Would a moratorium solve the blue crab crisis?

This past week, the venerable Angus Phillips – former outdoors columnist for The Washington Post – emerged briefly from retirement to make an angry plea on The Post’s pages: ban crabbing in the Chesapeake Bay. He lamented this summer’s lousy blue crab numbers – foretold by this past winter’s dredge survey – and reminded readers […]

2014 Farm Bill: The dust settles and opportunities emerge

When the 2014 Farm Bill passed this winter, we did our best to sift through a complicated legislative landscape and understand what it meant for conservation.  Some programs disappeared and others merged, forming strange new acronyms. But now that USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) has started implementing these new programs, clear opportunities are emerging. […]

Does the Potomac Pass the Test?

In 2012, the conservation group Americans Rivers ranked the Potomac one of the nation’s most endangered rivers. As 2013 came to a close, the Potomac Conservancy issued a more comprehensive report card with its latest take on the Potomac’s status. Considering five major indicators – fish, habitat, pollution, land and people – the Conservancy awarded […]

Dreaming of a white (and green) Christmas

Love it or hate it, those of us in the northern and western reaches of the Chesapeake Bay watershed have already gotten a lot of snow and ice this December.  Bing Crosby may dream of it, but according to regional biologists, heavy winter precipitation can mean more algal blooms in the Bay this summer.   Runoff […]

Farm Programs Helping to Save the Bay

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) shared some encouraging news last week:  Its most recent analysis of conservation programs in the Chesapeake Bay watershed show that new farming practices are reducing sediment and nutrient loading into waterways.  Federal programs promoted through the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) as well as state, local and private […]