grant to improve horseshoe crab and shorebird habitat at South Jersey’s Fortescue Beach, while also making the shore more resistant to coastal storms and sea level rise.
The grant comes from the Resilient Communities Program, a collaboration between Wells Fargo and the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) that aims to help communities better prepare for and respond to climate-related natural disasters by investing in green infrastructure. The Resilient Communities grant unlocks an additional $522,440 in matching funds from external sources for a total conservation impact of $1,022,440.
The project will improve the resiliency of 0.34 linear miles (5.8 acres) of important horseshoe crab spawning and red knot foraging beach habitat in Downe Township, NJ by creating up to 1,200 linear feet of hybrid living reef breakwaters that will minimize sand loss during winter storms. The project will engage eight local partners, 250 volunteers and reach 2,500 people through our existing outreach programs, which include horseshoe crab tagging and re-sighting.
American Littoral Society Awarded $4.9 million Grant for Work To Restore and Protect the Mouth of the Maurice River
The project is a partnership between the Littoral Society, Wildlife Restoration Partnerships, and Stockton University, with support from the US Fish and Wildlife Service and the NJ Department of Environmental Protection, Division of Fish and Wildlife.
Basket Flat at the mouth of the Maurice River in southwestern New Jersey.
WASHINGTON, D.C., Nov. 17, 2020 – The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) and National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) today announced more than $37 million in new grants from the National Coastal Resilience Fund (NCRF) that will support coastal resilience projects in 25 states and U.S. territories. The 46 grants announced today will generate $55 million in matching contributions for a total conservation impact of $92 million.
The NCRF grants will contribute to the restoration or enhancement of natural features such as coastal marshes and wetlands, dune and beach systems, oyster and coral reefs, mangroves, forests, coastal rivers and barrier islands. These natural buffers can help reduce the impacts of storms, rising sea levels and other extreme events on nearby communities and habitats.
The American Littoral Society, a membership-based coastal conservation organization headquartered in Highlands, New Jersey, was awarded $4.9 million for its proposed work Restoring Ecologically Beneficial and Resilient Infrastructure at the Mouth of Maurice River (NJ).
Man, do we need something to celebrate.
No one wants to read a recitation of the challenges we have faced during the past year as Americans and people who care about the coast, much less those burdens unique to our own lives and paths.
So, as we head into the shortest days of the year, which will bring to many the cold winds of winter, lets focus on celebration.
Let’s celebrate the coast. Let’s celebrate the salt life.
According to a Giving USA 2019 report, only 3% of philanthropic giving across income levels in the United States, goes to the environment and that is up from previous years. As coronavirus persists, sea levels continue to rise, while water and air pollution levels increase. Your support is integral to the health of our local waterways and communities!
The American Littoral Society is participating in #GivingTuesday today because we need your support. Today we celebrate the mission of promoting the study and conservation of marine life and habitat, protecting the coast from harm, and empowering others to do the same; and honor all the work that would not be possible without supporters like YOU. Now more than ever the coast, your coast, needs your help.
A poster seen at the 2017 People's Climate March in Washington DC.
“Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is ever going to get better. It's not.”
~ The Lorax, Dr. Suess
When I think of an advocate, I often think of the Lorax, the iconic conservation figure created by Dr. Suess. The Lorax spoke for the trees, which had no tongues.
The lesson of the Lorax was that there are things that must be cared for, resources that need to be stewarded. Often we need someone to remind us what we have or what may be lost. We need someone to speak out on behalf of the things that can’t speak for themselves – whether trees or horseshoe crabs.
Without an advocate we might not even hear about important things until they are gone.
However, what may be the saddest aspect of the Lorax is that there was just one, fighting a lonely battle.
Tuesday, October 27
10 - 11:30 a.m.
Click Link To Register
The objective of the Clean Water Act is to maintain the chemical, physical, and biological integrity of our Nation’s waters*. What exactly does that look like for the Delaware River Basin?
Join the River Network and partners for a webinar to learn about water quality standards and how the chemical, physical, and biological parameters compare across the four Basin states and the Delaware River Basin Commission (DRBC).
Presenters include Dr. Ron MacGillivray of DRBC, Erin Stretz of The Watershed Institute, Adam Griggs of River Network, and Ellen Kohler of University of Maryland’s Water Finance Center.