Investing in Nature to Promote Cleaner Water and Healthier Communities
Dr. Danielle Kreeger, Director
Partnership for the Delaware Estuary
Associate Research Professor,
The Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University
Most people understand the importance of forests and wetlands for sustaining clean air and water. Less visible are the ecological and human health benefits of coastal habitats such as tidal marshes, oyster reefs and hidden underwater gardens of submerged aquatic plants and mussels. These habitats function like kidneys that filter and transform many types of pollutants. They help to stabilize erosion, buffer flooding, capture carbon, and serve as fish factories. Natural habitats provide the most benefits (ecosystem services) when they are abundant and healthy. Unfortunately, these habitats are not as expansive in the Delaware Estuary watershed as they once were. Since human population and development will continue to expand, how and where will these critical services be provided, and will we need to spend much more resources to clean our water mechanically simply because nature’s intrinsic self-healing ability is diminished. We will also need to spend more to armor our coasts, and we suffer economic impacts from degraded fisheries, ecotourism, etc. The good news is that the technology now exists to enhance the full mosaic of coastal habitats so that they deliver the greatest ecological and human benefits. Examples include the trending “Living Shoreline” and “Mussels for Clean Water” initiatives here in the Delaware Estuary. Our future sustainability hinges on bold and creative investments in natural infrastructure, wherever and however possible, both above and below the water.
Dr. Danielle Kreeger is an ecologist with more than 35 years of experience working as a research scientist and educator. She is the science director for the Partnership for the Delaware Estuary, a National Estuary Program responsible for protecting and restoring natural resources. She also serves as associate research professor at The Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University. Danielle’s research interests include climate adaptation, bivalve shellfish, wetlands, and restoration for ecosystem services.
This seminar does qualify for 1.0 Professional Development Hour (PDH). A Certificate of Attendance will be available on site for AWRA-PMAS members only. The meeting price for non-members who wish to receive a Certificate of Attendance for the PDH is $10.00 ($3.00 for meeting + $7.00 for certificate).
Please note: all lunch orders will close by noon on the day before the presentation. In addition, all lunch orders will need to be paid for online by this time. We are unable to refund the cost of lunch or meeting fees because they are paid ahead of time based on number of registrations. Registration begins at 11:30am with the presentation starting promptly at 12:00pm.