Littoral Society volunteers work on marsh restoration in Jamaica Bay.
The American Littoral Society joins Jamaica Bay-Rockaway Parks Conservancy, the Jamaica Bay Ecowatchers, and partners in thanking U.S. Senators Charles Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand, their staffs, and participating federal agencies, for their advocacy on behalf of the Jamaica Bay Stony Creek Marsh Restoration, and the entire Hudson Raritan Estuary Project, securing much needed design and construction funding for this important restoration project.
This latest batch of funding, secured in two major bipartisan pieces of legislation—the recently passed 2022 Omnibus, and the infrastructure bill—brought in $27.2 million to the Hudson Raritan Estuary Project, which includes other sites in the New York region, with $18.91 million directly for the Jamaica Bay Stony Creek Marsh Restoration project. This funding covers both the design phase and full federal construction costs.
Stony Creek Marsh is an important marsh island in Jamaica Bay that has been degraded and fragmented over time. Once completed, this project will restore over 50 acres of marsh in the bay, creating important habitat and helping clean our waterways, and will provide protection to local communities from extreme weather.
Jamaica Bay is home to important salt marshes that provide habitat for wildlife, clean our waterways, and protect shoreline communities from extreme weather. According to the US Army Corps of Engineers, since 1924, nearly 2,000 acres of Jamaica Bay's marsh islands have been lost. Left alone, the marshes could vanish by the year 2025, destroying wildlife habitat and threatening the bay's shorelines.
However, the Littoral Society and partners have been working to save and restore Jamaica Bay's wetlands for the last decade, through coordinated community marsh grass planting events on two of Jamaica Bay's marsh island restoration areas (Ruler's Bar and Blackwall Marsh islands).
On its own, the Society's Northeast Chapter has brought together volunteers to plant more than 500,000 culms of marsh grass. Those efforts were made possible through support from partners and funding from the city, New York state, and the federal government.
As a long-time friend of Jamaica Bay, Sen. Schumer, along with Sen. Gillibrand, championed the new Jamaica Bay restoration funding by writing a letter to the Office of Management and Budget calling for full federal support to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for the Stony Creek Marsh project.
This critical funding will support restoration of Jamaica Bay's important ecosystems and protect Southern Brooklyn and Southern Queens from extreme weather events. The Stony Creek Marsh restoration project builds on prior investments by the city, state, and federal government to restore and clean the bay – efforts first led by the coastal communities of Jamaica Bay and championed by Sen. Schumer and other elected officials.
Learn more about this historic level of funding.