National Estuary Program (NEP)

Comprehensive Conservation and Management Plan for Casco Bay

The Casco Bay Estuary Partnership (CBEP, formerly the Casco Bay Estuary Project) is a collaborative effort to preserve and protect the bay’s resources. The partners include local, state, and federal agencies and interested citizen groups. In 1990, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency designated Casco Bay as “an estuary of national significance,” leading to the formation of the CBEP. For the past 15 years, CBEP has received significant annual federal funding to develop and implement a plan for the bay’s future. Since the Casco Bay Plan was adopted in 1996, the partners have been working together to meet the five goals stated in the plan:

  • Minimize the loading of pathogens, toxics, nutrients, and sediments from stormwater and combined sewer overflows.
  • Open and protect shellfish and swimming areas impacted by water quality.
  • Minimize adverse environmental impacts to ecological communities from the use and development of land and marine resources.
  • Reduce toxic pollution.
  • Promote responsible stewardship on the part of the Casco Bay community members to protect Casco Bay and its watershed.
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