NH: Rain Gardens - Protect the Great Bay Estuary


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Rain Gardens - Protect the Great Bay Estuary

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NH: Rain Gardens - Protect the Great Bay Estuary

  1. 1. “Your voice for New Hampshire’s coast” NH Coastal Protection PartnershipThe New Hampshire Coastal Protection Partnershipis a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt non-profit organizationworking to reduce water pollution in the Great BayEstuary. Through public outreach and on the groundconservation projects, NH Coast provides seacoastresidents with the resources they need to take actionto mitigate water pollution in their own backyards andcommunities.You can help. Become a Business Member of NHCoast and help us save Great Bay! The Great Bay Estuary o With 144 miles of tidal coastline, the Great Bay Estuary is New Hampshire’s “hidden coast” o The estuary serves as habitat for more than 162 bird, plant, and fish species o 23 of these species were listed as endangered or threatened as of 2003 o The bald eagle, peregrine falcon, Great Blue Heron, Atlantic salmon, oyster, soft shell clam and lobster are just a few of the species that call Great Bay home o Great Bay is one of the largest estuaries in the Atlantic Ocean o The estuary is home to the Great Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve A Great Blue Heron eyes the estuary’s shallow waters in search of fish! NH Coastal Protection Partnership 162 Thornton St. Portsmouth, NH 03801 Phone: (603) 617-0679 Email: info@nhcoast.org www.nhcoast.org
  2. 2. The Great Bay Estuary: An eco-system in declineo NHDES has listed the Bellamy River, Cocheco River, Lamprey River, Salmon Falls River, Oyster River, Piscataqua River & Great Bay as impaired or threatened by water pollutiono Adult oyster populations in Great Bay declined by 92 percent between 1997 and 2009o Eelgrass biomass in the estuary declined by 64 percent between 1990 and 2008o Run-off pollution from lawn fertilizers, leaky septic tanks, and animal waste contributed to a 42 percent increase in the total nitrogen load to Great Bay between 1990 and 2008o Nitrogen pollution can trigger massive algal blooms that consume oxygen and block out sunlight aquatic life needs to survive, leading to a loss of habitat. This deadly process is called eutrophication Before and after photos ofo Experts believe urgent action is needed to a lake impacted by an prevent eutrophication in Great Bay algal bloom Solution #1: NH Coast’s Community Rain Garden Programo Stormwater run-off is a leading source of water pollution in Great Bayo Rain gardens absorb run-off, filtering out pollutants & recharging groundwatero NH Coast is building demonstration rain gardens in New Castle & Portsmouth in 2010o The rain gardens will be planted with native specieso Informational signs and literature will accompany each rain gardeno NH Coast provides seacoast property owners with tips on how to plant a rain garden through our website, workshops, and presentations A rain garden in bloom NH Coastal Protection Partnership 162 Thornton St. Portsmouth, NH 03801 Phone: (603) 617-0679 Email: info@nhcoast.org www.nhcoast.org
  3. 3. Solution #2: NH Coast’s Rain Barrel Programo Rain barrels capture stormwater before it can run-off, helping to reduce run-off pollutiono Rain barrels also conserve water and help people save money on water billso NH Coast volunteers build eco-friendly rain barrels out of recycled food grade plastic drumso Our Rain Barrel Raffles are popular attractions at community events like the Rain barrels conserve Portsmouth Sustainability Fair water and help to reduceo Upcoming events include “How to build a rain run-off pollution barrel” workshopso NH Coast will also be publishing print and online versions of a new “How to build a rain barrel” guide Solution #3: NH Coast’s Nitrogen Reduction Campaigno Nitrogen run-off pollution from household sources like leaky septic systems, lawn fertilizers, and pet waste is contributing to the overall decline of the Great Bay Estuaryo NH Coast’s Nitrogen Reduction Campaign empowers citizens to take action to reduce nitrogen pollution right in their own backyardso Through workshops, direct mailings, publications and our website, NH Coast Leaving grass clippings teaches seacoast residents how to make behind is an eco-friendly estuary friendly decisions about lawn and free way to fertilize fertilization your lawno NH Coast’s staff researches locally available lawn fertilizers and promotes estuary friendly brands NH Coastal Protection Partnership 162 Thornton St. Portsmouth, NH 03801 Phone: (603) 617-0679 Email: info@nhcoast.org www.nhcoast.org