Last week, the local environmental preservation advocates Concerned Citizens of Montauk, or CCOM, hosted a public launch for their new Save the Lake-Save the Pond initiative.
The program targets both Lake Montauk and Fort Pond, two bodies of water in Montauk that have been deemed by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation as impaired due to harmful algal blooms and contaminated waters from pathogens, resulting in portions of their waters being cordoned off from public swimming, shell fishing and other aquatic activities Montauk residents often do to fill their summer days.
The Save the Lake- Save the Pond initiative has been a long time coming—for three years now, CCOM’s trained volunteers have been collecting and analyzing water samples that have verified the high levels of pollution in Lake Montauk and Fort Pond. With the STL/STP movement, the organization’s volunteers will train ambassadors to work with local investors, or stewards, who are committed to reducing the human pollution in local waters through various actions, including inspecting and upgrading septic systems, halting the use of fertilizers and pesticides, and planting vegetative buffers, among other measures, to contain storm water.
CCOM has been fighting for the preservation of their hometown’s land and waters since 1970, adamantly opposing new developments and threats to the local ecosystem, from opposing rumors of oil drilling off the coast of Montauk to the opposition of marina developments on Lake Montauk and Fort Pond, which they say would have drastically effected the water quality. In the years since their conception, CCOM has become one of the most successful and vocal environmental groups on the East End.
For more information on CCOM, their history and upcoming events, visit preservemontauk.com.