Summer 2016 Update at the Creeks

Breakfast Meeting at the Creeks

Many of you were able to attend the informative meeting on August 28 held at the Creeks, home of board member Dr. Anna Chapman and Ronald Perelman. For those of you who were not able to attend, we thought it would be informative to provide a brief synopsis.

Many local elected officials attended including: Suffolk County Legislator, Bridgett Fleming, East Hampton Town Supervisor, Larry Cantwell, East Hampton Village Mayor, Paul Rickenbach, East Hampton Town Trustees, Bill Taylor & Rick Drew.

Also attending were some of our most important NGO partners, the Peconic Land Trust, The Nature Conservancy, Perfect Earth Project and the Surfrider Foundation. Kim Shaw the Director of the East Hampton Town Natural Resource Department and Becky Molinaro, the East Hampton Village Administrator were also present.

 

FOGP’s Executive Director Sara Davison spoke about the recent and effective collaboration between the three levels of local government that have jurisdiction of Georgica Pond. A new committee of East Hampton Town, Village, Town Trustee officials and FOGP was formed this year called the Georgica Pond Steering Committee. The committee meets quarterly to discuss Georgica Pond issues and initiatives.

 

Pond Dredging

Dredging at the mouth of Georgica Pond, the “cut” and the entrance to Georgica Cove is a top FOGP priority– a DEC permit is pending. We are cautiously optimistic that work can start this fall. Approximately 16,000 cubic yards of sand will be removed, improving water circulation and pond depth.

 

Advances in Wastewater Management Technology

Suffolk County has finally updated their wastewater regulations after 40 years! New nitrogen removing septic systems will soon be available. Everyone around the pond is encouraged to upgrade their septic system as soon as possible. Nitrogen rich wastewater from pond-front homeowners reaches the pond in 0-2 years, so installing new septic system technology is the most important thing we can all do to reduce nitrogen input into the pond. Dr. Gobler’s data shows that 50% of the excess nitrogen in the pond comes from septic system wastewater. We will be back to you with more information on specific systems.

 

FOGP RECAP

Mission Statement: “To preserve the Georgica Pond Ecosystem through science-based, watershed-wide policy & restoration.”

  • Funding Science
  • Serving as a Community Catalyst
  • Advocating for land acquisition in the watershed
  • Advocating against detrimental development such as the proposed Wainscott Car Wash
  • Taking Action such as engaging the aquatic weed harvester
  • Educating citizens in the Georgica Pond Watershed and sharing our finding with other watersheds.

 

Dr. Christopher Gobler the Assistant Dean for Research at Stony Brook University’s School of Marine and Atmospheric Science gave an excellent presentation describing his work on behalf of FOGP. Summary of 2016 research findings as follows.

 

Nancy Kelley, the Director of The Nature Conservancy on Long Island discussed the important contributions to the East End that are being provided by FOGP. She also urged everyone to vote for the re-authorization of the Community Preservation Fund (CPF) which will be on the ballot on November 8. A yes vote in all 5 East End Towns would extend the CPF until 2050 allowing thousands more acres to be purchased and allowing up to 20% of the CPF revenue to be used for water quality improvement projects.

The meeting concluded with a 4-minute video produced by TNC featuring FOGP Board Member Annie Hall and her work to preserve Georgica Pond. Click to see the video.

As always, thank you for your consideration and support!