April 2021 Newsletter
Hope you are experiencing this beautiful spring in Accabonac Harbor. Many migratory birds are back. Osprey are sitting on their nests, a pair of eagles has been sighted, buds are emerging and flowers opening.
Make Every Day Earth Day
APC adopted three roads several years ago and more recently we adopted Pussy’s Pond Park. We have been responsible to pick up thoughtlessly discarded litter on Gerard Road, Louse Point Road and Landing Lane and notice a steady increase in litter, including roadside litter.
Some litter comes from trucks with loose loads that are not covered. As the truck speeds up, a vortex develops and the light items such as sheets of plastic and bags are blown on to the roadside, maybe without the awareness of the vehicle’s operator. We are finding bottles and cans on the beach and in parking lots, forgotten remnants of a get together. Then there are coffee cups and food wrappers, likely tossed out a car window. Cigarette filters mar the beach and so tedious to pick. There is construction debris, including chemicals, left on the roadside to avoid a trip to the recycling center. Charred wood from beach fires can be dangerous as it may contain hot embers and the burned wood detracts from the beauty of our beaches. Trash cans overflow with household trash…sadly some of this goes into our waterways where it can be ingested by wildlife often with tragic results.
What can we do?
Much like the anti-smoking campaigns, we will use media to reach people, maybe get a few to think about their behavior and choices when disposing litter.
APC has partnered with Concerned Citizens of Montauk and Dell Cullum of Imagination Nature to design graphics and messages for a full page first ad in the East Hampton Star’s April 22 edition, which happens to be Earth Day. We will engage with other environmental groups and the business community to deliver consistent, targeted messages throughout the year.
As we go out to clean up beaches and roadsides for Earth Day, let’s make a commitment to continue this effort every day. Keep East Hampton Clean.
The next Forum, “A Toast to Summer”, is scheduled for May 18, 2021, 6-7pm. It will be both informative and celebratory, the theme is Birds and Song.
Songbirds and insects are declining drastically throughout the world and our area is no exception. The decline seems to be due to loss of habitat and the use of pesticides. Edwina von Gal will present a new possibility called “2/3 for the Birds”; including suggestions and on-line tools about ways to make our own properties places bird can live and thrive in.
Wolffer Vineyards is partnering with Edwina on a most important project to apply the principles of 2/3 within the vineyard. Learn more about Wolffer’s project and enjoy a virtual tour, maybe with a glass of rose in your hand! The Wolffer team of Emily Ely and Richie Pisacano will be your tour guides.
We will have surprise musical intermezzos throughout the evening. Expert birder, Bruce Horwith, will discuss local birds. Details to follow. You won’t want to miss this special event to kick off the summer!
In the meantime, visit https://www.234birds.org
Excess nitrogen entering our groundwater remains a major issue. In his State of the Bays, 2021 address, Dr. Christopher Gobler, professor at Stony Brook University’s School for Marine and Atmospheric Sciences and Director of the Center for Clean Water Technology, observed that mitigating nitrogen is key to making ecosystems as resilient as possible. Dr. Gobler shared that seaweed holds promise to mitigate impairments such as harmful algal blooms and acidification. Kelp farming can remove nitrogen and carbon dioxide from water and reduce acidification.
Accabonac Harbor is suffering, as every other water body is suffering, from excess nitrogen. APC will support the following research to reduce nitrogen in Accabonac Harbor.
- Sugar kelp pilot: John Barley Dunn, Director of the East Hampton Shellfish Hatchery has proposed a pilot of sugar kelp in Three Mile Harbor to remove and reduce nitrogen. The APC Board of Directors would like to see this piloted in Accabonac Harbor, as well. It will be a small addition to John Barley Dunn’s Three Mile Harbor pilot. We have engaged John Barley Dunn to pilot this exciting nitrogen mitigation in Accabonac Harbor. Sugar kelp grows in the winter, the project will begin in December.
- APC committed support to a Cornell Cooperative Extension project, that is under review, to mitigate ammonium plumes that travel from upland areas and enter Accabonac Harbor near the Springs General Store.
APC believes the investment in these two studies will result in targeted interventions for Accabonac Harbor as soon as possible.
Meet the APC Board
Our board members serve on diverse local committees and advisory groups within the Town of East Hampton which helps us build support and enhances communications.
Founding Board Member of the Art Center at Duck Creek
Board Member of the Springs Improvement Society/Ashawagh Hall
President, Duck Creek Farm Association
Springs Citizen Advisory Committee
Mosquito Sampling and Oyster Farming
Chair, Springs Citizens Advisory Committee
Founding Board Member, Arts Center at Duck Creek
East Hampton Property Management Committee
Creator of Summer of Sculpture, an outdoor sculpture exhibition in Springs
East Hampton Trails Preservation Society
Clearwater Beach Property Owners Association.
Vice Chair, Springs Citizens Advisory Committee
Quail Hill Farm Advisory Committee
Water Quality Technical Advisory Committee member
Community Preservation Fund Advisory Board member
Participate with CCOM water testing program throughout the year for enterococcus by testing 3 sites in Accabonac. This is shared with an APC member, Noreen Bradley.
Springs Citizens Advisory Committee
Rotary Club of East Hampton, Treasurer
Springs Fire Department, Firefighter, Treasurer
We Count on Your Support
Thank you for being a member of Accabonac Protection Committee. Your supporting memberships and donations allow us to sponsor science based educational forums, provide support to research projects including the CCE nitrogen mitigation project and the sugar kelp project and conduct community outreach such as the anti-littering campaign and the recent letter to homeowners in the Accabonac Watershed. With your help, we are well poised to protect Accabonac Harbor and its watersheds.
See you around the Harbor!
Patrice Dalton, President
Please consider becoming a supporting member of the Accabonac Protection Committee with as little as a $20 annual donation. Your APC contributions are now fully tax deductible and as always, greatly appreciated. Donate here: https://accabonac.org/contact-join-donate-1