U.S. Water News Online
CENTREVILLE, Md. -- The state of Maryland will start
selling bottles of water to raise money for Chesapeake Bay
restoration, as one of two public-private agreements announced by
Gov. Robert Ehrlich to clean the bay.
Standing on the banks of the Corsica River in Queen Anne's County,
the governor held up the blue-labeled bottles for a group of
elementary school children to see. Ehrlich also used the occasion to
announce the river will get $19.4 million over the next five years
for cleanup. The money, most of it coming from federal agencies, will
fund new oysters, bay grass plantings and grants to farmers who plant
winter crops, which could reduce pollution into the tributary of the
"The achievements we make here will be taken to other waters,"
Ehrlich said. Officials said the Corsica River project, which aims to
have the river taken off a federal list of "impaired waters" because
of its pollution, is unusual because of the level of cooperation
between jurisdictions. State and local government are working with
federal environmental authorities, along with environmental watch
groups, farmers and businesses.
"This is the grand experiment, taking a challenged river and
bringing everyone together," Ehrlich said.
Dale Wright, chairman of the private non-profit Oyster Recovery
Partnership, described the Corsica Project as the first time all the
groups that work in the bay will collaborate.
"So instead of having us do the oysters, and another agency
planting bay grasses somewhere else, and land groups or farmers
working on soil and runoff, we'll all be working together," Wright
Ehrlich said 50 retailers have begun selling bottles labeled
"Maryland Natural Spring Water," with 95 percent of proceeds going to
The bottled water sales could raise $180,000 the first year, with
a goal of $400,000 a year in subsequent years for bay-wide projects,
said Charles Evans, development director for the Maryland Department
The water, sold in 20-ounce bottles and in six-packs or cases, was
bottled in Maryland by Brick House Farm Water.
Evans said it would take several years to get the Corsica River
off the Environmental Protection Agency's list, even if all goes
well. But he called the partnership exciting. "This is a first," he
EPA Administrator Stephen Johnson attended the waterside
announcements and praised the Corsica cleanup.
"It's through collaborations like this that we're going to
accelerate environmental progress," Johnson said.
Return to the
U.S. Water News' Archives page
Return to the U.S. Water
Use a comma to separate e-mail addresses:
Hi, I thought you might like to read this article.