Home » Our Work » Community Engagement » Casco Bay Matters

Casco Bay Matters

What is Casco Bay Matters?

We host periodic presentations and panel discussions on issues of current concern though our Casco Bay Matters series, which are open to the public.

The purpose of our Casco Bay Matters series is to provide an opportunity for concerned citizens and local decision makers to learn about and discuss issues affecting the health of our coastal waters. 

We have found that leading such community discussions can launch efforts that change pollution laws or practices. A forum we held in 2002 on Pollution Solutions to Cruise Ship Discharges led to state legislators enacting a law to prohibit the discharge of gray water (from large passenger vessels’ sinks and galleys) in Maine marine waters and to the EPA designating Casco Bay as a No Discharge Area, which prevents large ships from releasing vessel sewage within three miles of shore. Even as Portland has become one the most popular cruise ship destinations, with about 100 ship visits each year, we are the most protected harbor in the nation from cruise ship pollution. We hosted Casco Bay Is at Risk in 2014. There, a panel discussed threats to Casco Bay’s ecosystem from acidifying coastlines, invading green crabs, dwindling clam populations, and disappearing nurseries of the sea, all issues that scientists and legislators are working to address.

Celebrating Data From Our New Continuous Monitoring Stations — A Casco Bay Matters Event

April 15, 2021

We are hosting an online event to share data from all three of our Continuous Monitoring Stations and to celebrate the ways the Climate Change and Casco Bay Fund will enhance our efforts to improve and protect the health of the Bay for years to come. On Wednesday, June 16,… Read more

Cover photo: Photograph by Kevin Morris

 

More on about our work:

Looking back and looking ahead: leadership at Friends

September 21, 2021

Dear Friends, It has already been three weeks since we gathered with 200 Friends of the Bay to celebrate the career, contributions, and retirement of our longtime Executive Director, Cathy Ramdsell. Cathy’s send-off party, held outdoors at Portland Yacht Services’ boatyard, marked our first in-person event since the onset of… Read more

Oil Spill at Willard Beach

September 21, 2021

Friends of Casco Bay has been monitoring the situation at Willard Beach in South Portland, where an oil sheen was reported August 24th. Update as of September 21, 2021: After an oil spill was first reported on Willard Beach in South Portland on August 24, the beach was closed to… Read more

Leave No Trace on Casco Bay

September 9, 2021

Imagine stepping out of a boat onto a Casco Bay island. What would you hear and see? Perhaps the rhythm of crashing waves, wild roses rustling in the breeze, or a gull crying as it circles overhead. But would you ever imagine the sight of  food wrappers, derelict fishing gear,… Read more

Water Reporter Post of the Month: Linda Stimpson

September 7, 2021

Horseshoe crabs: ancient animals in Casco Bay Linda Stimpson has lived in Maine for much of her adult life, but it wasn’t until recently that she first spotted this prehistoric creature – with nine eyes and ten legs – scuttling along the shore of Casco Bay. In her Water Reporter… Read more

How does something so tiny drive change in the Bay?

September 2, 2021

What factors drive seasonal changes in the waters of Casco Bay? Staff Scientist Mike Doan addresses this question by looking at recent data from our Continuous Monitoring Stations in our latest Mike’s Field Notes video. Our Continuous Monitoring Stations collect data hourly on a variety of key water quality and… Read more

Celebrating Cathy Ramsdell

August 26, 2021

After 18 years of serving as our Executive Director at Friends of Casco Bay, Cathy Ramsdell retired on September 2, 2021. In honor of Cathy and her leadership, we hosted a celebration on August 26. Cathy arrived to the party by boat. At the event, staff and board shared reflections… Read more