Bay Daily on Hiatus

Congratulations to Bay Daily creator, Tom Pelton, who has accepted a position with another organization working to make the world a better place. 

In his absence, Bay Daily will be put on temporary hiatus. We hope to be back to followers of this award-winning blog soon. Please stand by!

Oyster Farming Just Keeps Booming

P6170015Among the good-news stories about Chesapeake Bay restoration progress is the rebounding oyster industry.

Annual harvests of Bay oysters have increased from a low point of 50,018 bushels in 2003-04 to more than 745,000 bushels in 2012-13. That’s nearly a 15-fold increase, and rising.

The rebound is good news not only for seafood lovers and the watermen, packing houses, and restaurants that sell oysters; it’s good for the Chesapeake Bay. Oysters help filter and clear Bay waters and provide food and homes for an immense number of fish, crabs, and other marine critters. And while oyster can’t restore the Bay themselves, the Bay will not be restored without a robust and healthy oyster population.

Driving much of the rebound in oyster harvests is the Bay’s thriving oyster aquaculture industry,

especially in Virginia, where “oyster farming” and harvests from private leases account for more than 60% of the state’s annual oyster haul. A report this month from the Virginia Sea Grant Marine Extension Program provides the numbers.

Continue reading "Oyster Farming Just Keeps Booming" »

Virginia Stands with the Bay

The headline on the news story flashing across the nation Thursday said it all: “Virginia Stands with Chesapeake Bay Restoration Plan.” 

Thursday, Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring announced he had filed a “friend of the court” legal brief to protect Virginia’s efforts – and those of the other Bay states and the federal government – to work together to restore the Chesapeake Bay and its rivers and streams.

One would think that Virginia and its Bay partners could work cooperatively with each other to clean ThanksPeggyandHerring up their waterways without interference from outsiders. After all, they’ve been doing just that for 31 years in one of the most comprehensive, sophisticated estuarine restoration efforts in the world.

But 21 other states, some as far away as Alaska, have filed their own legal arguments in support of the American Farm Bureau Federation and other national farm lobby groups suing to halt the Bay cleanup effort. The Big Farm lobbyists and the 21 states argue that the cooperative cleanup plan, the Bay Clean Water Blueprint, represents an unconstitutional federal overreach, infringes on state authority, and threatens other parts of the nation that “could be next.”

But as Attorney General Herring (above right, with Chesapeake Bay Foundation Virginia Senior Attorney Peggy Sanner) said in announcing the Virginia defense, “When the most promising plan to protect and restore the Bay comes under attack, I am going to stand up for the health of Virginia's families, for Virginia's economic interests, for Virginia's efforts to restore the Chesapeake Bay. This case is simply about whether Virginia and the other Bay states have the authority to work cooperatively to manage and restore the Bay, as they have done for decades.”

Continue reading "Virginia Stands with the Bay" »

Virginia Through the Lens of a Photo-Artist

Everyone takes pictures these days. Most of us carry cell phones with built-in cameras, and many of us own inexpensive point-and-shoot digital cameras. And who needs film anymore?!

But while everyone is taking photographs, not everyone is a photographer. Yes, we all get lucky and snap an occasional good picture. But great photography remains an art form, requiring talent, practice, persistence, patience, and some luck.

If you still think just anyone can take compelling photographs, take a look at Natural Virginia, a brand new coffee-table book of images documenting the stunning beauty of Virginia’s natural landscapes as photographed by Ben Greenberg.

Nearly every page prompts a “wow” or a smile or a memory. Like a fine painting, the images demand that you linger and study their composition, texture, and detail.

Continue reading "Virginia Through the Lens of a Photo-Artist" »

Interfaith Environmental Festival Planned for April 27

Earth Water Faith photo Tom ZolperPraise the creator by protecting creation.

An interfaith celebration of Earth Day is planned for Sunday, April 27, at the Annapolis Towne Centre mall, 203 Harker Place in Annapolis.

The “Earth, Water, Faith Festival: Creative Alternatives to Protect the Earth’s Resources,” will feature live music, readings, and reflections, as well as games and t-shirt decorating for kids.

For more information, click here.

Continue reading "Interfaith Environmental Festival Planned for April 27" »