Speak Up for the Bay Tomorrow Night

Elected and appointed officials in Richmond and Washington, D.C. are making decisions about Bay restoration right now! They need to hear from you.

Please join CBF tomorrow evening for a Chesapeake Bay Town Hall meeting in Arlington, VA. Find out about progress on Bay restoration efforts—including the President’s Executive Order and upcoming legislation in the House and Senate.

Whether you have specific questions you’d like to get answered or simply want to hear the latest updates directly from the movers-and-shakers involved, your participation will help make the point that you want promises turned into actions! For more information and to RSVP, click here.

Guest Speaker:
Congressman Jim Moran, Virginia District 8

Panel Speakers:   
Chuck Fox, EPA Senior Advisor on the Chesapeake Bay
Senator Mary Margaret Whipple, Virginia District 31
Dr. Roger Mann, Director of Research and Advisory Services, Virginia Institute of Marine Science
Roy Hoagland, Vice President, Chesapeake Bay Foundation

For more information and to RSVP, click here.


CBF's Will Baker on WYPR Thursday

Tune into Baltimore public radio station WYPR 88.1 FM Thursday (September 17th) at noon to hear CBF President Will Baker on the Dan Rodricks show. Will will be Mr. Rodrick’s guest and will discuss the draft Executive Order reports issued last week. Those reports outline the federal government’s new leadership for the Chesapeake and the kinds of strategies federal agencies proposed to take.


Listen Thursday or catch the podcast, then share your thoughts with us here.


Tune in to CBF's Will Baker on WAMU Radio Noon Today

Tomorrow, December 9, marks the 25th anniversary of a comprehensive effort to save the Chesapeake Bay. Tune in to WAMU 88.5 FM today at noon and join Chesapeake Bay Foundation (CBF) President Will Baker and Washington, D.C. radio host Kojo Nnamdi for a look back at 25 years of working to save the Bay; what's been accomplished and what the future may hold.

Take this opportunity to call in with your questions. WAMU's talk show call-in number is 800-433-8850.

If you're concerned about the lack of progress in cleaning up the Bay and believe the Environmental Protection Agency should uphold the Clean Water Act, please sign our petition and encourage your friends and family to sign it, as well.


Rally_image_272x171_4859 Yesterday, while state and federal officials met inside Union Station for their annual Executive Council of the Bay Program meeting, CBF led a rally and performance action to protest the government's slow progress on Bay restoration. Turnout was excellent -- thank you to our Bay supporters who came down to D.C. to participate!

In the park outside Union Station, 200 or so folks chanted "EPA: Don't Delay, Save the Bay." Ken Smith, president of the Virginia State Waterman's Association broke down while he spoke about the losses that the watermen are suffering.

Rally_image_190x150_4673 In the words of Emily from Oceana, "Ken Smith of the Virginia Waterman's Association had to pause and choke back tears as he told the crowd about his memories of the Bay. "Those days are gone, but I'm hoping it will happen again."

CBF Board chair Keith Campbell and Sue Brown of the National Wildlife Federation stirred the crowd, and former Maryland State Senator Bernie Fowler vowed we will not give up until he can see his feet through clear Bay waters.

As CBF President Will Baker described it in an e-mail to staff last night, "Then in an unprecedented action, long lines of our ralliers in black t-shirts walked slowly and solemnly, with cameras from the media rolling, across the main floor of Union Station where the meeting was taking place. Described by onlookers as "awesome" and "eerie," the action was a powerful statement of frustration with the slowness of progress."

There's a good video on WJZ-TV's website. Photos and more video will be online soon.

If you attended the rally or happened to be in Union Station at the time, share your thoughts with us.

Photos by Nikki Davis


Dealing With Disaster

It's been quite a week for the Chesapeake Bay.

First, on Monday, Bay state and Washington, D.C. representatives and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency tentatively agreed to recommend pushing back the current 2010 deadline, set in 2000, for cleaning up the Bay another ten years. CBF issued a statement congratulating governments for what they have achieved in recent years but expressing frustration that the deadline for true restoration has been pushed back on leaders who have not yet come to office or position.

On Tuesday, U.S. Commerce Secretary Carlos Gutierrez issued a federal disaster declaration for the Bay's blue crab fishery. Maryland Senator Barbara Mikulski asked for the declaration back in May. Funding is still pending but Sen. Mikulski is optimistic it will come through quickly.

As an editorial in the Free Lance-Star stated, both serve as reminders that, even in this see-sawing economy, "cleaning up the bay needs to remain a top priority--one that will pay future economic dividends in jobs, recreational pursuits, and the bay's delicious bounty."

An editorial in today's Daily Press about the crab crisis notes, "Real improvement in the outlook for crabs or any bay residents depends on fixing the underlying conditions that threaten them." That echoes arguments made back in April that while we need a quick fix for the sake of our watermen's economy, what we really need is long-term committment. Not rhetoric, real committment.

Yesterday, in a move that holds the federal government accountable for its responsibilities to the Clean Water Act and to the American public, CBF issued a federal blueprint for environmental action by the next Administration. Titled "Restoring Clean Water and the Chesapeake Bay: A Plan for America's Next President," it outlines 16 specific actions that the next president and Congress need to take if we are to be successful in reducing pollution, meeting the requirements of the Clean Water Act, and improving local economies.

What are your thoughts on the week's news?


Will Baker on NPR Today

KnWill Baker, president of the Chesapeake Bay Foundation, will join host Kojo Nnamdi at noon today on "The Politics Hour with Kojo and Jonetta" on WAMU 88.5FM in Washington D.C.

From Kojo's website -- "Politicians love to talk about cleaning up the Chesapeake Bay. But every political season, it seems that bold talk rarely translates into bold actions. (On today's show) we consider the politics of pollution in our region."

If you can't listen on the radio, the podcast should be available about an hour after the show ends.


Report Bad Water Quality

Badwatershotline 1.866.666.9260
Write that number down.

The news this summer has been dismal. Three-hundred-thousand fish dead in Mattox Creek off the Potomac River in July. Twenty thousand in Weems Creek in June. A six-mile-long algal bloom in the Potomac.

We want to know more about what's going on in our rivers and Bay, and we need your help to do it.

If you see or hear about something troubling on the water —like an algal bloom, fish kill, or "crab jubilee"—inform the proper authorities and call CBF'S Bad Water Strike Force Hotline at 1.866.666.9260.

When you call, you'll be asked for some basic information, including:

  • Where and when did the event happen?
  • What did the water look like?
  • Were there dead fish? If so, how many, what kind, big or small?
  • What were the weather conditions?
  • Have you or can you take a picture of the event?
  • Have you contacted the appropriate state agency?

At the end of the summer, CBF will use your data to develop a report on bad water events in the region.  We will share the report with government officials and urge them to support funding for Bay restoration. We'll also share the report with you.


Calling all Chesapeake Bay Anglers: Reward -- Striped bass wearing green tags

Biologists want to study the striped bass they tagged earlier to see whether the striped bass have gotten sicker, healthier or stayed the same. The results could guide Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR) and the Virginia Institute of Marine Science (VIMS) officials in responding to mycobacteriosis, a mysterious wasting disease that now infects more than half the Chesapeake Bay's striped bass. The tags include a toll-free number to call.

Anglers get $5 for calling in a catch, or $20 if they keep the fish on ice for scientists to retrieve.  (from WMDT- 45)