FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
July 21, 2022
Friends of Casco Bay announced the recipients of the 2022 Casco Bay Awards at their 50th anniversary of the Clean Water Act celebration
New Gloucester, ME: Casco Baykeeper Ivy Frignoca announced the three recipients of the 2022 Casco Bay Awards at Friends of Casco Bay’s celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Clean Water Act and Members Annual Meeting on Wednesday evening. Award recipients were recognized for their exceptional efforts to address pollution and climate change in Casco Bay.
“On the 50th anniversary of the Clean Water Act, we want to recognize the outstanding contributions of tonight’s Casco Bay Awardees,” said Ivy. “All three have helped to address some of the greatest threats to the health of the Bay without seeking praise or limelight, driven by a passion for clean water. To all three, I owe a personal debt of gratitude; they each taught and continue to teach me so much about protecting Casco Bay.”
Scott Firmin, Portland Water District Director of Wastewater Services, received a Casco Bay Award for reducing nitrogen levels in Greater Portland’s wastewater discharges. Wastewater is a major source of nitrogen pollution into Casco Bay. At the East End Wastewater Treatment Facility alone, Scott has overseen changes in operations in the past four years that have kept over 1.5 million pounds of nitrogen out of Casco Bay. Nitrogen pollution can cause excessive algal growth that has myriad negative impacts on the marine environment, including shutting down shellfisheries, degrading eelgrass beds which are critical fish nursery habitat, and exacerbating coastal acidification.
Fred Dillon, South Portland Stormwater Coordinator, received a Casco Bay Award for his efforts to reduce stormwater pollution into Casco Bay. Stormwater is a major source of pollution into Casco Bay, and is notoriously difficult to address. In addition to his regular responsibilities as Stormwater Coordinator, Fred has worked tirelessly to monitor water quality in polluted urban streams that empty into Casco Bay. Fred also helped develop South Portland’s fertilizer and pesticide ordinances, led volunteer water quality monitoring in the Presumpscot River, advanced innovative restoration projects at Long Creek, and co-founded Maine Water Environment Association’s stormwater section.
Dan Devereaux, Brunswick Coastal Resources Manager, received a Casco Bay Award for his efforts to sustainably manage marine resources in Eastern Casco Bay and increase the region’s climate resilience. Dan has been integral to creating a network of harbormasters and marine resource officers that collaboratively manage shellfisheries and respond to the impacts of climate change, like coastal acidification. He additionally has helped expand the use of water quality monitoring to inform resource management decisions. Dan is a founding member of the state shellfish advisory council, and serves on countless shellfish and coastal resource management committees. He also helped to create a student shellfish license program at the Brunswick school department, which enables students to earn money while learning about and supporting the shellfish industry.
Ivy summarized the broader context in which the award recipients have carried out their work in her remarks. “We, humans, are the number one threat to the health of Casco Bay,” said Ivy. “From carbon emissions and urban sprawl, to toxic and plastic pollution, and much more. Yet we also are the ones empowered to nurture and live in harmony with the Bay. Tonight’s awardees exemplify this ethic, and should inspire all of us to follow in their footsteps and take on the work ahead of us.”
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