Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Business Stewardship Speaker Series: Tuesday, July 25!


The CMRC will kick-off its Business Stewardship Speaker Series on Tuesday, July 25th from 8:30 AM – 10:00 AM at the Hudson River Foundation. The Speaker Series will showcase the experiences of businesses and conservation organizations working together to implement conservation initiatives in the NY – NJ Harbor Bight. The topic of the first panel event will be: Business Stewardship in the Harbor Estuary: Corporations Leveraging Resources for Coastal Conservation.

The event will include presentations by:

Zipcar – Profitable Business Model that Increases Environmental Quality

NYC Audubon – Fuji Film Harbor Herons Monitoring Project

And more experiences from businesses and conservation organizations!

A 45-minute panel session will be followed by a Q&A with coffee and a light breakfast provided by the CMRC and Hudson River Foundation.

What: Business Stewardship Speaker Series
Where: Hudson River Foundation, lower Manhattan (http://www.hudsonriver.org/)
Date: Tuesday, July 25th
Time: 8:30 AM – 10:00 AM

Space is limited! RSVP to business.stewardship@thecmrc.org to reserve your seat now!!!

For more information on the Business Stewardship Initiative: http://www.thecmrc.org/prog-hbp-bsp.asp


Workgroup Members in Attendance:
Mark Caserta - 3R Living
Porter-Ann Gaines - Metropolitan Waterfront Alliance
Alison Johnson - Credit Suisse
Blake Nicolazzo - Patagonia
Joel Banslaben - Coastal Marine Resource Center

Business Stewardship Initiative
The Business Stewardship Workgroup convened its kick-off meeting on Thursday, May 18, 2006 from 11:00 AM – 1:00 PM at the offices of the Metropolitan Waterfront Alliance (457 Madison Avenue). An agenda and powerpoint overview of the Business Stewardship Initiative were provided to the attendees by Joel Banslaben.

Attendees discussed the success and challenges of the Business Stewardship Workgroup held on February 16th at the Hudson River Foundation. Most thought it was an excellent first step toward creating a dialog on business stewardship in the Harbor Estuary but all acknowledged that the final session on creating the program was less productive than initially envisioned. One of the major successes noted by attendees was the sharing of stewardship experiences between businesses, environmental organizations and government agencies during the various panel discussions.

Alison Johnson (Credit Suisse) presented briefly on the state of philanthropy in corporations in the region. She stated that many of the investment banks were leaning away from simply providing financial contributions and were instead promoting active involvement by employees in different volunteer projects. Some of the larger corporations have developed programs that provide employees with a paid day off work to participate in community service projects.

Blake Nicolazzo (Patagonia) added that at the retail level many companies were actively supporting on-the-ground environmental initiatives with relatively small grants for action-oriented projects. In addition, some retailers are providing their staff with the opportunity to participate in volunteer projects with compensation. Patagonia also provides meeting space for non-profit organizations at its retail locations

Workgroup Objectives and Timeline
Attendees then discussed the development of a Business Stewardship Program for the New York – New Jersey Harbor Estuary and surrounding Bight that leverages financial, operational and human resources for coastal conservation efforts. Major conclusions included focusing on specific coastal issues (habitat, species) and geographic interests (ecosystems, business districts). In addition, a targeted business sector approach was discussed and the following were identified as of interest: corporations, retail, waterfront dependent, real estate development, and restaurants.

The role of the workgroup was then discussed and it was agreed that the workgroup would meet periodically with a goal of defining a Business Stewardship Program by early 2007. The program would include four major activities that include the Business Stewardship Speaker Series, a Business Stewardship Volunteer Network, a “Stewards of the Estuary” recognition program and a business stewardship resource guide. Each workgroup member offered to participate in one or more of the above activities.

Developing the Program
The workgroup decided that the Business Stewardship Speaker Series was the first task to focus on to build on the momentum of the Workshop earlier in the year. Blake Nicolazzo, Emily Farnworth (Environmental Resources Management) and Tony MacDonald (Monmouth University) will all be assisting with the development of the series. Participants suggested that the next event take place in mid July and focus on corporations in the Harbor Estuary. To gather as many attendees as possible a time of 8:30 – 10:00 AM was agreed upon. The session will include presentations of three panel speakers and will be followed by a Q&A afterwards. Future speaker series events were tentatively scheduled for September, November and January and will focus on retail, waterfront dependent, real estate development, and restaurants sectors.

The Business Stewardship Volunteer Network was the next item of discussion. Alison Johnson and Joel Banslaben agreed to work on the development of this component of the Program. The major items of discussion were on how to bring together the resources of the business community with conservation opportunities in the region. Different regions (Gowanus, Hackensack, South Bronx, Queens, Jamaica Bay, Long Island, NJ) were identified as focus areas as were specific habitat/species areas (Harbor Herons, oysters, marshlands). Next steps will be determining how to identify specific businesses and conservation opportunities.

The “Stewards of the Estuary” Recognition Program was discussed briefly and all thought that it was important to provide good press and visibility to make the program work. A goal was set to kick-off the program in early 2007 with first business “Stewards of the Estuary” being identified in fall 2007.

The final activity discussed was the development of the Harbor Estuary Business Stewardship Guide that would be disseminated to local businesses with information about the Harbor Estuary and basic next steps for information about becoming a steward. Mark Caserta (3R Living) and Emily Farnworth will be working to outline the next steps for this effort. Most agreed that it would be best to target the outputs toward specific audiences (i.e. real estate developers, restaurants) and provide the information in a succinct and easy to read format.

The meeting was adjourned at 1:15 PM and attendees agreed to meet next in early July.

In the News: Monkfish captains may face $100G losses

As part of the CMRC's Sustainable Coasts Program, we work to create solutions to the environmental and economic challenges of coastal communities. Sometimes the decisions that are made to conserve aquatic natural resources can have a significant financial impact on those who make a living off the ocean. For the monkfishery, declining numbers of the species led to a limit on the number of days that commerical fisherman could be at sea to 12 days a year. The consequent economic impacts to the fishing community could be in the millions of dollars writes the Asbury Park Press. JB

Asbury Park Press
By Kirk Moore

The latest fishing crisis in New England has spilled into New Jersey waters, where monkfish captains are seeing their permitted work days at sea slashed to just 12 a year.

In a business predicated on 40 days at sea, that means individual boat owners will each lose about $100,000 in revenue this year, estimates Barnegat Light monkfish captain Eric Svelling.

"With about 20 monkfish boats in town, those are small businesses that are going to lose $2 million," Svelling said. That's a big hit in the small fishing community of 800 people at the northern tip of Long Beach Island.

Last week, the Borough Council drew up a resolution urging federal officials and New Jersey's congressional delegation to intervene in the monkfish action. The reduction in fishing time, called days at sea, comes amid draconian cutbacks across the board in New England's cod and related fisheries.

Read more:

Monday, July 17, 2006

CMRC Benefit Raises Awareness for Coastal Conservation and Stewardship

The CMRC Benefit at East River Park on Thursday, July 13th was a huge success! Thank you for your support!!! Congratulations to our "Stewards of the Estuary" Lillian Borrone and Vice Admiral Paul Gaffney (Represented by Urban Coast Institute Director Tony MacDonald).

A Special thanks to our CMRC Benefit Host Moby and Performers Laura Dawn and Daron Murphy!

The CMRC also greatly appreciates the support of our 2006 Benefit Sponsors: Patagonia, Nautica, Brooklyn Beer, Outside Magazine, 3R Living, Leblon Rum, Zipcar, Grant Myrdal Photography, Pure Food and Wine, Jurlique Soho, Rough Guides, Interrupcion, One Lucky Duck Foods and Aveda.

Many thanks to our dedicated volunteers and the event planning firm, Penta Dynamic Solutions. The event raised an amazing amount of awareness for the conservation and restoration issues of the NY - NJ Harbor Bight. The CMRC is dedicated to bringing together the resources necessary for the conservation of our estuaries, oceans, waterfronts and communities for decades to come! JB

More Pictures can be found at:

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

CMRC Benefit With Moby This Thursday July 13th at East River Park!!!

The CMRC and Moby are looking forward to a great celebration of our coasts and oceans this Thursday at East River Park honoring “Stewards of the Estuary” Lillian Borrone and Vice Admiral Paul Gaffney!

If you are haven’t already click here to purchase your tickets today and join in the festivities!!!

Each attendee will receive an awesome gift bag with gear from Patagonia, clothing from Nautica and cool stuff from 3R Living, Outside Magazine, Grant Myrdal Photography, Jurlique, Pure Foods and many, many more!

Directions for the event are below. Feel free to contact us at 646-515-9290 or info@thecmrc.org with questions. JB

The CMRC & Moby cordially invite you…
Click here to purchase tickets

July 13th East River Park Amphitheater

The Coastal Marine Resource Center invites you
to a waterfront celebration!

With Stewards of the Estuary
Lillian Borrone & Admiral Paul Gaffney

Cocktails. Dancing. Hors D’oeuvres.
Live acoustic performance by Moby.
Advance tickets are $100/$125 @ the door

CMRC Benefit Sponsors: Patagonia, Nautica, Outside Magazine, 3R Living, Grant Myrdal Photography, Leblon Rum

Gift Bags from our Sponsors are limited to first 100 tickets!
Click here to purchase tickets

CMRC Benefit Hosting Committee: Robert Bailey, Morgan Rae Berk, Rachel Cardone, Tony MacDonald, Blake Nicolazzo, Dorothy Rosciszewski, Christine Santora


Click here for HOPSTOP.COM directions

Click here to purchase tickets

Friday, July 07, 2006

In the News: Rebuilding Jamaica Bay, One Load of Sand at a Time

Due to a combination of factors including rising ocean levels, increased boat wakes and navigational dredging our marshes and wetlands are disappearing. In Jamaica Bay, which has historically contained some of the largest salt marshes in the NY - NJ Harbor Bight, the rate of habitat loss has been unprecedented with acres of valuable shoreline being lost every year. Fortunately, a collaboration between local environmental groups, elected officials and government agencies has led to a restoration project that will rebuild some of the salt marshes in Jamaica Bay writes the NY Times. JB

By Nicholas Confessore
July 7, 2006

Over the past few decades, for reasons nobody fully understands, the salt marshes of Jamaica Bay have been washing away. The grasses that anchor the bay's island archipelago have slowly withered, leaving the sand to drift off with the tides, the disintegration accelerating as time went on until nearly 50 acres of marsh disappeared with each passing year.

"It was a war of attrition," said Dan Mundy, the founder of the environmental group Jamaica Bay Ecowatchers, as he stood yesterday on Elders Point Island, a marsh island that has shrunk to a fraction of its original size. "Every day, we're losing thousands of square feet."

But during the last month, work began on an ambitious $13 million campaign to rebuild the salt marshes, which would otherwise disappear over the next 15 years if the current rate of attrition were to continue. It is the first major reclamation effort targeted at Jamaica Bay — a 12,000-acre estuary where numerous clam, crab, fish and bird species can be found — and one of the largest environmental projects in the city's history.

"We have to make sure the marshlands and the ecosystem they support are around for future generations," Representative Anthony D. Weiner, a Democrat whose Congressional district includes many neighborhoods in Brooklyn and Queens that ring the bay, said at a news conference and marsh tour yesterday that commemorated the early stages of the reclamation.

Mr. Weiner led efforts to gain financing for the project, a combined effort by the
Army Corps of Engineers, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, the National Park Service and the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.

Read more:

Google Map of Jamaica Bay:

Jamaica Bay Wikipedia Page: