After decades of effort, the voluntary, collaborative approach to restoring the health and vitality of the Chesapeake Bay— the largest estuary in the United States—has not worked and, in fact, is failing. A diverse group of 57 senior scientists and policymakers have joined forces to save the Bay. This is our plan.

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Author Archives: Guest

A Chemical Reaction

For those who dream of a chemical-free Cheasapeake Bay, this guest post from founder Paul Tukey demonstrates that dreams can, in fact, come true.

The topic of what, exactly, facilitates real change in human habits has been the focus of behavioral scientists, political pundits and clever marketers for as long as we’ve had a mature free market system in North America. In the non-profit world, where resources are scarce, almost by definition, we’re constantly looking for ways to get our message its proverbial 15 minutes in the limelight. Often, we’re lucky to grab 15 seconds of someone’s attention, so our message better damn well be clear.

At, founded in Maine and Washington, D.C., in 2006 to reduce the toxic load on our backyard lawns, business and college campuses and public parks, we’ve taken many of our cues from a lone Canadian doctor. A quarter century ago, when Dr. June Irwin, a dermatologist, heard the renowned author and activist Gordon Sinclair say that “letters to the editor are free,” she took it to heart.Continue Reading

A New Day for the Anacostia River

(Posted by Brooke DeRenzis and Walter Smith.)
The Anacostia watershed is one of the most densely populated watersheds of the Chesapeake Bay drainage basin. Like many urban watersheds, it is severely polluted by stormwater which runs off of roofs, roads, driveways and parking lots—picking up trash, oil, and bacteria along the way—and into the river and its streams. Although urban and suburban development accounts for only 9 percent of the Chesapeake Bay watershed’s land use, the Bay watershed is becoming more developed. In fact, according to the Chesapeake Bay Program, stormwater runoff is the Bay’s only major source of pollution that is increasing.
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Congressman Goodlatte and You

(Posted by Doug Siglin.)

Perhaps you read in the papers that the Goodlatte amendment to withhold funds from implementation of the Chesapeake Bay TMDL (Total Daily Maximum Load) is dead for the moment. But don’t bother to celebrate: It or something similar will be offered again not long after the spring rains.Continue Reading

For Bay Clean Up, Goals Without Consequences Are Seldom Met

(posted by Tim Simpson)

Goals without consequences are almost never met by nations, states or individuals. Weight loss comes to mind. While being overweight has health consequences (not unlike ignoring the health of the Bay), their onset is gradual and long-term so it’s easy to ignore our well intentioned goals. But, what does it matter if we wait one more year? That same logic has been applied to the Bay Program and we are almost to the point of not having leaders who remember what a healthy Bay is.Continue Reading

House Ag Committee’s Assault on Science

(Posted by Bill Thompson.)

The assault against science and facts hit a new low when opponents of mandatory efforts to regulate clean water in the Chesapeake Bay used a March 16 House Agriculture subcommittee hearing to further their attempts to undercut the U.S. EPA’s Total Maximum Daily Loads (TMDL) requirements.Continue Reading