Long Island Nitrogen Action Plan (LINAP) – August Newsletter
In this month’s issue of the LINAP newsletter, we highlight the ongoing nitrogen reduction-related initiatives lead by our LINAP partners in the South Shore Estuary Reserve Office.
Overview of the South Shore Estuary Reserve
The South Shore Estuary Reserve Act was enacted by the NYS Legislature to protect and manage the Reserve as a single integrated estuary and a maritime region. The Reserve is administered by the New York State Department of State in cooperation with the South Shore Estuary Reserve Council. The Council is comprised of State and local governments, non-profit and academic organizations and other local stakeholders. Additionally, the Council is advised by a Citizens Advisory Committee and a Technical Advisory Committee. The Reserve extends 75 miles east from the Nassau County/New York City line to the Village of Southampton in Suffolk County. From south to north, the Reserve extends from the mean high tide line on the ocean side of the barrier island to the inland limits of the drainage areas.
Comprehensive Management Plan
The Reserve Council was charged with preparing a Comprehensive Management Plan (CMP). The CMP recommends implementation actions to:
Activities to implement the CMP can be carried out by federal, state and local governments, non-profit organizations, businesses, and academic institutions. The Council reviews the plan for its effectiveness and recommends revisions to the plan when necessary.
An update of the Comprehensive Management Plan is expected to be completed this year.
South Shore Estuary Local Assistance Grants
The South Shore Estuary Reserve Local Assistance Grants Program helps to fund actions that advance the Reserve’s Comprehensive Management Plan. Municipalities within the Reserve may apply for up to $50,000. Many of the projects funded by the Local Assistance Grants Program are focused on water quality and support the goals of the Long Island Nitrogen Action Plan. Some recent examples of water quality-related projects include:
A full list of grant awards can be found here.
Long Island South Shore Estuary Reserve Coordinated Water Resource Monitoring Strategy
The Long Island South Shore Estuary Reserve Coordinated Water Resources Monitoring Strategy (CWRMS), a collaborative effort between the New York State Department of State and the United States Geological Survey, provides the monitoring for the ecological health within the Reserve and presents suggestions from stakeholders for future data collection, data management, and coordination among monitoring programs.
The Strategy is ongoing and will guide future environmental monitoring and coordinate efforts to improve water quality, ecology, and the regional economy. It will also help coordinate monitoring data on important challenges facing the Reserve, such as failing and outdated onsite wastewater treatment systems, declining fisheries and shellfish landings, wetlands loss, and beach closures. The CWRMS report and the associated CWRMS website and CWRMS interactive mapper are intended to inform the latest iteration of the SSER Comprehensive Management Plan.
South Shore Estuary Benthic Habitat Mapping
In partnership with the Governor’s Office for Storm Recovery, an aerial survey of the South Shore Estuary is being conducted. The project started in the spring of 2018 and will conclude in late 2019. Results from this survey will be compared to data collected in 2002 to assess the health of Submerged Aquatic Vegetation in the South Shore Estuary.
2019 South Shore Estuary Reserve Council Stewardship Award
The South Shore Estuary Reserve Council Stewardship Award recognizes citizens and organizations that have made significant contributions to preserve and protect the South Shore Estuary’s unique natural environment and maritime traditions. The award is an implementation action in the Comprehensive Management Plan and promotes and encourages grassroots stewardship activities, including cleanups, restoration, and education and will build public awareness in the Reserve.
In 2018, two South Shore Estuary Reserve Council Stewardship Awards were presented. One was presented to Scott Bochner, an advocate who played a role in educating the community on the importance of upgrading the Bay Park Sewage Treatment Plant and relocating the outfall pipe to the ocean outfall at the Cedar Creek Sewage Treatment Plant. The second was presented to George and Richard Remmer, owners of The Snapper Inn and Marina for their contributions to preserve and protect the Reserve. Additionally, a Career Milestone Award was given to Charles de Quillfeldt from DEC, for his 30 plus years working with and supporting the Reserve.
Nominations for the 2019 Stewardship Award are now being accepted. Nominees should demonstrate initiative and innovation in advancing one or more or the Reserve CCMP implementation outcomes. Information about stewardship awards and nomination forms can be found here.