Environmental scientists have been studying for years how The Bay Park Sewage Treatment Plant, originally constructed in 1949, and expanded in the '70's and '80s as Nassau County's population exploded, has been affecting water quality in the Western Bays. It was found that 85% of the nitrogenous waste in those waters was coming from the effluent from the Bay Park plant. This was destroying marsh, shellfish and fish habitats.
Hi, I am Marshall Brown, Founder of Save The Great South Bay. I want to first thank The Freeport Tuna Club for the invitation to speak before you. The FTC has been around a long time, whereas we only began last August. We began because as we gathered for a Sayville High School Reunion, all we could talk about the whole evening was what had happened to the bay, and what we could do to fix it. We want our children and grandchildren to fish, clam, swim and boat in these waters just as we had, a goal that I am sure you share. If you want to fix a bay, who do you speak with? Well there's The Peconic Bay Keeper for one, The Nature Conservancy for another, The Citizen's Campaign For The Environment, Operation Splash!, Seatuck (which just successfully had installed fish ladders on The Carll's River -- more on that later), Stony Brook University's School of Marine and Atmospheric Sciences, and further afield, other local non-profits around the country like Santa Monica's Heal The Bay, and The Chesapeake Bay Foundation. We all face the same challenge -- how do you revitalize bays and the estuaries that feed them given all the environmental insults we have inflicted upon them -- septic tank seepage, lawn fertilizers, outfall pipes, pesticides, the over harvesting of shellfish, overdevelopment, the destruction of habitats. How do we make our waters sustainable, given the multiple threats these waters face?
Save the Great South Bay chooses science over politics.
With The New Inlet, Mother Nature's true gift was to give us but a glimpse of what the Great South Bay was and could be again. It's a challenge to us to take action. Next summer, will The New Inlet even be there, whether because of nature or man? Then what? The bay starts to die again. Here's what Mother Nature alone can't fix, and what we must fix if we want this bay all the way back, New Inlet or no New Inlet: