In November, the Chesapeake Bay Program released the results of the first ever Chesapeake Bay watershed Citizen Stewardship Index, in which the Alliance for the Chesapeake Bay was an active participant in this project, along with the Chesapeake Bay Trust. Rooted in social science, the Index will directly inform the work of watershed organizations and government agencies that foster environmental stewardship. These groundbreaking results showed that watershed residents scored a 24 out of 100. This score is based on the adoption rate of 19 actions that individuals can take to improve water quality and environmental health, as well as the portion of the public that is volunteering in community efforts to improve the environment and engaging in civic activities on behalf of the environment. The data also forecasts future stewardship by measuring the willingness of residents to engage in certain actions and responses to perceptions that motivate environmentally responsible behaviors.

“The Alliance is focused on delivering on-the-ground projects in partnerships with local communities – this Stewardship Index enables us to be better information in how and where we prioritize our work,” said Kate Fritz, executive director of the Alliance for the Chesapeake Bay. “It is important that our decisions be based on data to ensure the best expenditure of public funds to provide for the greater benefit of increasing water quality, and quality of life, across the Chesapeake Bay watershed.”

For more information on the Citizen Stewardship Index and to view the results, please visit ChesapeakeProgress.