ANS comments on proposed Mallows Bay – Potomac River National Marine Sanctuary (NMS)

Benzonia resting on ghost ship Caribou‘s stern (Photo: Don Shomette/NOAA)

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Office of National Marine Sanctuaries has prepared a draft environmental impact statement/management plan that considers three boundary alternatives for the proposed designation of Mallows Bay-Potomac River as an National Marine Sanctuary.  

Mallows Bay National Marine Sanctuary Alternative D Map (NOAA).

ANS members and supporters consider Mallows Bay to be a valuable and unique historic and natural resource and strongly embrace the designation of Sanctuary for Mallows Bay and its surrounding environment. We support Alternative D as the best option to protect the many unique resources of this area for the following reasons: 

  • Alternative D, the largest boundary designation, includes estuarine habitats, valuable for both their ecological and historical significance, that are not protected in the other alternatives.
  • The proposed Sanctuary would require additional infrastructure to support its use as an educational and research facility, which is only available in Alternative D.
  • NOAA should include the areas covered by Alternative D now because their value means they will inevitably need protection in the future.


Click here to read NOAA’s analysis of the alternatives for the proposed Mallows Bay – Potomac River National Marine Sanctuary designation. Click here to read more about NOAA’s study and decision process for the Sanctuary.

Click here to read our March 17, 2017 letter.

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