Thursday, September 12, 2013

Help See The Forest and the Trees

September Series Promotes Long-Term Recovery of 
Coastal Communities and Waterways
Events from Issue Forums and Building Rain Barrels to Planting Forests and Gardens

Waves of Action ‘For The Shore’ – September 16-28, 2013

Throughout the month of September, Clean Ocean Action is urging citizens to assist in the long-term recovery of the coast by participating in educational forums, rain barrel and rain garden workshops, and planting native maritime forests through Waves of Action ‘For The Shore.’  Events are being organized by outstanding business and community leaders, and will begin on Monday, September 16 and continue through Saturday, September 28.  Participants can register online at

Seismic Testing Forum

On Monday, September 16, at Monmouth University, Clean Ocean Action will host an educational forum about seismic testing with the national group Oceana, Sandy Hook Sea Life Foundation, and Sierra Club New Jersey. The federal government is considering allowing "seismic surveys" in the Atlantic Ocean - airgun blasts designed to pinpoint offshore oil and gas deposits deep in the seafloor.  From death to deafness, these shockwaves threaten fish and fisheries, whales and dolphins, and the entire marine ecosystem.  To learn more about what you can do to stop this destructive process, attend the forum from 6-8pm in Young Hall at Monmouth University in West Long Branch, NJ.

TEDx Navesink: The Next Wave

The first TEDx event on the Jersey Shore, TEDx Navesink: The Next Wave on Friday, September 20, will feature Clean Ocean Action Executive Director Cindy Zipf, presenting The Clean Ocean Zone — Our Future Ocean.”  Zipf will address the need for a Clean Ocean Zone off New Jersey and New York.  Also speaking is Sean Dixon, Clean Ocean Action Coastal Policy Attorney.  Dixon is providing a talk entitled “Energy Exports: Good, Bad, Ugly, and What you Need to Know.”

Volunteer and Educational Opportunities

On Saturday, September 21, Waves of Action events include:
  • A rain barrel workshop, organized by NJDEP and Clean Ocean Action, in Spring Lake, NJ.  Participants will recycle and modify 55-gallon plastic containers for use as rain barrels and learn how stormwater pollution affects Wreck Pond and other waterways in NJ.  
  •  The Master Gardeners of Monmouth County will host a rain garden talk at Brookdale Community College for event-goers to learn about the benefits of rain gardens for their homes and communities. 
  • Dearborn Market in Holmdel, NJ, is organizing a rain garden workshop for homeowners to learn more about the layout of a rain garden and the many benefits of creating this type of garden in their yard.
  • Coastal clean-ups in Red Bank and Union Beach, NJ.
Volunteers are needed on Saturday, September 28, in Bradley Beach, NJ, to help plant native trees, shrubs and grasses in the newly-created, half-acre maritime forest.  The maritime forest is located between the boardwalk and Ocean Avenue, near Fletcher Lake. Originally, the site was hard-packed and used for summer staff parking, winter storage of beach equipment, temporary staging and provided access to the beach for heavy equipment and emergency vehicles.  Now, the maritime forest is expected to reduce community risk from storms and promote resiliency.

Community project spokesperson Captain Alek Modjeski stated, “The creation and future establishment of this maritime forest will provide a well needed ecosystem that promotes community resilience, reduces risk from storms, and hopefully stimulates a local eco-economy.

“By incorporating green infrastructure and living shorelines into our coastal communities, we not only reduce risk to our community and coastal lake ecosystem but improve local water quality, create individual stewardship, and improve biodiversity. This is a small scale project with large scale application,” Captain Modjeski added.

This September series is a part of Waves of Action ‘For the Shore,’ a one-year program created last December to help respond to the impacts of Superstorm Sandy by improving and protecting the marine environment.  Clean Ocean Action has joined townships, businesses, homeowners, and civic organizations with thousands of volunteers along the shore to help communities most affected by the storm. Since December 2012, community leaders have registered 226 service projects, clean ups, workshops, and outings that have sent over 11,800 volunteers to 70 different towns in New York and New Jersey to help out.

The remaining months include Fall Beach Sweeps on October 19, a focus on schools and educational programs throughout November, and on December 7, the final Waves of Action ‘For the Shore’ event will be a conference reviewing the program, highlighting results and recommendations on next steps.

To sign up for a volunteer project, register a volunteer project or for more information about Waves of Action, visit For a complete list of September projects and locations, click here.

Join Clean Ocean Action on Saturday, December 7, for the Waves of Action Conference and Awards.  COA will celebrate the achievements of the nearly 12,000 volunteers who have worked to improve and protect the marine environment.  For sponsorship information, click here.

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