Environmental Division at NAS Patuxent River
Environmental Division at NAS Patuxent River.
Known for its award-winning community service and environmental stewardship programs, the Environmental Division at NAS Patuxent River manages a robust environmental education program aboard the installation.
Multiple partnerships with private sector and government agencies have been successful in advancing environmental compliance, conservation and education.
• Land Management: Inventory, monitoring, and protection of wetlands, rare plant species; monitoring and control of invasive plant species; 500 acre agricultural outlease; enhancement of pollinator habitat, prescribed burning; implementation of Chesapeake Bay initiatives and other coastal zone programs • Forest Management: Firewood program, timber sales, fire management and suppression (including controlled burning), forest pest monitoring and control activities • Fisheries Management: Recreational fishing program, inventory and monitoring of non-game species, monitoring and control of invasive fish species, monitoring of submerged aquatic vegetation, oyster restoration • Wildlife Management: Monitoring and protection of rare animal species, Bird/Animal Aircraft Strike Hazard (BASH), construction of artificial nesting structures and other habitat improvements, monitoring of migratory birds and other wildlife, recreational harvesting of game species • Outdoor Recreation Management: Administer hunting, fishing, trapping, shell-fishing, hiking, and firewood cutting programs • Environmental Education: Maintain and operate an Environmental Education Center, conduct environmental education and community outreach programs, educate station personnel about biological hazards in nature; hire and train interns from the Student Conservation Association • Cultural Resources Management: Conduct archaeological surveys and excavations, preserve and maintain historic structures, curate artifact collections, draft and implement historic preservation plans • National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) Program: All facility-related projects (whether construction, maintenance/repairs, or demolition) are reviewed by environmental experts for potential environmental impacts, with recommendations for mitigation of those impacts or any required permits, plans, or consultations with regulatory agencies.
Addresses the full spectrum of the compliance lifecycle, from legislative and regulatory development through implementation of regulations while ensuring the Navy can implement its mission in an uninterrupted and cost-effective manner.
• Environmental Management: Recurring activities in the management and planning of the entire environmental program including all manpower activities within the compliance, conservation and pollution prevention functions, such as all management, planning, coordination, budgeting, reporting and education and training activities.
• Waste Water/Storm Water: Includes, but not limited to, Clean Water Act related projects and activities such as permit applications/renewals, preparation/update of storm water pollution prevention and management plans, bio-solids and industrial wastewater management plans, conducting illicit discharge surveys, toxicity reduction evaluations, and water quality/sediment studies, among others.
• Air Quality: Cover costs associated with compliance of Clean Air Programs which includes preparation/update of Air Toxics Emissions Inventory Reports, Health Risk Assessments, Air Emissions Inventories, and Annual Emissions Statements, among others.
• Waste, Toxics, Ordnance: Federal and state regulated hazardous waste disposal and waste stream determination/analysis to determine if a waste is a hazardous waste.
Includes related projects and activities such as the preparation/update of Hazardous Waste Management Plans, Range Sustainability Environmental Program Assessments, Marine Resource Assessments, radon testing, and the design/upgrade/construction of hazardous, toxics, or ordinance related facilities and equipment to new environmental or DoD/Navy requirements.
‘I Love Long Island’ Campaign Tackles Harmful Lawn Fertilizers
A local environmental group is taking the fight against water pollution straight to Long Islanders’ lawns through a new “I Love Long Island” campaign meant to curb the use of potentially harmful high-nitrogen fertilizers.
The ambitious project, spearheaded by the nonprofit Grassroots Environmental Education, coincides with Earth Day, which is on April 22.
The site provides educational material about certain lawn products and encourages people to sign a pledge to refrain from using fertilizers containing 10 percent nitrogen or more on their property.
Part of the problem is people are constantly seeking “that perfect lawn…but they don’t realize there’s a payment for this,” he said, adding that stormwater runoff can lead to contaminated drinking water, algae blooms and fish kills.
Wood sees an opportunity in changing people’s habits toward how they treat their lawns.
Along with launching the new website, GEE is creating 500 “I Love Long Island” lawn signs that will be ready for distribution on Earth Day, and he commissioned a short video explaining the potential dangers associated with high-nitrogen products.
While nitrogen produced by wastewater has been blamed for threatening protective marshlands, experts also point to other pollutants and fertilizer as possible factors of environmental degradation.
Wood acknowledges that many homeowners are simply unaware about the effects of high-nitrogen products, and he’s sympathetic to landscapers who understand potential consequences but are “kind of forced by the market to use these chemicals.” He also understands that the higher price tag associated with organic fertilizers can be a deterrent.
“I’m not trying to take business away from anybody…I’d like to see everyone do well,” he said.
In the past, Wood’s organization has trained more than 1,000 landscapers in the science of lawn care, and was hired by the New York Department of Environmental Conservation to train school facility directors on the topic.