CREDIT: Ari Kaufman
Apr 22

Happy Earth Day from the Great Swamp Watershed Association!

Earth Day 2013 is here! According to the Earth Day Network, more than a billion people in 192 countries are participating in related events around the globe.

Since this year’s official observance falls on a Monday, most folks are probably spending the day at work. But, remember that April is often called “Earth Month” and this week is often called “Earth Week.” Perhaps you marked Earth Day early at an event this past weekend or earlier in April. Perhaps you’re observing it in the days to come. When you get right down to it, any day is a good day for an Earth Day celebration!

Help GSWA keep this year’s Earth Day spirit alive and kicking throughout May too! There are few ways you can help.


Why not become a GSWA volunteer?

There are two important volunteer opportunities coming up soon. On Sunday, May 5, Laura Kelm, our director of water quality programs, is looking for volunteers to help with our annual stream restoration project. This event, which is our version of a traditional Earth Day cleanup, will take place at Kitchell Pond in the heart of Morris County’s Loantaka Brook Reservation. We will be building a new vegetated buffer around the pond that will work to curb the negative effects of stormwater runnoff and erosion. Much of the work will center around planting native shrubs and plants that slow down stormwater flow and help absorb water into the ground. For more information about this event, visit

Sunday, May 19 is your opportunity to become a member of GSWA’s Stream Team at our biannual stream assessment training for volunteers. Held twice a year (once in the fall and once in the spring), GSWA’s visual assessment training teaches volunteers how to observe and record important scientific data about our local stream reaches, including information like stream depth, stream width, and the presence or absence of streambank erosion. Trained Stream Team members are in short supply, so please help us out by coming to this event. For more information about this hands-on, indoor-outdoor workshop, visit


Take some time to educate yourself on an important environmental topic: climate change.

The Face of Climate Change is the theme that Earth Day Network — an international nonprofit that has been working to mobilize and diversify the environmental movement for many years — has given to Earth Day 2013. In celebration of that theme, GSWA has created a special event that will focus on climate change issues and how they will specifically affects those of us living here in northern New Jersey.

On Monday, May 13, GSWA, the Somerset County Park Commission, and the Passaic River Institute will convene a special panel discussion called “The Challenges of Climate Change and Building Resilient Communities.” This event, which takes place at 7PM at the Somerset County Environmental Education Center in Basking Ridge, will feature a panel of climate change experts from Montclair State University. Topics for discussion will include everything from the documented rise in average temperatures in New Jersey, to the important, but often overlooked, role of human relationships in preparing for and recovering from severe climatic events. For more information about this public panel discussion, visit


Become a GSWA member right now!

Make Earth Day your everyday by making a financial commitment to the only group solely dedicated to protecting the waters and land of the Great Swamp Watershed.

There are plenty of benefits for members: a biannual print newsletter that keeps you up-to-date on watershed happenings, a monthly eNewsletter that notifies you of important breaking environmental news, free participation in GSWA events and invitations to special get-togethers, and much more.

We need your help all year long! Click here to become a member right now.