LONG ISLAND SOUND:
OURS TO PROTECT,
RESTORE AND ENJOY
"The vision...for the Sound is of waters that are clean, clear, safe to swim in, and charged with life. It is a vision of waters nourished and protected by extensive coastal wetlands, by publicly accessible, litter-free beaches and preserves, and of undeveloped islands. It is a vision of abundant and diverse wildlife, of flourishing commercial fisheries, of harbors accessible to the boating public, and of a regional consciousness and a way of life that protects and sustains the ecosystem."
(Listen to the Sound: A Citizens' Agenda. National Audubon Society. 1990.)
Nearly twenty years ago, a plan to restore an ailing Long Island Sound took shape, spurred by a unique partnership of those who shared a love of the Sound. Over the years the Citizens Advisory Committee of the Long Island Sound Study, a diverse group of businesses, organizations and municipalities, has taken action to improve the Sound's health.
Like most residents in our region, the CAC believes the beaches, harbors, bays and shores of Long Island Sound define this place we call home.
There has been significant progress in the last two decades. We've restored and protected over one thousand acres of open space and habitat, re-opened miles and miles of rivers, substantially reduced nitrogen pollution, and engaged thousands of children and residents with education programs and volunteer opportunities. But our heritage—which is centered on appreciating beautiful views of the coast, enjoying our beaches, sailing and kayaking, clamming and fishing—remains threatened. Litter still fouls our coastline. Raw sewage continues to close beaches and shellfish beds. And great areas of open beach, marsh and forest along our coast are jeopardized by over-development.
We need to protect our landscape, not only for the birds, fish and other animals that depend on special habitats, but also to re-build the economically vibrant legacy of shoreline industries and neighborhoods for our children and their children.
Today the CAC, advised by the best Long Island Sound scientists and experts, has developed this practical and attainable Action Agenda to heal and restore the Sound. It's time to bring together all who care about the Sound to make a real difference.