Friends of Casco Bay honored Oakhurst Dairy and the Bennett Family on January 27th at the organization’s Annual Meeting and Volunteer Recognition event. They received The Friend of Casco Bay Award, celebrating environmental practices that have provided significant, long-term benefits to Casco Bay. In presenting the award, Casco Baykeeper Joe Payne cited the company’s energy innovations that have conserved fuel and heating oil, contributing to cleaner air and a cleaner Casco Bay. He also noted their involvement in community tree planting and the volunteer efforts of the seven Bennett siblings.
Darren McLellan of Cape Elizabeth was also recognized for 15 years as a volunteer Water Quality Monitor for Friends of Casco Bay. Trained in EPA-certified quality control methods, Darren samples at his test site in Peabbles Cove for salinity, temperature, dissolved oxygen, water clarity, and pH. He is one of 78 citizen scientists who logged over 2,000 hours last year testing water quality on ten Saturdays between April and October.
More than 650 volunteers have been trained over the past 19 years to help Friends of Casco Bay collect scientific data on marine water quality. The efforts of the organization’s volunteers are invaluable to Friends of Casco Bay’s work to improve and protect the environmental health of Casco Bay through advocacy, research, education, and collaborative partnerships.