September 1, 2017: In September, the Environmental Committee will focus on the upcoming EYC Clean Regattas, our water quality monitoring program and an oyster restoration initiative. If you care about the Bay, join us in our efforts! We generally meet the third Wednesday of the month at 6 p.m. at EYC.
Bay water quality is important to all of us. This summer, EYC Junior Sailing Program students monitored key parameters in our marina like water clarity, nutrients and pH utilizing the EYC Foundation’s water quality monitoring module. In addition, beginning in mid-July, we began to measure other parameters like salinity, dissolved oxygen and bacteria in a collaborative effort with Spa Creek Conservancy and Anne Arundel Community College.
Fortunately, the data show that our water quality is relatively good and our bacteria levels are low. Nan Walker. Junior Fleet Program Manager and Kevin Haigis, Spa Creek Conservancy will present the results of the summer monitoring program at EYC and in Spa Creek on August 31st.
Did you know that EYC has a living wave wall? This is a unique structure – perhaps the only one in the state of Maryland. When our marina was renovated, a wave attenuation breakwater was constructed around the marina. It’s made of stacked square shelves placed underwater all around the inside of the marina wall. These shelves hold triangular concrete blocks seeded with baby oysters (called “spat”).
In 2011-2012, about 80 triangles seeded with oysters were placed on the shelves as a test and the oysters grew! Now, we just need to fill up more of these shelves and the Green Team is up to the task. Our friends at the Chesapeake Bay Foundation (CBF) have come to the rescue and are presently seeding a batch of triangles with spat – for free! Thank you, CBF. They value our efforts to build a living wave wall and want to see the project succeed.
Recently, EYC was visited by the Maryland Secretary of the Environment (Mr. Ben Grumbles) and he was impressed with our oyster wall. He said that EYC will now be recognized as the “Environmental Yacht Club!”
Do you want to be involved? Meet the Green Team at EYC at 9 a.m. on Friday, September 8, and you can help put the new oyster filled triangles in the wave wall. Bring work gloves. For those of you sporty enough to get in the water, bring your snorkeling gear.
Additionally, the Green Team is working with the EYC Board to get a “green light” to grow oysters in cages through the Marylanders Grow Oysters program to help build a Severn River oyster sanctuary. Go oysters!