Protecting wetlands and their creatures
by building relationships
By Lori Valigra
Don Bade's easy smile and relaxed manner appear to belie his passion
for the watersheds surrounding the Parker River and Plum Island
Sound. As a founder of the Parker River Clean Water Association,
he has strengthened all aspects of the organization through his
inspiration and leadership, work with local officials, community
outreach and local school projects. He partners with organizations
that have broader environmental goals that benefit the whole region.
“I like building relationships with people,” he says.
For his many accomplishments in this role, he recently received
the Gulf of Maine Council's Art Longard Award. Named for the late
Nova Scotia conservationist and founding member of the council,
the award recognizes a strong commitment to volunteer activities
dedicated to environmental protection and sustainability of the
Gulf of Maine.
By Steve Cartwright
If the health of the sea seems remote to your well-being, consider this: phytoplankton, the single-celled algae that are the most abundant photosynthetic organisms in the ocean, produce half the oxygen in the atmosphere via photosynthesis. Trees, shrubs, grasses and other plants produce the other half via photosynthesis. Therefore, says Dr. Barney Balch, senior research scientist at the Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences in Boothbay Harbor, Maine, Every other breath you take is thanks to phytoplankton.
Just back from one of his numerous oceanic study cruises, Balch says that in the big picture, we ignore the marine environment at our peril. He is fond of a Garry Trudeau cartoon that cites the save the whales battle cry, but wonders where the save the phytoplankton troops are.