Our Strategic Plan

Copyright Krista Schlyer/iLCP© Krista Schlyer/iLCP

2020 Goal:

Cover: CBF's Strategic PlanClick to download CBF's 2016–2020 Strategic Plan

By 2020, federal, state, and local governments will fully enforce the Clean Water Act and all other clean water laws and regulations. The Chesapeake Clean Water Blueprint, the precedent-setting program for pollution reduction, will be defended from powerful opposition forces trying to derail it and will be on track to meet its 2025 deadline. When fully implemented, the Blueprint will result in the “delisting” of the Bay. This will achieve the equivalent of a 40 on CBF’s Health Index, due to the
resulting reduction of nitrogen loads to 186 million pounds per year and phosphorus loads to 12.5 million pounds per year.


  1. There is broad recognition among the public, media, elected and appointed officials and others that the Bay is a national treasure and that saving the Bay is a national priority;
  2. All states and the District of Columbia are on track to meet 2025 Blueprint goals;
  3. Virginia and Maryland are halfway to achieving and maintaining their goal of 10 billion additional adult oysters by 2025;
  4. There is broad recognition that Blueprint pollution limits are a cap and that new loads must be offset; and
  5. CBF’s board, staff, and supporting constituency are diverse, reflecting the demographic profile of the region, and our programs reflect the interests of a diverse constituency.


While CBF will continue to defend and implement the Blueprint across the watershed, a special emphasis will be focused on Pennsylvania. Pollution flowing down the Susquehanna is overwhelming progress made thus far by Maryland, Virginia, and the District of Columbia. Unless Pennsylvania dramatically increases its pollution reduction efforts, the Bay will continue to be polluted. CBF will rebrand its operations to reflect the benefit of clean water in Pennsylvania, accelerate all of its operations in the state, and seek broad partnerships with sporting interests focused on fresh water fisheries.

Throughout the entire watershed, CBF will:

  1. Educate—CBF will educate strategic and diverse stakeholders, opinion leaders, elected and appointed officials, school administrators, teachers, and students about the imperative of clean water.
    Education will serve as a means to student and citizen engagement and behavior change.
  2. Advocate—CBF will advocate for the defense and implementation of the Blueprint. Drawing on the beneficial results of CBF educational efforts, we will engage adults and young people in efforts to ensure that good laws and regulations are developed, introduced, passed, retained, and enforced.
  3. Litigate—CBF will use litigation to ensure Blueprint implementation, and to expose and rectify the most egregious cases of non-compliance with environmental laws and regulations. CBF will intervene in litigation brought by Blueprint opponents to derail it.
  4. Restore—CBF will natural filters in order to demonstrate the feasibility of Blueprint implementation to achieve demonstrable, specific, on-the-ground water-quality improvements. Restoration
    work on private land will strive to have every landowner actively advocate for Blueprint implementation.
  5. Diversify—CBF will diversify our staff, and board, as a means to connect with and engage the diverse coalition of stakeholders necessary to save the Bay. Consistent with our mission, CBF will seek to work on issues which reflect the interests of diverse constituencies.

Download the complete Chesapeake Bay Foundation 2016-2020 Strategic Plan (PDF)

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