Long Island Sound Coastal Watershed Network

Welcome to the Long Island Sound Coastal Watershed Network’s April newsletter! 

Spring has sprung, birds are singing, flowers are blooming, and warmer weather is on its way! Excitement is in the air, and following suit, we are excited to share opportunities for new Long Island Sound clean water projects.

This month we’re highlighting our first network webinar! The webinar happening this month is on Marine Debris - be sure to check out the details below. Plus get to know Clean Up Sound and Harbors featured in this month’s network member spotlight!

The Long Island Sound Coastal Watershed Network (the Network) is focused on bringing together communities, groups, and individuals working to reduce pollution loads entering Long Island Sound and its rivers, harbors, and bays. 

Our goal is to increase the pace and number of clean water projects by sharing the latest science, technology, policies, and practices, spotlighting lessons learned, and building new opportunities for collaboration and partnerships across Long Island Sound geographies.  

Read below to see
💧 News & Announcements
💧 Upcoming Funding Opportunities
💧 Network Events Calendar
💧 This Month’s Network Member Spotlight!

Important Announcements

Webinar: Tackling Marine Debris Pollution in Long Island Sound

April 14th, 2022 | 12:00 - 1:30 PM
ONLINE over Zoom

(Register here)
Join the Network in our 2022 webinar series designed to showcase and advance local actions that target pollution from activities on land including nitrogen pollution, fecal bacteria, and consumer plastics and debris –that enter the Sound’s water through sewage, stormwater, and groundwater.
Hear from scientists and practitioners about approaches to combat pollution and clean up coastal waters in communities around Long Island Sound. The April webinar will include presentations and a panel on marine debris pollution and policies in LIS, including:
  • An overview of the LIS Marine Debris Action Plan
  • Removing derelict lobster traps from LIS
  • Implementing proposed state policies to reduce packaging and plastic waste
  • Successful policies and campaigns to reduce plastic pollution.
Save the date and register now!
Invite your friends, colleagues, and network to join the webinar! Want to share this opportunity? Use our Outreach Toolkit for email templates and social media graphics to help spread the word. 

In the News

Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone said Wednesday the
Suffolk announces $1 million for coastal resiliency projects 

Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone said Wednesday, March 2nd, the county will give $1 million in funding to support the planning and implementation of the county's coastal resiliency efforts to counter the impact of increasing storms and flooding resulting from climate change. 

Bellone noted the funding — from a new wastewater infrastructure fund created using $125 million from the 2021 American Rescue Plan — comes as Suffolk nears the 10th anniversary of Superstorm Sandy. 

"We are the most vulnerable. We're on the frontlines," Adrienne Esposito, executive director of Citizens Campaign for the Environment, said at the news conference. Read more about the $1 million for coastal resiliency projects in this Newsday article.

In the News

$2 million for SEPTIC program in Nassau County

The Nassau County Legislature passed a supplemental appropriation of a $2 million grant from the New York State Environmental Facilities Corporation and the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation. This grant funds the septic system replacement grant program for residents and small businesses allowing them to replace their conventional or failing cesspools/septic systems with environmentally friendly, state-of-the-art technology that reduces nitrogen. 

For more information, please visit the Nassau County SEPTIC website. You can contact  Nassau County via email at or via phone at (516) 364-5861.

Grant and Funding Opportunities

Given increases to the Long Island Sound Study annual budget and passage of the historic bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) in late 2021, opportunities to fund clean water implementation projects are increasing and information is changing rapidly.   

Which is why we’re creating and curating a list of grant and funding opportunities that best support your clean water projects and ideas! Our list will serve as an open announcement board with funding opportunity names, links, and descriptions. For a rolling list of grant and funding opportunities, click the button below. 

View Funding Opportunities List 

Funding Opportunity:
Long Island Sound Future Fund 

Full Proposal Due: 
May 19th, 2022

*Date change: The March Network newsletter shared an RFP deadline of April 22. However, the current and correct deadline is May 19. 

The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation's Long Island Sound Futures Fund supports projects to fully restore the health and living resources of Long Island Sound. With lower match requirements and potential funding of $10 million or more for grants in 2022, the Fund is looking for the following project types in corresponding geographies: 

  • Habitat restoration planning or implementation grants for projects in the Long Island Sound Study coastal zone of CT & NY
  • Resilience, education, water quality and fish passage grants for projects in the Long Island Sound Study boundary in CT and NY 
  • Nitrogen prevention or reduction planning or implementation grants for projects in the Long Island Sound boundary in CT, MA, NH, VT 
Available Funding: $10 million
Award Range: $50k -$1.5 million 
Click here for more information on the LIS Future Fund

Water Quality Monitoring Loan Program

Application Deadline: 
April 10, 2022 

The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA Region 2) is inviting applications for use of field and laboratory equipment for water monitoring work in New York and New Jersey. Equipment available for the 2022 loaning period are: 

  • Water Quality Sets: include Garmin GPS units, turbidity tubes and YSI Multi-Parameter Sondes for measuring general water quality parameters such as dissolved oxygen, pH, temperature, conductivity and salinity  

  • IDEXX Sets for Pathogen Monitoring: allow the user to perform laboratory tests for Enterococci and Total Coliforms/E. coli 

  • Manta Trawl for Microplastics: only 1 available; requires use of a boat (minimum 18 footer) 

This loan program is restricted to equipment only, and does not include expendable sampling or analysis supplies - see the RFA, which includes an estimate of consumable costs. 

Applications will be accepted through April 10th, 2022

Online applications are preferred.  The application is also available as Word doc or fillable PDF upon request.  

Any relevant documents, including but not limited to a copy of the site map, QAPP, etc. should be emailed directly to me at

Click here for more information on the Water Quality Monitoring Loan Program
We’d like to help amplify the many activities and events our Network members host, by sharing information about your great opportunities for education, stewardship, monitoring, and more. Think of this as a virtual bulletin board to foster Sound-wide learning and collaboration.

If you have any upcoming events or activities you’d like to be featured in future Network newsletters, please fill out the Network Events Calendar Request Form. 
Click here to have your event featured in upcoming newsletters!

“Clean Water Act: Past and Future”
NEIWPCC Annual Nonpoint Source Conference 

April 27-28, 2022 
Woodstock Inn & Resort 
Woodstock, VT 

The 32nd Annual Nonpoint Source (NPS) Conference is a premier forum in the Northeast for sharing information and improving communication on NPS issues and projects. With the theme “Clean Water Act: Past and Future”, the conference will celebrate the 50th anniversary of the CWA and feature sessions such as financing NPS projects, partnership building and community engagement. 

Join the conference as an exhibitor, sponsor, or attendee!  For further information on conference agenda and registration, visit the NPS Conference website or contact Lynn Porta at

Learn more and register for NPS Conference

April is a busy month for environmental and conservation organizations. This year, we celebrate the 51st anniversary of Earth Day and we know there will be tons of opportunities across the Sound for folks to celebrate, engage, and take action with one another. 

From beach cleanups to learning opportunities, it can be hard to keep track of everything out on the Sound. To help, we’re putting together an online Earth Month Bulletin Board for some Earth Month events you can share with your volunteers, members, and colleagues! Some events include: 

  • Beach walks and cleanups by the Atlantic Marine Conservation Society 

  • Beach cleanups at Smith Point with Coastal Steward LIS 

Have an event or activity in April you want to share? Please share any Earth Month or Earth Day events you have by clicking on the button below!

View and add your events to the Earth Month Calendar sheet!

Clean Up Sound and Harbors (CUSH)

The mission of CUSH, Inc. is to clean up and protect Fishers Island Sound and its coves, inlets, bays, rivers, and harbors. Their mission is pursued through sustained water quality monitoring and by promoting environmental stewardship through public education. They offer volunteer opportunities to join their efforts in coastal cleanups, water quality testing, organic turf management, sound-friendly boating, fundraising, and publicity.  

CUSH volunteers have collected water quality data with guidance from the University of Rhode Island Watershed Watch for fifteen years.

They joined the Long Island Sound Unified Water Study in 2017, and provide monitoring data for the LIS Report Card from three waterways, Mystic Harbor, Mystic River, and Wequetequock Cove. CUSH is a trusted local source of water quality information and they share tips with residents and visitors about healthy lawn and garden management, safe boat pump-outs, and clean marina practices. Since 2012, CUSH has collaborated with organizations in the region, including Mystic Aquarium and Save the Bay in Rhode Island to host coastal cleanups and remove shoreline debris. Recently, CUSH Collaborated with other groups to develop a community-based action plan with recommendations for reducing sources of nitrogen pollution entering coastal waters

"We applaud CUSH's dedication to protecting clear water, clean beaches and healthy seagrass. Their work helps support swimming, fishing, boating, and safe seafood that people around the Sound enjoy." – Holly Drinkuth, Co-Chair of the Long Island Sound Study Citizen's Advisory Committee and Director of Outreach and Watershed Projects at The Nature Conservancy

Thank you CUSH,
for all your hard work!

To nominate a person, group, or organization to be recognized in upcoming newsletters' member spotlight, please fill out the Network Member Spotlight Nomination Form. 

Click here for the Network Member Spotlight Nomination Form
Thank you for being a part of the Network! Do you know someone you think should be a part of the Network? Share the newsletter sign-up form below so they can receive Network news and announcements!
Network Newsletter Sign-Up Form
The Long Island Sound Coastal Watershed Network (the Network) is hosted by Citizens Campaign for the Environment, Save the Sound, and The Nature Conservancy with generous support from the LIS Funders Collaborative and LIS Study funding.

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