Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Floatable Trash

Floatable Trash

April 1, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

While working my way through obtaining a marine science degree, I was lucky enough to be taken on as a vet tech at an animal hospital. It was in Mamaroneck, a lovely town in Westchester with a pretty little harbor on the Long Island Sound. I was struck at the time by how often we […]

How Does Your Raingarden Grow?

How Does Your Raingarden Grow?

March 7, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

. Created as a way to mimic the natural water retention areas that existed before an area was developed, raingardens have grown in size and popularity over the last decade, expanding to both residential use as well as in the commercial building industry. Rusty Schmidt, co-author of The Blue Thumb Guide to Raingardens, is a […]

What’s Your Water Footprint?

What’s Your Water Footprint?

February 1, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

Long Island is unique in many ways; there’s no exception when it comes to our water supply. Unlike the freshwater steered from upstate to New York City via extensive pipes and aqueducts, Long Islanders get 100 percent of our drinking water from under our feet. We have a system of underground aquifers (water-bearing rocks) which […]

Be Careful What You Flush

Be Careful What You Flush

December 7, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

Wet wipes, long used for baby care, have grown increasingly popular with adults in recent years. Marketing of flushable wipes as a cleaner, fresher option than dry toilet paper alone has resonated with consumers. According to the Association of the Nonwoven Fabrics Industry, pre-moistened wipes are currently a $6 billion-a-year industry, and growing. The product’s […]

It’s Time to Ban Microbeads

It’s Time to Ban Microbeads

October 1, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

.   When we brush our teeth in the mornings and wash our faces at night, most of us don’t consider these acts to be harmful in any way. But for many (myself included), the toothpaste, soaps, and facial washes we’ve had in our homes contain tiny plastic microbeads that are leeching into our water […]

Overwhelming the Water

Overwhelming the Water

September 1, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

  The gentle lapping of the water against the shoreline is a sound many Long Islanders cherish. Some pay exorbitant amounts of money to live where they may hear it as they wake up in the morning; others dream of doing so. Long Islanders feel spiritually connected to water and bound by it physically. Few […]

Blue-Green Harmful Algal Blooms

Blue-Green Harmful Algal Blooms

August 1, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

.   Summer’s heat creates an ideal condition for blue-green algal blooms (cyanobacteria) to form in freshwater lakes and ponds across Long Island. These blooms are a natural part of fresh water ecosystems, and can become massive under the right conditions of sunlight, temperature, and nutrient concentrations. They discolor the water and leave scum and […]

Strong Storms, Weak Coasts

Strong Storms, Weak Coasts

July 1, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

  Carol. Donna. Gloria. Bob. Irene. Sandy. The names are part of our history. Since the 1930s, Long Island’s storm vulnerability has been known, yet little was done until 2011 when Irene, a relatively small hurricane, hit the region. When Sandy struck the following year, a sense of immediacy for storm preparedness resonated with policymakers. […]

Blue Water, Green Boat: Back to the Bays

Blue Water, Green Boat: Back to the Bays

June 1, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

. This year marks the 30th anniversary of Cornell Cooperative Extension of Suffolk County’s (CCE) Marine Program. The celebration’s focus is on connecting residents and visitors to Long Island’s bays and showing the many ways to enjoy our beautiful marine environment. The newly-launched Back to the Bays initiative and the 30 Ways to Give Back […]

Wardrobe to Water Pollution

Wardrobe to Water Pollution

May 1, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

Plastic waste in our waterways can be quite an eyesore. Bags and containers litter shorelines, clog streams and rivers, and form floating trash heaps in the middle of the ocean, imposing harmful effects on the environment and resulting in often deadly consequences to marine life. Additionally, there are lesser known and potentially more pervasive plastic […]

A Cleaner and Clearer Moriches Bay

A Cleaner and Clearer Moriches Bay

April 1, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

When Aram Terchunian, founder of First Coastal, an environmental services company, approached the Westhampton Dunes Barrier Beach Preservation Association in 2012 with the idea of bringing the community together to care for Moriches Bay and improve its water quality, they jointly created the Moriches Bay Project®. While the project’s creators were enthusiastic, we could not […]

Greater Resilience along the Great South Bay

Greater Resilience along the Great South Bay

March 1, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

Long Island was devastated by Superstorm Sandy in October 2012 as storm surges surpassed record highs for the region. This monstrous storm caused $6.7 billion in property damage on Long Island’s waterfront and displaced many residents from their homes for prolonged periods of time. With sea levels rising and the potential for more frequent and […]

The Color of Sand

The Color of Sand

February 1, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

The shores of the Bahamas are tinted pink with bits of coral. Shale makes the beaches of Shelter Cove in California a stark shade of grey. Hawaiian sands get their many vibrant hues courtesy of volcanic lava. The captivating bi-colored beaches of Fire Island, New York are made of quartz and feldspar. Within the finest, […]

Surprise, it’s Seahorses!

Surprise, it’s Seahorses!

January 1, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

. Who doesn’t love the seahorse? Images of seahorses are often found cascading across bed linens and beach towels, and on all sorts of coastal-themed knick-knacks (I happen to have a beautiful set of seahorse coffee mugs). However, did you know that in addition to seahorses showing up on housewares and being featured in artwork, […]

Preventing Future Disasters

Preventing Future Disasters

November 20, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

Superstorm Sandy was the stuff of nightmares — swaths of our region plunged into prolonged darkness, subway stations and roads submerged, and shoreline structures pushed around like toys. Yet the scariest thing about Sandy may be that it could have been worse. Lots of people said that we needed to be better prepared and stronger […]

Seeding Our Waters

Seeding Our Waters

October 1, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

In the fall, many land-based agricultural growing operations prepare for harvest.  On the water, the timing is right for a special aquaculture-based planting operation.  Hundreds of thousands of baby clams and oysters will soon be sent off from their hatchery at Cornell Cooperative Extension’s Suffolk County Marine Environmental Learning Center in Southold (SCMELC), to seed […]

Don’t Medicate Our Waters

Don’t Medicate Our Waters

September 1, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

Perhaps your doctor changed your prescription, or you didn’t need to finish a prescription, and now there’s a half-filled bottle of pills left over. If you’re like most people, that bottle now joins a collection of other unused prescription drugs in your medicine chest, taking up space until you decide to dispose of them.  But […]

The Growing Plastic Pollution Problem in our Waters

The Growing Plastic Pollution Problem in our Waters

August 1, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

It may surprise you to know that there is now more plastic than plankton swirling in our oceans. Plastic pollution from throwaway plastic bags, bottles, and bottle caps have become all too common on beaches, rivers, harbors, bays, and open waters. When you consider that the global annual plastic production has grown from 1.9 million […]

Be Wise When You Fertilize!

Be Wise When You Fertilize!

July 1, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

We fertilize our lawns to enjoy thick, lush green grass. However, excessive and improper fertilizing also promotes thick, lush algae growth in our local waterways. Too much nitrogen — the main ingredient in lawn fertilizers — is the cause of the excessive algae growth. Its growth interferes with recreational water activities including boating and swimming, […]

Cruising on a Hybrid Research Vessel

Cruising on a Hybrid Research Vessel

May 1, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

  Beginning in June, The Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk is inviting visitors to discover the multitude of life below the water’s surface by cruising on a one-of-a-kind new research vessel. The Aquarium’s new research vessel, named R/V Spirit of the Sound™, is a $2.7 million, 65-foot catamaran that will be bigger, quieter, and greener than […]

Reappearing Eelgrass

Reappearing Eelgrass

April 1, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

. A few decades ago, when eelgrass populations were healthy and vast underwater meadows covered the bottoms of our bays, this aquatic plant species was largely considered to be more of a nuisance than anything else. Who would have imagined then that people would now volunteer to help this most underappreciated species? In the past, […]

Sea Change for Jamaica Bay

Sea Change for Jamaica Bay

February 1, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

Jamaica Bay has played many roles in the lively history of New York. The fertile marshes provided rich fishing grounds for Lenape Indians, and the tides gave power to the Dutch gristmills along its banks. The waters teemed with bass, weakfish, flounder, and oysters; migratory birds gathered to rest and recharge for their long journeys […]

Inspiring 25,000 Young Scientists to Clean our Oceans

Inspiring 25,000 Young Scientists to Clean our Oceans

January 1, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

. There are plenty of doom and gloom news stories about how polluted our oceans have become, with plastic islands the size of Texas and huge slicks of oil. We’re often left with the impression that these problems are too big to tackle, so how do we inspire future generations to act? I would have […]

Long Island Lobsters Reveal Clues to Climate Change

Long Island Lobsters Reveal Clues to Climate Change

November 1, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

Could sentinel monitoring help head off an environmental calamity? The first hint came in the summer of 1999 when lobstermen, expecting a bumper haul of crustaceans, instead started finding sick and dead lobsters in their traps. As the months wore on, the traps bore more dead specimens than live ones, and the catastrophe became clear. […]

Green Winterizing

Green Winterizing

October 1, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

Though we know our landscapes will be brown (and possibly white) before too long, there’s no reason we can’t keep things green while we prepare our vessels for the winter. Products commonly found on boats or used to winterize them may be classified as toxic to the environment, including antifreeze, paints, motor oil, coolant, cleaning […]

Helping the Gowanus Canal Come Clean

Helping the Gowanus Canal Come Clean

September 1, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

Helping the Gowanus Canal Come Clean Aquatic robot aids effort to save polluted NYC waterway Peering into the opaque, olive-toned water of Brooklyn’s Gowanus Canal from the safety of my canoe, I spotted patches of lavender oil speckling the surface. Clumps of unidentifiable garbage floated past my paddle. Up ahead, pedestrians crossing the Union Street […]

Minimize Your Boat’s Carbon Footprint

Minimize Your Boat’s Carbon Footprint

July 1, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

In case you think you only have a carbon footprint if you walk, drive, or are otherwise crossing on (or over) land, think again.  Carbon footprints measure the effects on the climate in terms of the amount of greenhouse gases produced, so a boat may impact the planet as much as a jet liner flying […]

All Engines Are Not Alike

All Engines Are Not Alike

May 1, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

For the recreational boater, the two popular choices for engines are the two-stroke and the four-stroke.  Each has its advantages, but the four-stroke may be the engine of choice for the environmentally conscious boater. Due to new emission standards, both the two-stroke and the four-stroke engines have made great strides in reducing the amount of […]

Don’t Dirty the Waters When You Clean Your Boat

Don’t Dirty the Waters When You Clean Your Boat

April 1, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

While you’re raring to prep your boat and get going, our waterways really need you to green up as you clean up. Gone are the days of choosing efficiency over the environment. This spring, you’ll sacrifice nothing but a little time spent selecting the most environmentally-friendly products available. As you search for reduced enviro-impact products, […]

Aquarium Developing Hybrid Research Vessel

Aquarium Developing Hybrid Research Vessel

February 1, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

Each year, thousands of children cruise out onto the Long Island Sound with The Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk for hands-on introductions to fish, crabs, squid, and all sorts of live marine creatures brought up right out of the water. Beginning in the fall, those school trips will be a lot greener. The aquarium is completing […]

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