Going Green!

Coastal Cleanup’s 1,800 volunteers collect 3 tons of trash

This year’s DNREC-sponsored 28th annual Delaware Coastal Cleanup, held on Sept. 20, drew 1,805 volunteers, who collected 3.2 tons of trash from 46 sites along more than 80 miles of Delaware’s waterways and coastline stretching from Wilmington to Fenwick Island. About one-third of that trash — aluminum cans and glass and plastic bottles — was recycled this year.

Protecting Our Indian River group appeals to Superior Court

A courtroom in the Sussex County Superior Court in Georgetown was packed Monday morning, as Superior Court Judge Richard Stokes heard oral arguments for an appeal to overturn a decision by the Sussex County Board of Adjustment that allows the Allen Harim chicken processing plant to move forward in Millsboro.

Residents voice feelings on aquaculture

After a recent uproar about the potential impacts of shellfish aquaculture in the Inland Bays, local residents gathered at a massive meeting hosted by state Sen. Gerald Hocker Sr. and state Rep. Ron Gray this week to express their concerns.

Federal funding granted to support Delaware aquaculture

Last week, U.S. Sen. Tom Carper (D-Del.) joined local and state officials, and representatives from the University of Delaware and the Center for the Inland Bays to announce two federal grants to support the development of oyster farming in Delaware’s Inland Bays.

Oyster aquaculture isn’t all it’s cracked up to be, residents argue

After months of new oyster aquaculture regulations being hammered into shape, a group of concerned citizens are hoping to straighten that picture.

Learn about native edible plants at Delaware Seashore State Park

Native plants are abundant along Delaware’s beaches and have adapted specifically to survive the harsh conditions of a coastal habitat. But that is not all that makes the plants unique. In fact, according to state park officials, many of them are delicious and completely safe for human consumption.

Volunteers sought to help clean up the coast

A hockey puck, toothbrush, headphones, door, box springs, showerhead and barstool. What do these things have in common? All were collected during last year’s Coastal Cleanup, spanning the State’s 97-mile eastern coastline.

Energy-saving initiatives launched in state municipalities

U.S. Sens. Tom Carper and Chris Coons and U.S. Rep. John Carney (all D-Del.) recently joined USDA Rural Development State Director Bill McGowan to announce energy-saving initiatives in New Castle, Kent and Sussex counties through the Rural Economic Development Loan & Grant Program.

Eagle Scout revitalizes outdoor classroom at Showell

Kids at Phillip C. Showell Elementary School can now go outside the classroom to learn, thanks to the help of Eagle Scout Michael Thompson.

Delaware ranked seventh in nation for solar energy

Delaware is again among the states leading the nation in solar energy — ranked seventh per capita for cumulative solar installations, according to a report released this week by Environment America Research & Policy Center, “Lighting the Way: The Top Ten States that Helped Drive America’s Solar Energy Boom in 2013.”

DNREC announces changes to Delaware’s Green Energy Fund

DNREC’s Division of Energy and Climate and the state’s Sustainable Energy Utility (SEU) recently announced the Aug. 4 launch of the Joint Green Energy Program, with the intention of increasing small-scale photovoltaic installations in Delaware through the state’s Green Energy Fund.

Online registration open now for Coastal Cleanup vols

Online volunteer registration is now open for the 28th annual Delaware Coastal Cleanup, to be held from 9 a.m. to noon on Saturday, Sept. 20. Sponsored by the Delaware Department of Natural Resources & Environmental Control, the cleanup spans the First State’s 97-mile eastern coastline and includes river and ocean shorelines, as well as wetland and watershed areas.

Odd algae bloom in Salt Pond gets attention from State

Special to the Coastal Point • Monica Scott: This algae bloom in Salt Pond created quite a stir recently.Special to the Coastal Point • Monica Scott: This algae bloom in Salt Pond created quite a stir recently.To Pat Sned, whose home backs up to the Salt Pond, a large apparent algae bloom that caught her eye about a month ago seemed a little out of place. She said that, in her 15 years of owning her home, she had never noticed anything like it.

“It’s quite extensive” she said, of the yellowish muck that sits on the edges of the southeast corner of the Salt Pond. What Sned can see out her back door in the Villas of Bethany West is the area where the Bethany Loop Canal meets the Salt Pond, coming from the Bethany Beach side (behind the Army National Guard building on Route 1).

“The people from DNREC came, and they said it isn’t so unusual that it’s growing here, but none of us had ever seen a growth like that. I have not seen any growth, and never algae. My concern was “what has changed?”

She said Bethany Beach town officials and DNREC came out, but she was told the water was too shallow for them to use their machines to cut the algae.

Playing in the dirt

Coastal Point • Laura Walter: Children have planted this garden in May, in partnership with the Selbyville Public Library, and continue to maintain it.Coastal Point • Laura Walter: Children have planted this garden in May, in partnership with the Selbyville Public Library, and continue to maintain it.For once, kids are being encouraged to get dirty, and the Selbyville Public Library is leading the way.

The Selbyville Children’s Garden was planted in May by about 12 children in the library’s summer reading program. Now, every Tuesday at 4 p.m., children can attend the reading program — but they can help take care of their garden all week long. That means pulling weeds and watering the many plants.

“They love it,” said children’s librarian Ronshell “Shelly” Purnell.

They’re growing tomatoes, peppers, radish, cucumbers, squash, basil, parsley, cantaloupes and more. A line of sunflowers along the side of the library building is expected to reach 7 feet tall.

The veggies will be used in the teens’ Chop Challenge cooking program. They’ve even made a few dollars selling vegetables in the library.

“The parents say, ‘How do you get kids to come out and play in dirt and we can’t get ’em to clean their rooms?’” Purnell laughed. “It’s all about putting fun in little stuff like this.”

Volunteers needed for Inland Bays Cleanup

The Delaware Center for the Inland Bays, the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control’s Division of Fish & Wildlife Enforcement Section and the Division of Parks & Recreation are seeking volunteers and boats for the 10th annual Inland Bays Cleanup. The Cleanup will start at 9 a.m. on Saturday, July 12, and end about 1 p.m.

Delaware beaches again top in nation for water quality

Putting it in World Series terms, Delaware has just made a “cleanest sweep,” for the fourth straight year, capturing the crown for the country’s cleanest beach water quality. The acclaim came from the National Resources Defense Council, the non-partisan international environmental advocacy group that annually assesses all beaches in the 30 coastal states.

Oysters and islands focus of effort to clean up South Bethany canals

The Centre for the Inland Bays wants to improve the water quality in South Bethany’s canals, and they’re floating a couple new tools for their environmental toolbox there: islands and oysters.