Environmentalists, Scientists Pledge 10 Billion Oysters By 2025, - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Environmentalists, Scientists Pledge 10 Billion Oysters By 2025, Watermen Skeptical

Posted: Feb 26, 2018 6:05 PM Updated:

EASTON, Md. - Drilling away, Eastern Shore waterman Guy Spurry was working hard on Monday - not oystering - but building his boat.

And in Annapolis the same morning, scientists and environmentalists say a new plan will have them working hard too. That plan: to bring 10 billion oysters to the Chesapeake Bay by the year 2025.

Spurry says he's skeptical.

"It may work and it may not. It's just a guessing game and it cost a lot of money to play these games," Spurry said.

It's a money game that some argue needs to be played.

"The more oysters we can have in the Bay, the better chance we can have filtering out this water that needs to get filtered out a lot of the time," Matt Pluta of the ShoreRivers organization in Easton, said.

ShoreRivers is one of 20 organizations banding together for the Billion Oyster Project. Pluta says, with more oysters, the Bay stands a better chance of getting cleaner.

"It's a win-win for everybody," Pluta said.

A win-win that Spurry worries may not include watermen like him.

"It's really not going to help the watermen. I don't know if it's going to help anybody," Spurry said.

And Capt. Rob Newberry of the Delmarva Fisheries Assocation told WBOC he agreed with Spurry's skepticism. Newberry said: "Oysters have such a high mortality rate, it doesn't make sense to throw money at something that may not work."

But environmentalists like Pluta argue planting oysters into the Bay is better than planting nothing at all.

"We need to be taking every effort we can to get more oysters in the water, so that those that do survive will create this base that will continune to reproduce."

 

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