December 2015
"If a man fails to honor the rivers, he shall not gain the life from them."

-- Anonymous 
I'm Dreaming of a Green Christmas ...
Credit: Stephane Mignon
Each year, Americans' trash production increases by 25% between Thanksgiving and New Year's, accounting for an extra 
six million tons of trash during the holiday season (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency). And while it's likely that the readers of this publication are ahead of the curve in greening their holidays by carpooling, avoiding paper goods, and maybe even making some Pinterest-inspired homemade gifts and wrapping paper (go you!), we thought we would share with you some of the more original ideas we've heard recently about how to make your holidays more eco-friendly:
  • Sure, waste-free e-cards are a great alternative to paper holiday cards, but in this world of ever increasing digital interactions, there are some things that just can't be adequately replaced. If you're still tied to the nostalgia of the printed word, consider purchasing your cards from The Arbor Day Foundation. Not only will these cards be printed on recycled paper, but each card you purchase will plant a tree. (Pro-tip: cut up old greeting cards and re-use them as gift tags).
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Inching Closer to Improving Loantaka Brook
Director of Water Quality, Laura Kelm, samples a pipe that flows into Loantaka Brook. Credit: K. Martin
Since my  last blog post about our investigations into high bacteria in Loantaka Brook, we have made some progress in finding the source.

Remember that 4' diameter pipe that I had mentioned? Well, since it had a flow during a dry weather period in August, I needed to wait for more dry weather for follow-up sampling (no stormwater pipe should have a flow during dry weather). Schedules and the weather finally aligned in early November, and I headed upstream with my colleague  Kelly Martin to collect water samples from the large pipe and nearby locations.
When collecting the sample from the 4' pipe, there was a distinct odor of sewage. The results confirmed it - 
E. coli was 25 times higher than the state standard, and 21 times higher than Loantaka Brook only 40' upstream. So now we have our source of  E. coli !
Watershed Moments
Second Grade Sundance Student describes "How to Protect Your Watershed."
Making an Impact

What does a group of second graders know about water quality? As it turns out, a lot! Every year, GSWA's director of education and outreach, Hazel England, visits Sundance School to engage students with lessons about the water cycle, water quality, and pollution.

The students cling to her every word, and it shows! As Hazel puts it, "I am always amazed at the depth of these second graders knowledge. They ask insightful questions, have a true understanding of the water cycle, and prove it to me by the writings they produce once I leave the classroom".

Check out one of the student's drawings and descriptions of different pollution types pictured above.
Around the Watershed
Ed and Markie Babbott will be signing copies of their book "Into The Great Swamp" at The Bookworm Saturday, Dec. 5th from 1-3 PM. Edward Babbott's deep love and concern for the environment led him to join the board of New Jersey Conservation Foundation on which he served in multiple capacities for over four decades. He and his wife are lifetime residents of the area.  Markie Babbott's poems have been published widely in journals and anthologies. 
Start Using Amazon Smile!

With all of that holiday shopping around the corner, now is the perfect time to start using Amazon Smile! When you link your already existing Amazon account to Great Swamp Watershed Association, Amazon starts donating .5% of your purchases to us. Although that may not sound like much, if all of our Amazon using members switched over to Smile, it would really add up!

Here's how you do it:

1. Visit
2. Sign in to your already existing amazon account (or create a new one)
3. In the "Pick Your Own Charitable Organization" section, type Great Swamp Watershed Association and click the search button. Then click the select button next to our name.
4. You're all done! Now shop away :)

A helpful tip - Amazon only donates when you shop through the smile website. Change your regular amazon bookmark to (your shopping experience will be the same). That way, you'll always be donating while you shop!

GSWA & the Care2Share Program
Care2Share Ad Graphic

Do you already bank with investors? Sign up for their Care2Share program!

Investors Bank supports GSWA by providing regular donations through its Care2Share program. It's totally free, and with a little help from you and your family, friends, and neighbors, we can grow those donations into something special: special in a way that helps all of our environmental stewardship, education, and advocacy programs!
How does it work?
The Care2Share program allows you to link your personal deposit account at Investors to GSWA. On a regular basis, Investors looks at the number of accounts linked to us, calculates the average balance in those accounts, and makes a donation to us equal to a percentage of that average balance. It doesn't cost you a cent, and your favorite charity get an important financial boost!

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In This Issue
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Do you think we're doing a good job of protecting the waters and the land of the Great Swamp Watershed? If so, then please help us continue our work by sending in your gift o f support right now!
Upcoming Events
Breakfast Briefing: Climate Change and NJ's Coast, 12/8

8AM-9:30AM. Join GSWA and Rutger's Professor of Environmental Monitoring, Rick Lathrop as he discusses the implications of climate change and sea level rise on New Jersey's coasts.

He will present a number of web-based tools that Rutgers is developing to aid residents and coastal decision-makers in planning for sea level rise and to promote enhanced coastal resiliency.

Please click the Register Now! button for location information.
Issues to Watch

Pilgrim Pipeline has moved forward with their application in New York State. Read more.


New Jersey Conservation Foundation and the Goodman Group, Ltd have joined together to publish a report on the economic impact of the PennEast Pipeline in New Jersey and Pennsylvania. Read more.

The Breakthrough Energy Coalition, backed by some of the worlds wealthiest tech giants, announces its goal to promote innovative and clean energy.

Climate talks are underway in Paris. Read more.
GSWA Goes Social!
Follow GSWA on these social media sites for breaking news and special posts...

Great Swamp Watershed Association
Protecting our waters and our land for more than 30 years
Street Address: 568 Tempe Wick Road, Morristown, NJ  07960 - Map It!
Mailing Address: P.O. Box 300, New Vernon, NJ  07976

GSWA Thanks our Generous 2015 Gala Sponsors