Water is always at the forefront of our minds—and never more so than on World Water Day! This year’s theme is Water and Energy. How is water related to energy, you ask? Water is related to almost everything we do!
Connecticut has over 5,300 river miles and nearly 65,000 acres of lakes, while the estuarine waters of Long Island Sound number 1,400 square miles. A fifth of the nation’s people live within 50 miles of the Sound and many residents depend on the Sound and our waterways for recreation and even their livelihoods. The health of our rivers, lakes, streams, and the Sound is entwined with the health, economy, and everyday life of our whole region.
Our water is threatened every day by sewage pollution, dirty energy, over-development that leads to stormwater runoff, and climate change. But every day, CFE/Save the Sound, our allies around the region, and citizens like you work to protect our precious waters. Read on for details of some exciting projects and how you can get involved!
- The byproducts of energy extraction can pose serious risks to our water. We’re fighting to keep toxic fracking waste out of Connecticut and Long Island Sound. Our latest action alert asked Connecticut residents to contact their legislators to support a ban on bringing fracking waste into our state.
- This great blog post from the Environmental Defense Fund draws the important connections between water and energy—energy secures, delivers, treats, and distributes water, while water is often used (and degraded) to develop, process, and deliver energy.
- Even here in the U.S., our drinking water can be at risk. The Connecticut state legislature is considering a bill that could put the forests that filter our public drinking water supply at risk. UPDATE: The Public Health Committee appears to have defeated the bill! We will keep an eye on further developments.
- Last week we wrote to the New York Times to push for the funding New York communities need to keep bacteria-laden sewage off their beaches.
- Bioextraction uses seaweed and mussels to help clean up Long Island Sound. These species can remove excess nitrogen from the water, helping keep oxygen levels high enough to sustain other species through the summer months. Harvesting the seaweed and mussels for sale can even provide a source of income for people along the Sound!
- A Blue Plan for Long Island Sound would inventory the Sound’s resources and use that data to protect traditional uses, plan for future uses, and prevent potential conflicts. Over the years we’ve also seen a number of energy proposals storage and transmission proposals—like the Broadwater natural gas facility and the Island East pipeline—that would have damaged seafloor habitat and ended public use of some parts of the Sound’s surface. A Blue Plan will help protect the fragile habitats and waters of Long Island Sound from schemes like these.
Feeling inspired on World Water Day to get involved with protecting Long Island Sound yourself? Check out some of these great tips!