Today we attended the signing of the 2014 Chesapeake Bay Agreement at City Dock in Annapolis, MD. Signatories included Chesapeake Executive Council Chair Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley and Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Gina McCarthy, along with governors of the other Bay states (PA, NY, DE, VA, WV) and the Mayor of Washington, DC.
Gov O’Malley addresses attendees at the signing ceremony
As Governor O’Malley described it, the Bay Program is moving from having 20-year hopes to having 2-year goals, the difference being that goals have specific, measurable plans of action.
We are very excited that the new Bay Agreement includes a Bay-wide Urban Tree Canopy Outcome: Continually increase urban tree canopy capacity to provide air quality, water quality and habitat benefits throughout the watershed. Expand urban tree canopy by 2,400 acres by 2025. This goal builds on over a decade of research, policy, and practice related to urban tree canopy protection and enhancement and it’s relationship to water quality. You can view the full 2014 Chesapeake Bay agreement here.
The Chesapeake Bay program is a model watershed restoration partnership between the federal government and numerous state and local governments. A coalition on non-profits is also critical to the Program’s progress. It has recently moved from a voluntary program to a regulatory program with the issuance of a TMDL for the Bay and its tributaries. You can track progress of the Chesapeake Bay program in meeting its goals here.
We applaud the Chesapeake Bay Program for its efforts to restore the Chesapeake Bay, and to improve conditions for people + trees in cities throughout the watershed.