Forum explores future of Long Island Sound

Anyone who uses Long Island Sound — for swimming, boating, fishing or commerce — is invited to a public forum on Wednesday, Nov. 16, at the Maritime Aquarium to discuss a plan being developed to guide the Sound’s future uses.
Shaping a ‘Sound’ Future with the Long Island Sound Blue Plan will feature details about a state-mandated effort, plus a panel discussion and Q& A with stakeholders.
The 7 p.m. program will follow a reception at 6:30. The aquarium is at 10 N. Water Street in Norwalk.
Connecticut's Coastal Management Program (CMP) protects coastal resources and guides development along the immediate coast. The Blue Plan — called for by Gov. Dannel P. Malloy and state lawmakers in 2015 — will supplement the CMP's existing authority in the deeper offshore reaches of the Sound. It is intended to prioritize the protection of existing natural resources and uses such as fishing, aquaculture and navigation from future conflicting or incompatible activities and would not create new regulatory restrictions for them.
Charged with preparing the Blue Plan by 2019, the CT Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) and its Advisory Committee are holding the Nov. 16 forum to begin the process of gaining public and stakeholder input.
Speakers and panelists will include:

  • Rob Klee, CT DEEP Commissioner; • Nathan Frohling, The Nature Conservancy in Connecticut;

  • Bill Gardella, Connecticut Marine Trades Association; • Melissa Gates, Surfrider Foundation;

  • Dick Harris, Norm Bloom and Son, LLC/Copps Island Oysters;

  • Christine Nelson, Town of Old Saybrook;

  • Mike Theiler, Jeanette T. Fisheries;

  • Brian Thompson, Connecticut DEEP.

There will also be a screening of a 28-minute documentary, Ocean Frontiers II, that documents a similar marine planning effort in Rhode Island.
The forum is free but advance registration will be greatly appreciated. Get more details and sign up here.
Click here to learn more about the Long Island Sound Blue Plan.