Left to right, Frances Hart, Gov. Carney, Nancy Cabrera-Santos,
Dave Jaeger, former DE Sen. George Bunting
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
February 20, 2017
Members of the Inland Bays Foundation’s Board of Directors met with Governor Carney on February 7 in Dover to discuss their 2017 agenda and gain the Governor’s support. The group received a warm welcome from the Governor, who expressed appreciation for being the recipient of the IBF 2016 Environmental Award at the Foundation’s annual “Love Your Inland Bays” dinner, held in November.
IBF President Nancy Cabrera-Santos outlined the organization’s advocacy goals for cleaning up the Inland Bays including continued participation on the Clean Water Task Force, achieving full funding for the state’s Cover Crop Program, and bringing the Inland Bays under the NPDES (National Pollution Discharge Elimination System) guidelines administered through the Dept. of National Resources & Environmental Control. Last year, the Foundation submitted a petition to the EPA requesting that the Inland Bays Watershed be designated as a regulated MS4 (Municipal Small Separate Sewer System) comparable to programs currently being administered in areas such as Laurel and Smyrna.
The Foundation members expressed their appreciation for Gov. Carney’s outstanding track record of protecting Delaware’s unique and fragile environment. In 2015, then U.S. Congressman John Carney was appointed Co-Chair of the DE River Basin Task Force. This resulted in HR1772, the DE River Basin Conservation Act, passed during the 114th Congress.
The River Basin Act brings $6.9 million in federal funding to the four states of the DE River Basin Watershed, including all of DE Bay and sections of New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania. The funding is used to reduce coastal flooding, restore wetlands and beach habitats, and increase the resiliency of native eco-systems vulnerable to storm degradation.
A FEW FACTS: 15 million people rely on the River Basin for water (5% of US population).The DE River Basin has thousands of miles of scenic rivers and wildlife, six National Wildlife Refuges, 200 species of resident and migratory fish, and is home to the largest population of American Horseshoe Crabs in the nation.
BACK TO the INLAND BAYS WATERSHED:
2017 promises to be a challenging year for environmental groups such as the Inland Bays Foundation. Coalitions are now being formed here in Sussex County to extend outreach efforts and to magnify shared goals for cleaning up our polluted waterways. In the words of Michael Brune, Executive Director of the Sierra Club: “We will educate, litigate, agitate, and organize twice as hard and 10 times more effectively.”
Here in Delaware, with over 90% of our waterways polluted, we have renewed hopes that with Gov. Carney at the helm, we can significantly improve our Inland Bays— treasures too precious to be carelessly left for clean up by future generations.
For more information, visit: www.inlandbaysfoundation.org
The Inland Bays Foundation is a non-profit 501 (c3) organization. Meetings are held the second Tuesday of the month (6pm) at the South Coastal Library in Bethany Beach, DE.