Christine Cohen

State Senator

Christine Cohen

Deputy President Pro Tempore

Listening, Advocating & Getting Results

March 22, 2019

Cohen Supports Marine Spatial Plan for Long Island Sound

HARTFORD, CT – State Senator Christine Cohen (D-Guilford) joined a bipartisan group of legislators and environmental advocates to express her support for the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection’s (DEEP) Long Island Sound Blue Plan. This plan will utilize a science-based tool, known as marine spatial planning, to make informed decisions around future uses in and around the Long Island Sound. The first draft is now available online. The Blue Plan Advisory Committee has kicked off its official public comment period, which began on March 20 and will conclude on June 21, 2019. Sen. Cohen said the official public comment period presents an important opportunity for the public to weigh in.

“The Long Island Sound Blue Plan has been years in the making and has been a collaborative and cooperative process between several agencies and organizations,” said Sen. Cohen, who is co-chair of the Environment Committee. “Now the public has a chance to provide their input and present feedback. I encourage members of the public to reach out to agencies, organizations and legislators on alterations, additions or subtractions they feel should be made to allow us to move forward in an environmentally conscious manner. There is an email and mailing address which will allow those interested to respond. They can be found on the CT DEEP website.”

The Long Island Blue Plan is made possible due to Connecticut Public Act 15-66, which was enacted July 1, 2015. The Blue Plan will, through marine spatial planning, account for and coordinate the activities of coastal and ocean interests. The Blue Plan also encompasses communicating with communities and stakeholders affected by coastal and ocean interests. It will also preserve and protect the ecosystem’s functions and services. This plan will not create new regulations, instead it will be used in the state’s decision making process for DEEP and permitting programs and the state’s sitting council’s actions. Sen. Cohen said protecting the Sound should be a top priority.

“As a shoreline resident, shoreline legislator and co-chair of the Environment Committee, I could not be more thrilled with the unveiling of the draft of the Long Island Sound Blue Plan,” said Sen. Cohen. “There is so much happening and changing every day, from climate change, to coastal development, to new energy sources and new recreational sources, all changes which have a great impact on our land and waterways. We must be mindful of our beautiful, natural resources and uphold our duty to manage, care for and protect the Long Island Sound. Infrastructure proposals need to fall in line with those goals”

State Senator Tony Hwang (R-Fairfield) and State Representatives Jonathan Steinberg (D-Westport), Geraldo Reyes (D-Waterbury), Mary M. Mushinsky (D-Wallingford), Joe Gresko (D-Stratord) and Environment Committee co-chair Mike Demicco (D-Farmington) also voiced their support for the Long Island Sound Blue Plan and stressed the importance of protecting and preserving the Long Island Sound. The public can comment on the plan by emailing and can view the plan at Comments are reviewed by the Advisory Committee and others working on the Long Island Sound Blue Plan.