Bonnie was recognized for her indefatigable work to protect Mattawoman Creek by not only engaging in monitoring activities, but by fostering collaboration between citizen and professional scientists in the monitoring community and dispersing the knowledge to advocate effectively for Mattawoman's conservation.
More information on the Carl Weber award is available here.
Photos by Jim Long (top); Sherry Hessian (bottom)
Maryland Water Monitoring Council on December 2, 2016. Jim Long, MWS president, joined Kim Brandt of 1000 Friends of Maryland to describe how scientific monitoring served as a foundation for the advocacy that led to a new and more conservation-conscious comprehensive land-use plan in Charles County.A conference program is available here.
The conference was attended by more than 500 people representing federal, state, and local governments, academia, and watershed groups who are interested in understanding, conserving and restoring Maryland's waters.
this news story, or on our website.The project had been approved despite the fact that it would increased by 60% the traffic on rural Billingsley Road,often cited by the county for its safety issues. The project also threatened a globally rare Magnolia Bog and would have damaged a tributary to Mattawoman Creek by covering the 184 acre site with 18% impervious surface.
Learn more here.
Pictured, from left: ACFHP Steering Committee member Dr. Wilson Laney, Award recipient Jim Long, Mrs. and Mr. Laser, Award recipient Bonnie Bick, and Maine ASMFC Commissioner Patrick Keliher
Maryland Native Plant Society. Unfortunately, one of the bogs is located within the site of the huge Guilford subdivision proposed for Bryans Road. This project could not happen under Charles County's new common-sense comprehensive land-use plan, but is grandfathered. Guilford's shoddy approval is being challenged at the Board of Appeals October 11th, 2016 meeting, 7 PM, at the government building in La Plata. The public is invited to attend to show support. The project would increase traffic on rural but too-busy Billingsley Rd by 60%! As we often say, protecting a watershed protects people!"Fall-Line Terrace-Gravel Magnolia Bogs," as they are termed by NatureServe, are extremely rare wetlands found only in the mid-Atlantic near the "fall line" zone. They form in gravelly soils at the headwaters of small streams. Technically a nutrient-poor fen, these wetlands depend on a constant supply of groundwater seepage to keep soils saturated, or nearly so. The required stable surficial water-table is vulnerable to pavement covering its recharge area, so even if a bog is not destroyed outright, it can be desiccated by the impervious surface of nearby development. Over time most Magnolia Bogs have been destroyed or degraded by development. No exception is Charles County's only two know bogs, both in the Mattawoman watershed. Araby Bog is being degraded by a subdivision, and Bryans Road Bog is threatened by Guilford.
A brief description of some of the remaining bogs is here.
On Aug. 13 and 14, 2016, MWS sponsored several events at Discover Quest, Charles County's tourism bash held in conjunction with the BassMasters Elite national bass tournament.Jim Long, president of MWS, presented Captain John Smith's Discover Quest that introduced some natural gems of western Charles County using the words of Captain Smith as a guide.
On the 14th, free tours of the American Lotus were co-sponsored with Smallwood State Park. The park provided its newly refurbished pontoon boat and the pilot, while MWS supplied a tour guide. Three tours allowed boat-fulls of tourists to view the lotus in full bloom surrounded by gorgeous freshwater tidal marshes.
On Saturday, Don Shomette, author and underwater archeologist (pictured), presented Sanctuary: The Potomac as a Paradigm, a history of Mallows Bay and discussion of the proposed Mallows-Potomac National Marine Sanctuary.
For that, a trash terrarium, click here.Pictured are students from Lackey High School who hiked to the Mattawoman estuary to collect trash.
Photo by Anne Stark
Photo: an impervious-surface retrofitting project in Bryans Road.
Yet the Restoration Plan projects that new growth since 2000--even with modern stormwater controls--swamps the pollution that was present then. It is clear that the comprehensive land-use plan must stop digging the hole deeper.
news report about a public hearing on Charles County's Financial Assurance Plan. The plan is intended to ensure funds are available to carry out restoration projects required by the county's stormwater permit. These projects are outlined in extensive Restoration Plan.This is the 1st time that the Maryland-issued MS4 permit and subsequent legislation required the county to produce a Restoration Plan and Financial Assurance Plan.
These plans are an eye-opener. The plans essentially say that the impervious surface built in the past without stormwater controls overwhelms the ability to retrofit 20% of the surfaces within the five-year permit cycle.
And the Restoration Plan also is unable to see a way to reduce nitrogen pollution to the level "required" in the pollution diet for Mattawoman Creek from a year-2000 baseline.
Read an article on the summit here.
The summit panelists discussed numerous ideas for fixing the problems. An important step for Mattawoman is to stop digging the hole deeper by fixing the Comprehensive Plan to limit impervious surface and adjust the growth rate downward.
Photo: screen shot of the broadcast showing Mattawoman Creek tidal freshwater estuary.
Watch it here!
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