The breach, now known as Bellport Inlet, is now broadly accepted as being a boon to The Great South Bay. No longer are there calls for its closure. It has revitalized Bellport Bay, and showed us what we lost and could yet get back
Local residents from Oakdale, Sayville, and West Sayville rally for sewering and a return of a way of life
The Great South Bay may getting worse in general, year by year, but not around the breach due south of Bellport. There, you will see clean water, fish, birds, seal, fish, mussel beds -- nature resurgent. The National Parks Service is obliged to offer this period of public comment as it prepares its management plan and environmental impact statement for "The Breach." So let's tell them where we stand!
Save The Great South Bay has teamed with Loomstate and Spectrum designs to create sustainable clothing to save the great south bay.
The video here is from last year's Action Forum, where I offer an update from 2013. Membership in the Save The Great South Bay Facebook Group had tripled to over 1700. A consortium called The Long Island Clean Water Partnership had formed, comprised of over 100 organizations. Somehow, people on the local, state and federal level got on the same page, prodded by the science. Similarly, local reporting on Long Island's environmental issues, especially around water quality, really came around. Increasingly, Long Islanders are becoming aware of the challenges our waters face.
This December finds Long Island's environmentalists, those in The Nature Conservancy, The Citizen's Campaign for the Environment, The Group For the East End, The Pine Barrens Society, and the 100+ local organizations in The Long Island Clean Water Partnership in a state of wonder and exhaustion: Wonder because politicians and policy makers at all levels of government and across the political spectrum are standing together. They are all in agreement with the science that shows that Long Island is in a water quality / water pollution crisis and that something must be done immediately and on a large scale to address it.
This what happens on Long Island in the warm months every time it rains. And it gets worse by the year. Before 1984, we did not have algal blooms around Long Island. Headlong development has caught up with us. What led us to think that we could put 500,000 septic tanks / cesspools in the low lying sand of Long Island and not suffer some consequences? That said, we had no definitive scientific link between nitrogen from our septic tanks and the explosion of algal blooms now threatening almost all our waters until 2005.
Our latest web based map showing where to wine and dine sustainably and organically on Long Island.
As the bill in Albany died, a plan on Long Island was born. Now it is truly up to Governor Cuomo's 'task force' on Water Quality and Coastal Resiliency to hold the last of its four public meetings and offer its recommendations. Will Governor Cuomo have the vision and drive to move past the Albany nonsense to protect and restore the water sole source supply of drinking water for 3 million Long islanders, and the $5 billion dollar per year cash cow coastal economy of New York State? Will Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone step up and make the sweeping agency reforms recommended by the expert panel from IBM Smarter Cities Program? If so - then best of times indeed. Between IBM and the many dozens of experts in consultation now on water quality issues, we have the very best science in the world at hand to address our problems. We need to leverage this fact. "We have to."
Many of us (about 35 based on RSVPs, seeing people there) attended "Sandy's Silver Lining," A Public Forum on The Breach, held at Bellport Middle School on the 21st between 9:30 - 12:00. The response was strong even though it was the last shopping weekend before Christmas; this issue is still front and center for us, and so about 200 showed in total. Thomas Bruckner should be singled out as having done a marvelous job assembling the panel, and in the presentation, with informative segues between speakers where he showed pics and video from his some 30 trips to the breach / inlet. He's a natural MC. The sound system was out of whack, but we will get this fixed for next time, for yes, there will be next times, as what Commissioner Soller had to say make clear.