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Watershed Council Names Good Citizens of the Year

Three local organizations are recognized by the Aquidneck Island Watershed Council for efforts on behalf of protecting the watershed.

The East Bay Met School, Aquidneck Land Trust, and Clean Ocean Access were each recognized recently with a “Good Citizenship Award for 2011” by the Aquidneck Island Watershed Council. James Marshall, president of the grass roots Watershed Council, made the award presentations during the third annual conference on water quality, sponsored by the Watershed Council.

The East Bay Met School was recognized for its “enthusiastic support and participation in the Aquidneck Island Watershed Council’s Citizen Scientist water testing effort for the past three years,” and for the school’s Green Team, which “enlarged its study of the Bailey Brook Watershed from a single test site at the Aquidneck Shopping Center to now include several key locations on the Island.” Marshall presented the “Good Citizenship” award to Zach Chester, 16, a sophomore at the school and an active member of the Green Team; several other Green Team members presented water quality information during the conference. The East Bay Met School is a small public high school, located in Newport, which emphasizes an individualized learning approach.

As Marshall handed a “Good Citizenship” award to the Aquidneck Land Trust’s executive director, Ted Clement, Marshall cited the Trust’s efforts “to preserve open space, farmland and wooded acreage” and to preserve “from development critical lands in the watershed that provides our drinking water supply.” The Aquidneck Land Trust is a land conservation nonprofit based in Middletown.

Dave McLaughlin, founder of Clean Ocean Access, accepted a “Good Citizenship” award on behalf of his organization, which Marshall recognized for “its successful water testing at critical locations around Newport that accurately measured the health of the ocean and Narragansett Bay, setting the standards of scientific study and data collection,” and for establishing the “Citizen Scientist water testing program, involving public and private schools and area residents as testers.” Clean Ocean Access, a nonprofit whose membership includes many local surfers interested in keeping the water clean, is based in Newport.

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