Monthly e-news from the Lower Raritan Watershed Partnership
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September 2016 - Vol. 2, Issue 9
Dear Friends of the Lower Raritan Watershed-

As I write this (and despite present drizzles) most of the Lower Raritan Watershed is under a Drought Watch, with the NJ Department of Environmental Protection urging voluntary water-use reductions as dry conditions persist. While we are keen to slake our thirst here in New Jersey, on August 12 & 13 almost two feet of rain fell throughout parts of Louisiana. This prompted historic, record-level flooding with over 100,000 homes damaged and tens of thousands of people displaced.

The situation in the Bayou State is a reminder of the need for proactive water management in the Garden State. So too is a sobering analysis published August 2 by the real estate data firm Zillow. Zillow factored in new research findings regarding the speed of Antarctic ice loss to predict a six foot global sea level rise by 2100. It then conducted an assessment of this impact of sea level change on housing nationwide. Did you know that after Florida, New Jersey is the US state predicted to have the next highest number of homes flooded by sea water by 2100? According to Zillow the effects of rising sea levels could put a whopping 190,429 Garden State homes under water by the end of the century

The LRWP is convinced that New Jersey has what it takes to become a testing ground for innovative water management projects that can help address the impacts of precipitation-based and coastal flooding, as well as myriad other issues. We know that Green Infrastructure  (GI) projects can benefit environmental restoration and improve water quality. GI can generate jobs, help reduce greenhouse gas emissions and provide opportunities for energy capture. GI can also help connect fragmented habitat and make New Jersey a better place to live by improving opportunities for residents to connect with park and recreation lands.

We will be discussing Green Infrastructure at the LRWP general meeting on September 20, to be held in the CDM Smith Edison offices from 9:30-11:30 AM. CDM Smith will provide a live overview of the NYC Green HUB tool developed as a GI Project Tracking and Assessment Management System for the NYC DEP Office of Green Infrastructure. This meeting is co-sponsored by the JerseyWaterWorks Green Infrastructure sub-committee, of which the LRWP is a member. Please join us!

See you in the watershed,

Heather Fenyk, President
Lower Raritan Watershed Partnership
Sept 11 Clean Up - Mile Run Brook
Please join the LRWP and coLAB Arts on Sunday Sept 11 from 10AM to 1PM for our 3rd Annual Sculpture Project Clean-up! Items found will be given to local artists to be made into sculptures to be displayed in local venues. Meet at 16 Woodbridge St., NB at 10AM. Photo: Highland Park High School artwork made from trash collected along along the Raritan River.
August Water Quality Findings
Low tide at the full moon reveals unexpected treasures: oysters! At 35th Street Bridge, Perth Amboy. Photo captured by NY/NJ Baykeeper's Mitch Mickley during pathogens monitoring. Water quality tests this month have indicated a gradual decrease in dissolved oxygen (which in part explains the huge fish kills in Raritan Bay), but CONDITIONAL pathogens tests indicate that sites are safe for swimming per NJDEP regs. As always, exercise good judgement in the water and wash after contact.
Do you have a Raritan River Story?
The LRWP and coLAB arts are collecting 250-word stories on two themes: ¿Qué significa el río para mi? What does the river mean to me? OR ¿Cuáles son algunas de las memorias que tengo relacionadas al agua? What are my memories of being near or interacting with water? Stories will be given to artists who will perform/interpret them at the coLAB Arts immersive "Watershed Moment" event on October 1. Submit your stories through the coLAB website.
Watershed Sculpture Project 2016 Call for Proposals
coLAB ARTS and the Lower Raritan Watershed Partnership are seeking submissions for proposals for new works of found object sculpture using items of trash collected during clean-ups. This years theme is "frames." Proposal deadline: September 10, art install September 25.
August 2016 blog posts
Lots of new posts on the LRWP blog including Joseph Sapia's August Garden & Afield report, a post by Brielle Tiger about her Girl Scout Cadette project pollinator garden, an overview of the Green Infrastructure concept plan for the New Brunswick Free Public Library, Maya Fenyk's recognition of the 100th anniversary of the Matawan Creek shark attacks, and two of Joe Mish's absolutely wonderful reflections on the natural world of Central New Jersey (post one, post two). Photo by Joe Mish.
September-October Calendar
Sept 11 - 3rd Annual "Found in the Watershed" Clean-up at New Brunswick's One Mile Run Brook

Sept 12 - CANCELLED: tour of the Fords Avenue Wetlands Restoration Project

Sept 20 - LRWP meeting at CDM Smith Offices, 9:30-11:30 AM

Sept 21 - LRWP at Middlesex County Sustainable Hub Workshop

Sept 25 - Raritan River Festival in New Brunswick's Boyd Park

Oct 14-15 - Macroinvertebrate Training at Rutgers Gardens

October 18 - LRWP Meeting in Middlesex County Planning Offices

October 25 - Watershed Sculpture Project Gallery Opening

**You might still catch the Highland Park High School gallery install in the Highland Park library through September - Found Object Art at Highland Park's Public Library Main Hall Display Case, 31 North Fifth, Highland Park, NJ

Volunteers Needed!
The LRWP needs help with: grant-writing, tabling and outreach at events, and spearheading a monofiliament recycling station installation project (perfect for a Girl/Boy Scout Troop). Please contact Heather: hfenyk AT lowerraritanwatershed DOT org

Partner Events
Save The Date! On October 1 from 5-9 pm coLAB Arts will host their annual gala - this year focused on the Lower Raritan Watershed!! From coLAB: "A WATERSHED MOMENT is an immersive visual and performance art experience that embraces our re-connection to the Raritan River." For more information.

Central Jersey Stream Team's 2016 clean-up dates:
September 24 (Sat)
October 22 (Sat)
November 12 (Sat)
December 3 (Sat)

In the News
Two River Times ran a nice piece on the LRWP's NoWaterNoLife partner, Alison M. Jones, and the work she is doing to connect upriver/downriver activities.
Copyright © 2016 Lower Raritan Watershed Partnership, All rights reserved.

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