EYC Environmental Stewardship
Eastport Yacht Club is committed to be an active steward of the club’s local environment and of the Chesapeake Bay by implementing protection and restoration efforts. This commitment includes a variety of efforts such as our installation of a special porous concrete parking lot designed to reduce runoff, hosting Clean Regattas, and becoming the first yacht club in Maryland to have a Clean Marina certification.
EYC's Environmental Initiatives
During EYC’s renovation and expansion in 2012, the Executive Board made the decision to put in a pervious parking lot to reduce the club’s impervious surface area, thereby reducing harmful runoff to the Severn River and the Bay. Our parking lot is so porous that you can’t even create a puddle using a garden hose. The parking lot utilizes three underground cisterns. During heavy rains, excess water flows into the cisterns resulting in gradual drainage into the ground. The concrete is made with locally available and recycled materials, and it is more durable than traditional asphalt, which reduces EYC’s carbon footprint. As the concrete is brighter than traditional asphalt, it decreases the urban heat island effect (decrease in global warming) and decreases lighting needs by 20% to 30% (decrease life-cycle carbon footprint).
In addition to the parking lot, the club has taken several additional actions to reduce our impact on the bay. Rainwater from the club’s roof is collected in rain barrels and is then used to water our native plant gardens which meet Maryland Critical Area Commission regulations. On the dock, a “living” wave wall was installed in 2012 to help protect the boats from chop. This wall includes oysters growing to slow wave movement and to filter the water. We have also installed oyster cages in the marina to support oyster restoration efforts in the Severn River. To assess the effectiveness of the oysters in filtering the water and evaluate our storm water reduction efforts, we have established a water quality monitoring station in the marina. The monitoring of the bacterial levels also ensures that we know if our waters are safe for swimming, paddleboarding and other water-related activities like our Junior Sailing program.
The new Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) rated clubhouse also contributes to the club’s green efforts. LEED provides a framework to create healthy, highly efficient and cost-saving green buildings. The building is spray-insulated underground and in the frame to reduce energy needs in heating and cooling, and the club uses low emission carpet and paint. The kitchen recycles its vegetable oil and uses recyclable and compostable to-go products. The bar recycles the cork from our wine bottles. We also have recycle bins throughout the property (including an oyster shell recovery bin) to encourage club members to recycle.
Despite these valiant efforts in our clubhouse and marina, our membership realized that we can do better. With that in mind, we established a new Environmental Committee (aka “Green Team”) dedicated to implementing best practices for environmental and Bay stewardship. One of the major initiatives of the “Green Team” is to ensure that all regattas are “clean.” By participating in the Sailors for the Sea’s Ocean Conservation program we have effectively reduced our environmental impact. This program includes using multi-use water bottles on the water, recycling and composting at all regatta events and on the water, reducing printed materials, and numerous other best practices. In addition, our Junior Fleet now encourages its sailors to bring reusable water bottles and recycle their waste on an ongoing daily basis. The Junior Fleet has also introduced environmental education programming from Sailors for the Sea in its curriculum and initiated an educational Bay Week Program in 2015. Our Eastport Yacht Club Foundation has also established a Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) youth education program that has environmental and bay stewardship components.
For more information about the Eastport Yacht Club’s environmental efforts or to get involved, please visit the Environmental Committee web page or contact the Chairman of the Environmental Committee at email@example.com.