It’s hard to believe now, but there was a time when New York’s waterways were teeming with oysters. They were not only great for eating but also served a very vital function in our ecosystem: they helped filter the water. Alas, they ended up being too good as food, were overharvested, and any beds that did survive were seriously harmed or killed by the extreme amount of pollution poured into all of our waterways over the past 300 years. But there is an organization trying to bring the oysters back (but no, not for eating): Billion Oyster Project (BOP). BOP serves two purposes; it engages students in STEM education programs while also working to restore our harbor. BOP was actually founded in 2010 as an extension of student projects at the New York Harbor School on Governors Island. Continue reading
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