The fallen debris and copious rainfall brought by Hurricane Maria, combined with an aging sanitary and storm water infrastructure has left both the sewers, streets and water bodies of the Estuary clogged and running with contaminated waters.
Upon this situation, the San Juan Bay Estuary Program acted immediately, unclogging sewers and removing debris. However, this work is costly, involving specialized heavy machinery, and staff time to manage these projects.
However, this work is costly, involving specialized heavy machinery at an estimated cost of $21,250 per community including staff time, the contract, and project management. The continuation of this work in communities around the watershed is essential. To cover the 5 priority communities identified, the San Juan Bay Estuary Program requires $106,500 in funding. The San Juan Bay Estuary Program needs your support to cover these immediate costs: consider adopting a community.
Looking to the long term beyond the immediate need to remove debris, the San Juan Bay Estuary will be supporting the eight municipalities in making substantial upgrades to storm sewer systems throughout the watershed, using green infrastructure. Green infrastructure is an environmentally sustainable technique to manage storm water that uses vegetation, soils, and natural processes to manage water and create healthier, more resilient urban environments. Specific projects will be guided by a Green Infrastructure Master Plan in the San Juan Bay Estuary watershed. The cost of designing and piloting this much-needed plan could range from 3 to 3.5 million dollars in the long term, with any contribution aiding in making this plan possible.
Mangroves, forests and dunes are nature’s protective barrier and mitigating force against extreme weather events. Understanding this, the San Juan Bay Estuary Program is already in the process of restoring affected dunes. As the forest cover of Puerto Rico watersheds have been decimated by Hurricanes Irma and Maria, an aggressive reforestation program becomes vital to secure freshwater resource availability to all its citizens.
The San Juan Bay Estuary Program estimates that it will require a total of $50,000 to reforest 5 critical areas in the metropolitan region, at a cost of $10,000 per area. Your donation can make possible the reforestation of one of these critical areas. The greater the funding available, the more areas we can impact, with an estimated cost of $2,000,000 for the entire metropolitan area in the long term.