In addition to our role as the friends of the Great Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve, the Great Bay Stewards work collaboratively with many local partners and stakeholders, including New Hampshire Fish and Game, the Great Bay-Piscataqua Waterkeeper, the University of New Hampshire, the Piscataqua Region Estuaries Partnership, and many others.

Key missions of the Great Bay Stewards include shoreline protection and long-term protection of the health of the Great Bay – and all of our partners share in this mission. Each of the local organizations complete research, field work, and education, and all these efforts are focused on the Bay’s improvement, and the improvement of access to this tremendous local Seacoast resource.

Recently PREP completed their five-year update of the State of the Estuaries report, which includes a comprehensive evaluation of the health of the Great Bay estuary. Many of our board members and staff joined Reserve staff, community members, educators, scientists, and more to attend the recent estuaries conference in Portsmouth, N.H.  We wanted to share a summary of the findings of this important study with you, our supporters and members.

Overall, PREP studies and reports on 22 key indicators, and tracks whether each indicator is improving, declining or staying stable.  While a huge amount of focus and work is going into the Bay, we still have 13 indicators that while stable, are not improving.  And we have three indicators that show negative performance trends, as shown below.

A lot of work and research is now being conducted on the Great Bay, and collectively we have made good progress and all the stakeholders remain committed to the restoration of the bay, and protection of the property adjacent to the Bay.  But, as shown by the recent PREP study, more work remains to be done.  We will all continue to work to help achieve our overriding mission of restoring the quality of the Bay for today, and tomorrow’s generations. And we hope you will all continue to support this work, as Friends of the Great Bay.  Thank you for your help.

Steve Pacquette

Vice Chair, Great Bay Stewards