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For centuries before the arrival of European settlers, the Chesapeake Bay's natural bounty and pristine beauty were self-sustaining. Today, after three centuries of human use and abuse, almost everyone agrees that the Bay is fragile and its future uncertain. As scientists work to understand the environmental threats and policy makers respond with new regulations, ordinary people are increasingly doing their part to ensure a healthier future for the Chesapeake. This work gathers dozens of these stories and brings them forward as examples of how broadly the coalition to protect the Bay has grown and succeeded. Through photographs by Richard A.K. Dorbin and moving first-person accounts compiled by Ann E. Dorbin, this book celebrates a new chapter in the history of the Bay, one in which people in Maryland, Virginia, Pennsylvania, Washington D.C., Delaware and West Virginia work hand in hand to shape the future of a beloved resource. From Americorps volunteer Julie Benintendi's work with shoreline restoration to Mike Ogburn's efforts to build a non-polluting electric car, from the mountainous outer reaches of the watershed to the mouth of the Bay, the people working for the Chesapeake are as diverse and dynamic as the resource itself. Here are teachers, engineers, writers, farmers, parents and naturalists working with grit and imagination. The volume demonstrates how these unprecedented efforts throughout the Chesapeake Bay region are making a real difference toward creating a better future.
"It is a lesson in civics, science and American grit, told in moving first-person accounts gleaned from hundreds of interviews. You don't have to be an environmentalist to enjoy it, but you will learn a vast amount about our environment when you read it." -- Paula Anne Phillips, Bay Weekly