Saturday, November 13, 2010

SJBEP at National Conference/ Gap analysis revision/ Seagrass restoration project

Pictures: 1) At ANEP 2010 Conference: Judy Kelly, Director, San Francisco Estuary Partnership; Dr. Shelly Luce, Executive Director, Santa Monica Bay Restoration Commission; and Dr. Bernice Smith, Branch Chief, Coastal Management Branch, EPA. 2) Several beautiful dolphins said hi to attendees at a field trip on the Charlotte Harbor Estuary at ANEP 2010 Conference.

Weekly update for November 7, 2010 to November 13, 2010 is as follow:

2) Red flag on raw sanitary discharge at the Suarez Canal: Captain Omar Orraca sent an email communication with photographs to local reporter Susan Soltero and several environmental leaders, including the SJBEP, to inform about a serious raw sewage discharge on the Suarez Canal, near the Baldorioty de Castro area. The Environmental Quality Board is investigating the claim.

3) CCMP Revision:
Brenda Torres, a member of the Board of Directors and past Executive Director of the SJBEP, expressed Javier Laureano her interest in joining the CCMP revision. We are very grateful since her expertise will be key to the revision of several new CCMP actions. To date Dr. Jorge Ortiz and Mayra Vega have been contracted to draft new actions that will be submitted to the Board of Directors. It is crucial that our stakeholders understand the extent of the CCMP revision. Please, follow the link where you will find the new CCMP actions proposed as an addendum to current document:

4) Looking South of the Watershed:
The SJBEP established several new water quality monitoring stations along the upper side of the SJBE’s watershed and included them to the SJBEP’s Water Quality Monitoring Program. Five (5) monitoring stations were identified with the participation of graduate students from the Inter American University and the Center for Education, Conservation and Environmental Interpretation (CECIA). These new monitoring stations will allow a more comprehensive study of our area through the new chemical, biological, and physical characterization of the fresh water sources. The students will visit the stations monthly in coordination and under the supervision of the SJBE monitoring coordinator, Mr. Ernesto Olivares.

5) New M.Sc. thesis evaluates the mangrove planting techniques implemented in the SJBE: The thesis was submitted to our scientific advisor, Dr. Jorge Bauzá, for revision. Diana Ferro, a graduate student from the School of Environmental Affairs of the Metropolitan University, selected and performed as part of her master in sciences degree, an evaluation of the different planting techniques used for the restoration of mangrove in the SJBE. The thesis revision process done by Dr. Jorge Bauzá is part of the commitment and support provided by the SJBEP to the Academia on research projects regarding environmental issues of the SJBE system.

6) SJBEP at the Geography Information System seminar sponsored by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT): Dr. Jorge Bauzá attended the 9th Conference of GIS Users sponsored by MIT. The objective of the seminar was to demonstrate novel GIS technology and to discuss methods and approaches to GIS projects.

7) Collaboration with Dr. Manuel Cedeño, a seagrass restoration and planting expert: Dr. Manuel Cedeño has been offering expertise and training on seagrass restoration methods to the PR Department of Natural and Environmental Resources and the US Fish and Fish Wildlife Services. Our Scientific Advisor, Dr. Jorge Bauzá, is planning a seagrass restoration pilot project in the Condado Lagoon in collaboration with Dr. Manuel Cedeño.

8) Revision of the draft document “Gap Analysis and Recommendations Report of the Caño Martín Peña (CMP)”. The ecological restoration of the Caño Martín Peña (CMP) is one of the key components of the San Juan Bay Estuary (SJBE) system. As the initial step in the Feasibility Report/EIS process, a Gap Analysis and Recommendations Report was completed with the purpose of identifying and addressing gaps in data, studies, and reports. Our Scientific Advisor, Dr. Jorge Bauzá, is a member of the technical committee in charge of revising and evaluating the Feasibility Report and Environmental Impact Statement of the CMP.

9) Estuary’s Green Cinema: The movie "Oceans" will be screened at the Condado Lagoon Park on November 13, 2010. Trailer at: Before the screening several Girls Scouts groups will enjoy a guided pedal boat trip on the Lagoon as well as an educational workshop with Gladys Rivera, our Outreach Coordinator.

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