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Atlantic CoastWatch MAY-JUNE 2002

Daniel Island: The Community Wins News For Coastal Advocates


Conflicting visions of the future have long swirled around South Carolina’s
Daniel Island. This year, the island finally won. To residential real estate developers
z
this lightly populated 4,000 acre patch of marshland, nestled between the Cooper
and Wando Rivers 15 miles north of Charleston, seemed just right for the luxury Daniel Island Victory 1
market. Recently opened there are such amenities as a new tennis center, a private
golf club, and housing communities featuring various levels of gatedness. Promo- Everglades Funding 1
tional literature emphasizes woodlands, fields, and “marsh-lined waterways.”
Sayings 2
In 1999, however, the state’s Ports Authority launched an alternative view
of how to develop the island’s southern, seaward end. In an effort to triple the
Midnight Dumpings 3
capacity of Charleston, already among the nation’s busiest ports, the agency began
pushing the idea of a $1.3 billion “Global Gateway.” Involved would be 842 acres of
paving, 2 miles of wharves, and dredging to create a 45-foot-deep harbor channel Saving the Skipjack 3
suitable for mega-container ships. The terminal would spread across 1,300 acres, or
one third of the entire island, that the authority continues to own. Publications 4

As the permitting process got underway, reactions to the scheme followed Schooner Skipper Cleared 4
a predictable course. Referring often to the existing 83,000 jobs relating to port
activities, some politicians as well as longshoremen, development-minded citizens Boat Adoptions 5
and officials boosted the gateway as essential to the region’s economic future.
Opponents included a coalition of environmental groups. They cited traffic conges-
tion, pollution, and tax increases as reasons to oppose the initiative. Atlantic Salmon (cont’d) 5
(Continued, p. 7)
Wade-Ins Proliferate 6

Bahamas Parks
Everglades Funding: Blessings Mixed 6

Slimy Eels 6
In Tallahassee, Florida Governor Jeb Bush recently signed legislation
creating a bonding program that could be of major benefit to the $7.9 billion Ever-
glades restoration effort. The new law is worth $100 million a year, with matching by Courts & the Seashore 7
federal dollars, to be used for land purchases, research, and equipment needed to
undo flood control efforts undertaken back when draining the “River of Grass” was Upcoming Events 8
a popular idea. Not clear was the extent to which the new law favors restoration
over efforts to enhance water supplies that could involve further degradation. z
The Bush law includes one major hitch, reported the St. PetersburgTimes.
In what are described as awkward and ambiguous ways, it deprives citizens of the Recurring
right to challenge Everglades development initiatives, limiting the field to those
groups or individuals who stand to be personally affected by the outcome. Such People; Awards; Species &
“standing” in court has enabled citizens and environmental groups to win many Habitats; Restorations; Report Cards;
victories over the years, starting with the landmark decision in the 1960s that Products; Funding
prevented New York’s power company, Con Edison, from building an environmen-
tally harmful facility on the Hudson River’s Storm King Mountain.
Atlantic CoastWatch is a bimonthly
In Florida, many environmentalists and even the state’s Attorney General nonprofit newsletter for those
urged Governor Bush to veto the bill because of its provision on citizen legal stand- interested in the environmentally
ing. Other environmentalists swallowed hard and supported the measure on the sound development of the coastline
grounds that the Everglades needs the money. For a broader look at Everglades from the Gulf of Maine to the
issues, see the new series by Michael Grunwald in the Washington Post. Eastern Caribbean.
2
Atlantic CoastWatch
Vol. 6, No. 3 Sayings
A project of the Sustainable The following was written by Jeff South, Virginia Commonwealth Univer-
Development Institute, which seeks sity. It was first published by Blue Ridge Press.
to heighten the environmental quality
of economic development efforts, in Something stinks about sludge and the solution isn’t simply to hold your
coastal and in forest regions, by nose. Sludge is the earthly byproduct of sewage treatment. It is made up of human
communicating information about feces and other matter flushed down the toilet or rinsed down the drain. The
better policies and practices. SDI is nation’s wastewater treatment plants generate 7.5 million tons of sludge a year.
classified as a 501(c)(3) organization, More than half of that amount, equal to the tonnage of 87 Titanics, is spread on
exempt from federal income tax. farmland as fertilizer. Like all manure, it smells. So it’s no surprise that neighbors
would complain about the odor.
Board of Directors
But in recent years, the complaints have gone beyond smell. People who
Freeborn G. Jewett, Jr., Chairman live near sludge-treated land have complained about rashes and bronchitis in
Robert Geniesse, Chairman Emeritus Alabama, fever and vomiting in Florida, headaches and stomach aches in Virginia,
Roger D. Stone, President and contaminated groundwater in Georgia. Government officials and sewage-
Hart Fessenden, Treasurer treatment experts generally have dismissed such complaints as hysteria. They
Hassanali Mehran, Secretary insist that after it is properly disinfected, sludge is fine for the environment. To its
Edith A. Cecil proponents sludge isn’t a health problem, but a public relations problem. They don’t
David P. Hunt even call it sludge, they use the antiseptic name, biosolids.
Gay P. Lord
Lee Petty But now, scientists are raising serious questions about sludge. They
Simon Sidamon-Eristoff haven’t proved that sludge is making people sick, but they haven’t proved it’s safe
either. The issue is murky enough that we should stop spreading sludge, especially
Advisers near residential areas, until the practice has received a clean bill of health. The
latest concerns come from the Virginia Institute of Marine Science (VIMS,)
William H. Draper III which analyzed sludge from 11 sewage-treatment plants across the country. VIMS
Joan Martin-Brown researchers found that samples all contained high levels of brominated diphenyl
ethers, or BDEs, a toxic compound used as a fire retardant in making seat cushions,
Scientific Advisory Council circuit boards and other products; and alkylphenols, chemicals used as detergents
in making paints and pesticides. (Just to be sure, the institute tested sludge from
Gary Hartshorn another 20 sewage plants for BDEs; all were contaminated.) Toxicologists believe
Stephen P. Leatherman BDEs and alkylphenols are endocrine disrupters, meaning they can damage
Jerry R. Schubel reproduction and development in animals. Europe is worried enough about BDEs
Christopher Uhl that it is considering banning them in manufacturing.

Staff BDEs do not easily break down in the environment; rather, they accumu-
late in animals that ingest or are exposed to such chemicals. VIMS scientists found
Roger D. Stone, Director & President BDEs in 87 percent of fish sampled from Virginia waters; one carp had one of the
Shaw Thacher, Project Manager highest contaminated levels ever recorded. It is unclear how such toxins get into
Robert C. Nicholas III, Contr. Editor sewage sludge. However, it is a fact that they have entered the food chain: rising
Megan Ender, Program Associate levels of BDEs have been found in human breast milk. The VIMS findings raise a
Sarah Verhoff, Program Associate red flag about the practice of spreading sludge on farmland. “We don’t think it’s
Anita G. Herrick, Correspondent reasonable to say it is perfectly safe, based on what we found.” Said Rob Hale, an
Laura W. Roper, Correspondent environmental chemist at VIMS.: “I don’t want to be an alarmist, but the jury is still
out on the safety of sludge.”
Major Donors

Avenir Foundation
The Fair Play Foundation
With Appreciation
The Curtis and Edith Munson
Foundation Our warm thanks to Godfrey Rockefeller and to The Moore Charitable
Foundation for their major recent gifts, and to those who between April 20 and
Sponsored Projects June 19, made welcome and most appreciated donations of $50 to $1,000.

Trees for DC Gayle Bauer Wingate Lloyd


John C. Cooper III The ExxonMobil Foundation
Environmental Film Festival in the The Draper Foundation Frani Blount Muser
Nation’s Capital, March 13-23, 2003 Florence Bryan Fowlkes Lydia Petty
Timothy L. Hogen George M. Woodwell
3
People

Midnight Dumpings Working Waterfront, the paper


published by Maine’s Island Insti-
tute, reports a change in leadership
An EPA permit enables the US Army Corps of Engineers to dump
for the schooner Bowdoin. In July
sludge into the Potomac River from various points in the Washington Aqueduct.
Captain Heather Stone and first
Discharge points include several that are close to the Georgetown neighborhood.
mate Jen Haddock will serve as
women commanders for the first time
According to Washington Times reports, private tests of these periodic
in history when the Bowdoin sets sail
dumpings reveal a “who’s who list” of toxic metals including arsenic, lead, mercury,
for summer training. Both women
chromium, copper, zinc, nickel and selenium. Some concentrations, the tests
have worked for the Sea Education
indicated, far exceed legal limits. The tests were conducted at the request of Rep.
Association (SEA). Said Stone:
George P. Radanovich (R-CA), who told the Times he is “appalled” that federal
“Teaching here is a dramatic and
agencies would allow discharges containing such dangerous quantities of toxic
hands on experience. Students who
metals. One tested sample was said to contain arsenic levels from 14-87 times the
haven’t had much experience learn
recommended limit for human health.
how a boat works, through the visual
mode of learning. Then when students
Aqueduct officials deny that the sediments being dumped present any
do figure out how some part works,
health hazard. According to one EPA document, the dumping “actually protects”
there’s success and their eyes light
fish by forcing them away from polluted areas and fishermen. Nonetheless,
up.”
Radanovich is pressing on with his investigation into why the disputed sludge is
being discharged into an American Heritage river that is also part of a national park
Hamp Shuping has been selected as
and a habitat for such endangered species as the Atlantic sturgeon. The National
Waccamaw Riverkeeper, reports the
Wilderness Institute is suing the EPA to stop the discharges on the grounds that
Winyah Rivers Foundation.
they violate the Endangered Species Act. URL: www.washingtontimes.com
Shuping will organize volunteers and
educational programs aimed at
protecting the health of the
Saving the Skipjack Waccamaw through its 112 mile path
from Lake Waccamaw to Winyah Bay.
Few traditional watercraft have won the lore and mystique surrounding One of the problems with the
the Chesapeake Bay’s engineless, oyster-dredging skipjack sailing vessels. Once Waccamaw river has been its division
numbering about 1,000 at the height of the Bay’s oyster harvest a century ago, between two states, with scientific and
these long-boomed, shoal draft sailboats have declined along with the oysters environmental research projects
themselves. limited to either North Carolina or
South Carolina. As riverkeeper,
Only some 15 remain in the working fleet, and of these many have deterio- Shuping views the region as one
rated as maintenance costs have risen while the catch continues to drop. Forecasts entire watershed rather than two.
of the commercial skipjack’s complete extinction (some better-kept skipjacks have Another priority for Shuping is a
engines and are used for educational purposes) have become frequent. landfill, proposed at Green Swamp,
located right next to Lake Waccamaw.
This spring the National Trust for Historic Preservation gave the URL: www.winyahrivers.org
beleaguered vessel a big boost by listing it as among “America’s 11 Most Endan-
gered Historic Places.” The accolade triggered a flood of media attention including a The Consortium for Oceano-
large color photograph in the New York Times. So many press inquiries came graphic Research and Education
suddenly to the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum that interviews left its (CORE) announced the appointment of
skipjack restoration director, Michael Vlahovich, temporarily speechless. Rear Admiral Richard W. West,
USN, as its new president. Since
Along with the National Trust’s designation came a grant of $25,000 to the 1999, West has managed a $400
museum, located in the town of St. Michael’s on Maryland’s Eastern Shore, for million program for the Navy provid-
skipjack restoration work. In various stages of repair by museum craftsmen and ing oceanographic, meteorological,
volunteers are four boats including one, the Lady Katie, that was recently refloated geospatial information and naviga-
after extensive hull work. tional support. Said West: “Ocean
research and education are absolutely
But, says Vlahovich, far more money is needed to keep the fleet alive: it fundamental to the future economic
costs an average $150,000 to do a full restoration on a typical working skipjack built stability and security of our nation, as
in the 1950s and under-maintained ever since. His museum’s development depart- well as to the preservation of our
ment and a state-convened group, the Save Our Skipjacks Task Force, are marine environment and protection of
intensifying their efforts to generate tax-deductible contributions for skipjack its resources.” URL:
restoration. The task force also continues to lobby for rules favoring the landmark www.coreocean.org
skipjacks in the intense struggle among Chesapeake watermen to make money by
harvesting the Bay’s scant remaining supply of healthy oysters. URLs: On June 3, Harrison Ford piloted his
www.nationaltrust.org, www.cbnm.org helicopter along the Hudson River in
4
support of Riverkeeper’s program
Aerial Watch Dog, which seeks to track
pollution in the air and on the ground.
During the flight, which covered over Publications
120 miles from NYC to Hudson, NY,
Ford, photographer Timothy White z At Sea in the City: New York From the Water’s Edge, by William
and Riverkeeper members Alex Kornblum (Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill, 2002) is an engaging account of cruises
Matheson and Basal Sagas located in and around the city’s waterways aboard a beat-up old 24-foot Crosby catboat.
over 15 polluted sites from the air. The author is a native New Yorker who once worked as a union laborer on con-
URL: www.riverkeeper.org struction projects along the East River and currently teaches sociology at the City
University of New York. He deftly blends history, adventure, and the sheer love of
Awards small-boating—especially in the region’s dankest channels and oiliest byways—into
a lively set of insights about how the city looks and feels from the water up.
US Army reservist Staff Sergeant
William Moulden, a schoolteacher in z Among new titles announced by the International Ecotourism Society
civilian life, recently returned from a is an electronic book entitled Marine Ecotourism: Impacts, International
tour of military duty in central Asia to Guidelines and Best Practice Case Studies. Prepared by Elizabeth
his home in Maryland. Awaiting him Halpenny, the book is based on extensive research and covers a broad range of
were two awards: one a designation concerns in the field of marine ecotourism. The work is available on the net or as a
from Governor Parris N. PDF file on CD-ROM. URL: www.ecotourism.org/membooks
Glendening as an Admiral of the
Chesapeake, the other the annual z Among the Atlantic seaboard’s most beautiful and least known rivers is the
Tawes Award for a Clean Environment Susquehanna. 444 miles in length from upstate New York to the Chesapeake Bay,
sponsored by the Maryland Depart- the river is shallow, hard to navigate, and temperamental. Much about it is to be
ment of the Environment and the found in Down the Susquehanna to the Chesapeake (Pennsylvania State
Maryland Petroleum Council. University Press, 2002) by journalist Jack Brubaker. According to Washington Post
Sergeant Moulden was honored for columnist JonathanYardley, this is a “handsomely published” and “meticulous and
helping to protect diamondback loving description” of a river that merits more attention.
terrapins, working with students on
oyster conservation projects, and z New from the Narragansett Bay Estuary Program is a colorful, informa-
founding a program for elementary tive, and comprehensive atlas of wildlife habitats in the bay and its watersheds.
schoolchildren to conduct research and Scientifically correct but also user-friendly for the general public, this well illustrated
conservation projects along the work contains a wealth of information about the region that should lead to better
Severn River. decision-making about development. The atlas comes free. URL: www.nbep.org

EPA received the Coastal America


Award from the Council on Environ-
mental Quality for fish restoration
Schooner Skipper Cleared
efforts along the Cooper River in New
Jersey. The project involved the Soundings reports that this past March Captain Neal Parker was cleared
installation of two fishways to allow of all charges that he assaulted a jet skier who was threatening his schooner, the
migratory access to historic spawning Wendameen, near Maine’s North Haven Island. Maine administrative law Judge
and foraging habitats. Access was Peter A. Fitzpatrick ruled that “the Coast Guard has failed to prove that Capt.
restored to more then ten miles of Parker assaulted the jet ski operator. Indeed, the evidence on this record shows that
mainstream river tributaries. Mr. Marves (jet ski driver) may have assaulted the captain and others aboard.”

Robert “Bob” Hawksley, past The “assault” charges were made after Parker fired an antique pistol,
chairman for the Glocester Land loaded with a percussion cap, toward the water to warn off a jet ski aimed on a high
Trust, received the first annual Peter speed course to collide with the Wendameen. The schooner was at anchor, on July
Merritt award for his work in protect- 25, 2001, with seven passengers and crew about to eat dinner on deck, when a jet
ing land in Rhode Island from develop- skier proceeded with actions the court described as high-speed, unsafe and
ment. While chair, Hawksley was able harassing maneuvers.” After Parker fired his warning shot, the jet skier stopped
to secure 1,100 acres of land along- approximately 10 feet away from the schooner and “threatened to do bodily harm”
side already protected land to create to the schooner’s passengers.
an 1,800-acre greenway.
The court’s decision ended a long ordeal that threatened the loss of
The Daytona Beach News Journal Parker’s mariner’s license, which he needs to sustain his livelihood. In the decision,
reported that the Halifax/Indian Judge Fitzpatrick noted that Parker had held his captain’s license for 25 years
River Task Force had given Kathy without any violations, and that Parker had a superb reputation as a professional
Marsh a Friends of the River award seafarer. Linked with the jet ski incident, Parker was found to have violated Coast
for her help in protecting endangered Guard regulations by failing to get approval to carry black powder aboard the
manatees. Marsh spent much of her schooner. This transgression gave cause for Judge Fitzpatrick to issue Parker a
sentence of six months probation. URL: www.soundingsonline.com
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time last year working to develop a
plan of how to balance marina
development in Volusia County with
Boat Adoption Gathers Steam manatee protection.

In New England an unusual collaboration between fishermen and educa- A 2002 National Wetlands Award for
tors, the Adopt-a-Boat program, is showing early signs of success. This effort, says Outstanding Wetlands Program
Two if by Sea, a newsletter published jointly by the MIT and Woods Hole Oceano- Development, co-sponsored by the
graphic Institute (WHOI) Sea Grant programs, “uses commercial fishing boats as Environmental Law Institute and
a vehicle for teaching K-12 students about marine resource utilization, marine several public agencies, went to
ecology, and life as a fisherman.” Christy Foote-Smith. As director of
the Massachusetts Wetlands
Ten schools and 8 boats are enrolled in the project, which extends geo- Restoration Program in the state’s
graphically from Massachusetts to Maine’s mid-coast. A variety of classroom and environment department, Foote-
boat interactions takes place within each partnership. Many include analysis by Smith has worked with government,
students of information the fishermen collect and transmit electronically to the corporations and individuals on a
school. Eleventh graders at the Essex Agricultural High School in Massachusetts, broad variety of wetlands restoration
for example, have been using catch data compiled by Nino Randazzo, captain of projects. URL:
the Gloucester-based Skimmer, to develop hypotheses about sustainable fishery www.mass.gov\enzir\mwrp
management in the Gulf of Maine.
Species & Habitats
Both the fishermen and the schools get compensated for time spent on the
project, which is funded by the federally-supported Northeast Consortium: the The introduction of 1 million Asian
University of New Hampshire, WHOI, the University of Maine, and MIT. oysters to the Chesapeake Bay, to be
Costs of such materials as digital cameras, electronic data collection and transmis- implemented by the Virginia Insti-
sion equipment, and nautical charts are also covered. tute of Marine Sciences and
vigorously pursued by the Virginia
The program’s initial 2001-2002 year has resulted in widening popularity. Seafood Council, a private agency,
All first year classes have signed up to participate again. Sponsors hope to include has been put on hold. An experiment
a total of 100 classrooms for the 2002-2003 academic year. Said Cliff Goudey, an with 60,000 of the non-native bivalves,
adviser to MIT’s Sea Grant program: “It was an idea whose time had come or was which are not susceptible to the
way overdue.” Interest in launching similar programs has been expressed in New diseases MSX and Dermo that have
Jersey, Florida, and Alaska. URL: www.adoptaboat.org decimated the local variety, was a
culinary success. But then it was
learned that between 10,000 and
New Troubles for Atlantic Salmon 20,000 of the introduced species
would probably retain their reproduc-
tive capacities despite a chemical
This spring, Bill Taylor of the Atlantic Salmon Federation reported a
treatment designed to sterilize all of
modest increase in the numbers of wild Atlantic salmon entering North American
them. Other scientists demanded that
rivers. The total, he said, was some 568,000 fish—up from only 445,000 in 1997.
Virginia stop. It did.
Taylor’s further contention that the Atlantic salmon remains in very serious trouble
was confirmed by several other new reports:
Currently underway in Virginia is the
most ambitious effort ever undertaken
· Rising air and water temperatures, said Defenders of Wildlife and the
to document the effects of golf
Natural Resources Defense Council, could reduce habitats for many
courses on birds. With guidance from
cold water loving species of salmon and trout and cause them to disappear
biologist Daniel A. Cristol at William
entirely from many US waterways during the current century.
and Mary College, reports the
· Despite the dangers that salmon farming poses to wild salmon, from
Associated Press, some 100 amateur
diseases in the cages to the occupation of spawning habitats by farmed
birdwatchers have been monitoring
fish that escaped from the nets, salmon aquaculture remains overwhelm-
and recording bird activity on 100 of
ingly popular among Maine citizens. A recent telephone poll of 275 Maine
the state’s 350 golf courses. With
adults, reports Downeast Coastal Press, revealed 78% approval of salmon
data in hand, including comprehensive
farming and only 3% opposed. “Mainers champion the future of this
information on “how well the birds are
industry,” said Dana Connors, president of the Maine Chamber of
doing breeding-wise,” as Cristol puts it,
Commerce.
he and graduate student Josh
· Taylor himself could award the Canadian government no better than an
LeClerc will seek answers to the hotly
overall C- grade for its current efforts to protect Atlantic salmon after a
debated general question of whether
careful examination of the record in partnership with 120 river conserva-
golf courses are good or bad for birds.
tion groups in eastern Canada. While the US has passed legislation
The probable answer, which will be of
according Atlantic salmon protection as endangered species, the Canadian
interest both to birders and to golf
populations enjoy no such benefits.
course managers: some of both.
URLs: www.asf.ca, www.nationalpost.com, www.nrdc.org, www.defenders.org
6
Restorations

The latest threat to New Jersey’s Wade-Ins Proliferate


long-mistreated Meadowlands, the
large swamp across the Hudson Since 1988 C. Bernard “Bernie” Fowler, a former Maryland state
from Manhattan, comes in the form senator, has been making annual walks from the town of Broomes Island into the
of a proposal to develop a large Patuxent River to test the water’s clarity. In 1988 Fowler lost sight of his white
portion of it into a giant office, sneakers when they were barely 10 inches beneath the surface. This year’s index
shopping and entertainment reached over 42 inches, well up from last year’s 31 inches. Drought conditions may
complex. Newly countering this have helped. No matter how unscientific, the “Bernie Fowler Sneaker Index” has
initiative is another, reports the become a widely heralded measure of the effectiveness of sewage treatment and
Bergen Record, to create of all 8,500 other measures to improve water quality.
undeveloped acres on the site, a
$500 million “Meadowlands Envi- This year Fowler’s effort was replicated in Annapolis, where Mayor Ellen
ronmental Park.” It would restore Moyer led a wade-in and others sampled the water clarity of several creeks.
previous damage and leave the Waders also dipped into the waters of Baltimore’s Inner Harbor and Herring Bay on
region forever wild for use by the Chesapeake. In Virginia, David Brickley, former director of the Virginia
hikers, paddlers, and researchers. Department of Conservation and Recreation, tested the Potomac for the first
US Rep. Steve Rothman (D- NJ) time. Wading in along with eight other people at Leesylvania State Park, 25 miles
expresses confidence that the downriver from Washington, Brickley lost sight of his sneakers in water barely more
required funds can be raised from than ankle deep—perhaps because of windy conditions stirring up the mud. His son
sources including the federal Chad, 2, made it in to his knees.
government, the Port Authority of
New York, the New Jersey Mead- The point about such initiatives, reported Potomacnews.com, is not so
owlands Commission, the state much to achieve precise documentation. Said Brinkley: it is to develop among
of New Jersey, and the Mills citizens “an appreciation and awareness of how important water quality is.” URL:
Corporation that aspires to http://info.mgnetwork.com
develop part of the swampland. The
hope is that Mills would swap the
swampland it owns for the right to
build on already partially developed Bahamas Parks Expansion
property elsewhere in the Meadow-
lands. URL: www.bergen.com At the 43rd meeting of the Bahamas National Trust, Prime Minister
Hubert Ingraham announced the establishment of 10 new national parks, expand-
Report Cards ing total holdings from 320,000 acres to 650,000 acres and covering a great
diversity of habitats. Mr. Ingraham, called “the most conservation minded political
As media gear up for the seasonal leader the Bahamas has known” by a Trust spokesperson, cited the work of the
frenzy of shark attack reports, the Trust in making the entire Exuma Cays Land & Sea Park a no-take fisheries replen-
International Shark Attack File at the ishment area the first of its kind in the Caribbean. Consequences of this action,
University of Florida issued the taken in 1986, include a conch population in the park 31 times greater than that
following statistics for 1996 as outside, replenishment of grouper stocks as far as 150 miles distant, and spiny
compiled by their own research and lobsters 70 miles away. These achievements were cited by the Prime Minister as
the US Consumer Product critical to a government policy decision in 2000 to protect 20% of the Bahamian
Safety Commission: marine ecosystem.
Americans hurt by ladders: 138,984
Americans hurt by toilets: 43,687
Americans hurt by room deodoriz-
ers: 2,559
Protection for Slime Eel?
Americans killed or injured by
sharks: 18 In Gloucester, Massachusetts, reports the Boston Globe, the hunt is on for
the pinkish-grey slime eel. It is said to attack its prey by shooting suffocating globs
URL: flmnh.ufl.edu
of mucus and then entering its victims via the digestive tract to consume them from
the inside. But the hagfish, as it is known in Korea, is a popular item there, both for
Virginia’s Department of Environ- its flesh and its skin which is made into leather. In 1991 the National Marine
mental Quality investigators Fisheries Service subsidized fishermen to pursue the eels in lieu of cod. Today,
recently discovered a cache of up to numerous local fishing boats and two factory ships are on the prowl for the eel. But
100,000 used tires at the Matthews the catch close to shore has declined already and hagfishermen have petitioned the
& Sons Junkyard in Deep Creek New England Fisheries Management Council to set limits. This will take some
near Virginia’s Great Dismal Swamp time due to a lack of scientific data on the mud burrowing creatures. Doug
National Wildlife refuge. The site, Hopkins, a member of the council and of Environmental Defense points to a
which according to department disconnect between government efforts to find new commercial species and their
records harbored only about 9,000 belated regulation. URLs: www.boston.com, www.environmentaldefense.org
tires in 1998, is deemed a public
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health hazard because it attracts
disease-carrying mosquitoes; possible
fines could amount to $25,000 a day.
Courts & the Seashore No one could tell a Virginian-Pilot
reporter how all those tires got there.
In a major blow to the property rights movement, the US Supreme Court
upheld the right of state and local governments to impose development moratoria In its annual scorecard, the Natural
affecting private property. Resources Council of Maine
awarded the state legislature ratings
In a case revolving around landowners temporarily kept from developing indicating major swings between plus
Lake Tahoe shoreline, the court ruled 6-3 that the Constitution does not mandate and minus. The lawmen got an “A” for
compensation. While pointing out that legislative remedies are suggested, Justice beating back half a dozen “bad” bills, a
John Paul Stevens wrote, “A rule that required compensation for every delay in “D” for kowtowing to forest industry
the use of property would render routine government processes prohibitively lobbyists. One bill the legislature killed
expensive or encourage hasty decision-making.” called for tighter tree harvesting
standards in riparian areas with high
The Tahoe Sierra Preservation Council v.Tahoe Regional Planning Agency ecological value. URL:
decision further defined takings in light of two prior Supreme Court cases along the www.maineenvironment.org
Atlantic. In the landmark 1992 Lucas v. South Carolina Coastal Council, coastal
protection regulations were found to be a regulatory taking, permanently depriving Products
a landowner of economic viability. Last year, Palazollo v. Rhode Island was re-
manded to Rhode Island’s Supreme Court to determine whether a taking had Virginia is testing the “smog dog,” an
occurred, given that wetland regulations existed prior to the purchase of property. invisible light beam that precisely
measures the amount of pollution
Justice Stevens highlighted the Fifth Amendment differences: “Land use emitting from passing tailpipes. A
regulations are ubiquitous and most of them impact property values in some camera then snaps a photo of the
tangential way – often in completely unanticipated ways. Treating them all as per vehicle’s license plate. Since a small
se takings would transform government regulation into a luxury few governments percentage of vehicles accounts for a
could afford. By contrast, physical appropriations are relatively rare, easily large portion of all tailpipe pollution,
identified, and usually represent a greater affront to individual property rights.” Virginia officials hope that using the
smog dog will enable the state to
Said Lora Lucero, staff attorney for the American Planning Associa- avoid taking more drastic action to
tion: “This is the best victory for planning in more than a decade.” URL: control worsening air quality. Manu-
www.planning.org facturer of the dog is Environmental
Systems Products, Inc. of Granby,
CT. URL: www.environmental-
Daniel Island, Continued from p. 1 systems.com

This is the season when people slather


Over time anti-Gateway voices came to speak the loudest at public vast quantities of the weed killer 2,4-D
hearings on the matter, and prominent politicians including Charleston’s mayor and on grassy areas. The chemical kills
city council declared their opposition to the Daniel Island proposal. By late 2001, plants such as dandelions, reports the
despite some politicians’ efforts to revive it, the plan had been effectively removed Los AngelesTimes, by overwhelming
from the table, and the Ports Authority was seeking alternative locations to expand their hormone systems. EPA has
its terminal facilities. previously declared that the herbicide
is not harmful to humans.That ruling is
The issue was finally resolved this spring when Governor Jim Hodges now under review. A decision is due
signed legislation, due to come into effect on July 1, awarding the authority the in 2 years.
southern end of the old Charleston naval base, on the mainland, as the designated
site for a new container port.
Funding
The Navy base was closed in 1996. Many voices heralded the selection of
The Long Island Sound License
this brownfield location as an excellent solution evoking the principle of “adaptive
Plate Fund announced 23 grants
reuse” for already degraded land. Says Lachlan McIntosh of the South Caro-
totaling $390,573. The grants are
lina Coastal Conservation League, a leader in the campaign to protect Daniel
awarded to projects that help pre-
Island: “This is a major major win for almost everybody other than the Ports
serve, protect and enhance public
Authority, which suffers a loss of pride. The new legislation definitively takes Daniel
access to the Sound. Grants fall under
Island off the table. It all happened because of an amazing grass roots campaign
four different categories: Public
that created a broad alliance.”
Access, Education and Outreach,
Research and Habitat Restoration.
The remaining question is whether the real estate developers will adhere
Application forms for 2003 grants will
to environmentally sensitive practices. URLs: www.scccl.org,
be available in January. URL:
www.danielisland.com.
www.dep.state.ct.us/olisp/licplate.htm
Atlantic CoastWatch
Sustainable Development Institute
3121 South St., NW
Washington, D.C. 20007

Tel: (202) 338-1017


Fax: (202) 337-9639
E-mail: susdev@igc.org
URL: www.susdev.org
www.atlanticcoastwatch.org

Tax-deductible contributions for Atlantic CoastWatch are urgently needed.

Rather than start its own marine Upcoming Events


science program, Florida’s legislature
recently decided to build on existing July 1-3. American Water Resources Association Summer Specialty Confer-
strength in the private sector. It voted ence: Ground Water/Surface Water Interactions, Keystone, CO. URL:
to allocate Florida Atlantic Univer- www.awra.org/meetings/Colorado2002/
sity $11 million to build a new educa-
tion and marine science building, and July 10-12. Defending the Integrity of Ground Water: Understanding the
the Harbor Branch Oceanographic Impacts of Natural and Manmade Disasters, A Conference on Water
Institution in Fort Pierce $750,000 to Security, Washington, DC. URL: www.ngwa.org.education/seccon.htm
bolster its education program. State
educators and legislators, and July 13-17. Soil and Water Conservation Society Annual Conference,
environmental leaders spoke of Indianapolis, IN. URL: www.swcs.org/t what2002conffrontpage.htm
synergy and efficiency. URLs:
www.fau.edu, www.hboi.edu July 15. 3rd Annual State-of-Maine’s Beaches Conference, Saco, ME. URL:
http://www.seagrant.umaine.edu/
NOAA is seeking proposals for coral
reef conservation projects in the US July 21-23. 1st Annual Public Participation GIS Conference, New Brunswick,
and around the world. Grants are NJ. URL: www.urisa.org/ppgis.htm
available for coral reef management
and monitoring in US states and July 24-26. Remediation of Contaminated Solids and Water Workshop, W.
territories, research into new monitor- Gainesville, FL. URL: htttp://secure.ces.fau.edu/rcsw/
ing technologies and coral reef fishery
management plans, and general coral August 8-10. 3rd Annual Indoor Air Quality Tools for Schools Symposium,
reef conservation in US waters and Washington, DC. URL: www.epa.gov/iga/schools/
for international coral reef conserva-
tion. The grant program is part of August 24-25. SolFest 2002: 7th Annual Solar and Good Living Festival,
NOAA’s Coral Reef Conservation Hopeland, CA. URL: www.solarliving.org
Program designed to protect and
restore the nation’s coral reefs, and September 20. The Georgia Conservancy: Saving Georgia’s Landscape, A
assist international conservation of Call To Action, Atlanta, GA. URL: www.georgiaconservancy.org
reef ecosystems. URL:
www.coralreef.noaa.gov September 24-26. Chesapeake Bay Watershed Restoration Conference:
Reparation and Wetland Stewardship, Baltimore, MD. URL: www.potomac.org