With Advocacy

Bay advocates join CBF at a rally in Annapolis. Photo by CBF Staff.
Bay advocates join CBF at a rally in Annapolis. Photo by CBF Staff

The Chesapeake Bay Foundation and its members, more than 200,000 strong, are the strongest and most effective voice that exists for protecting and restoring the Bay and its rivers and streams. We work at local, state, and federal levels for effective laws and regulations that will reduce pollution, restore vital natural systems like oyster reefs, forests, and wetlands, and encourage smart growth in our communities.

CBF acts as a watchdog to elevate good practices for healing our waterways, while being vigilant in opposing projects or proposals that would degrade water quality. Our scientists submit comments to governing bodies regarding fisheries management, wetlands mitigation, stormwater issues, construction and development projects and more. CBF is a well-respected resource on environmental issues that impact the Chesapeake Bay, its rivers, and streams.


In Virginia, CBF pushed to secure $87.6 million in state funds to pay for sewage treatment plant upgrades and runoff pollution control projects on farms. We also helped to convince lawmakers to pass legislation that reduces nitrogen pollution from lawn fertilizers and ensures water quality is protected when nutrient credit trading is used as an efficient way to pay for water-quality improvements.

CBF helped to stop a resolution that called upon the Virginia Attorney General to challenge the Chesapeake Clean Water Blueprint. And CBF teamed up with Surry County residents to help defeat (at least for now) the largest coal-fired power plant ever proposed for Virginia. Old Dominion Electric Cooperative has suspended all planning for the plant, which would have added nitrogen and mercury pollution to the Bay.


In Maryland, CBF and our partners pulled off a string of victories. We worked to convince the Maryland General Assembly to approve a doubling of the state's "flush fee" funding to pay for sewage treatment plant upgrades, as well as landmark stormwater fee legislation, and a law that discourages subdivisions with septic tanks in rural areas. We partnered with activists in Charles County to defeat a sprawl-inducing highway that would have polluted Mattawoman Creek, a fragile fish-breeding ground.

And CBF opened a new office in Easton to expand restoration efforts and our advocacy for the Clean Water Blueprint to Maryland's Eastern Shore.


In Pennsylvania, CBF was one of four environmental groups appointed to the Governor's Marcellus Shale Commission, an advisory panel that made recommendations on how to better control pollution from the Marcellus Shale drilling boom. The legislature took these recommendations and voted to pass a bill that updated the state's antiquated oil and gas laws and provided new water-quality protections.

To Hold Accountable

CBF's top priority is to defend and implement the Chesapeake Clean Water Blueprint. Much of this work is unfolding in Washington, D.C., where CBF and our allies worked hard to stop legislation that would have dramatically set back efforts to restore the Chesapeake Bay. Just as important, however, are the local communities struggling to implement their states' plans in innovative and cost-effective ways. CBF's advocacy efforts are designed to help and to hold the states and the federal government accountable for staying on the course of restoration.

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