Thursday, December 20, 2012

Feds Put Out Chesapeake Bay Plans for 2013

The Fiscal Year 2013 Action Plan, required by Executive Order 13508, the Strategy for Protecting and Restoring the Chesapeake Bay Watershed, demonstrates the Federal agencies’ commitment to working together and with state partners to restore clean water, recover habitat, sustain fish and wildlife, and conserve land and increase public access throughout the Chesapeake Bay watershed...
The FY 2013 Action Plan includes a list of tangible efforts to be undertaken by federal agencies, including among others:
  • Collaborative efforts between the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) and the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) to work with the Eastern Brook Trout Joint Venture in prioritizing streams for restoration, monitoring of selected fish species to see if they are returning to streams where passage barriers have been removed and engage with NGOs and state partners to apply new science on black duck population sustainment.
  • Continued delivery of technical support by U.S. Forest Service (USFS) and FWS, in conjunction with state forestry agencies, to encourage landowners to adopt riparian forest buffers.
  • Expansion of tributary-scale oyster restoration efforts led by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) and state agencies in Maryland and Virginia.
  • Establishment of a conservation threshold and management target for male blue crabs through collaborative work by the Chesapeake Bay Program Fisheries Goal Implementation Team with the Chesapeake Bay Stock Assessment Committee.
  • Development of management options and providing best science needed through federal partnership, led by USGS and in coordination with the states, to address the sediment storage capacity of the Conowingo Dam.
  • Continued support for voluntary actions by farmers throughout the watershed to improve water quality through a variety of financial and technical support programs provided by the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
  • Continued work by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) with state partners to help meet commitments in their Watershed Implementation Plans in support of the Chesapeake Bay Total Maximum Daily Load, or “pollution diet.”
  • Ongoing efforts by the Department of Defense to complete stormwater management assessments at installations in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed. Assessments will be used to determine appropriate stormwater management controls to reduce pollutant loadings, improve stormwater quality and meet Chesapeake Bay jurisdictions’ WIPs and TMDL requirements.
  • Implementation of the Monitoring Alliance through the Chesapeake Bay Program, including federal, state and citizen monitoring programs.
  • Increased public access to the Chesapeake Bay through implementation of the U.S. National Park Service’s (NPS) Public Access Plan and broadening of the NPS sponsored Chesapeake Youth Corps Network to create jobs and carry out conservation and restoration projects in priority watersheds.
Looking through the jargon, I don't see anything that stands out as new and exciting, or likely to make much change in the health of the Bay over a years time. 

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