Environmental “Ed Shed” 2020-05-14T21:07:36+00:00

Project Description

Environmental “Ed Shed”

Project Lead: North Brooklyn Community Boathouse (formerly North Brooklyn Boat Club)
2014 Project Partners: Newtown Creek Alliance; Sarah Durand, Professor, LaGuardia Community College, City University of New York; Jane Beckwith and Kestrel Perez, St. Joseph’s College; Boy Scouts of America, Troop 469 “Pride of Greenpoint;” and North Brooklyn Parks Alliance (formerly Open Space Alliance)
2018 Project Partners: Eco-Schools, Environmental Science Department at LaGuardia Community College, Friends of Bushwick Inlet Park, Newtown Creek Alliance, NYCH20
Project Locations: North Brooklyn Community Boathouse at 437 McGuinness Boulevard / 41 Ash Street; and Greenpoint-wide
Total GCEF Funding: $110,986
2014 GCEF Grant: $24,426 2018 GCEF Grant: $86,560
Total Matching Contribution: $26,900
2014 Matching Contribution: $3,600 2018 Matching Contribution: $23,300
2014 Project Completed: September 2015 2018 Project Completed: July 2019

In 2014, through a competitive process, North Brooklyn Community Boathouse (NBCB) received a $24,426 GCEF grant (and provided $3,600 in matching funds) to support ongoing environmental education programming at the Education Shed, aka “ED Shed.” Established by NBCB, in conjunction with LaGuardia Community College, the ED Shed is a hands-on environmental education and research center that connects Greenpoint residents to their surrounding waterways.

The GCEF grant was used to develop and expand community workshops, as well as training for educators on marine sciences and aquatic conditions specific to Newtown Creek and the East River, including water testing, wildlife monitoring, and plankton sampling. GCEF also supported the creation and maintenance of an instructional aquarium, which holds species of fish, crabs, mollusks, and invertebrates native to Newtown Creek.

In 2018, through another competitive process, NBCB was awarded $86,560 in additional funding from GCEF for equipment, personnel, and materials, including multi-user canoes. This GCEF grant was matched by $23,300 in funding from the project. This additional funding allowed the Ed Shed to further establish itself as a local educational hub by expanding its community-based and on-the-water “Floating Classroom” environmental programming.

Since GCEF funding ended, the ED Shed has continued to host numerous field trips and educational events, and ED Shed programming continues to operate using much of the equipment purchased by GCEF funds.

  • In 2015, educated 845 community members at 48 events about marine sciences and aquatic conditions specific to Newtown Creek and the East River
  • Involved 15 different local community groups and education institutions in the education of Greenpoint residents about their waterways
  • Supported the creation of an instructional aquarium displaying species native to Newtown Creek, including local fish, crab, mollusks, and invertebrates
  • Created educational materials including a poster explaining the New York City sewer system and combined sewer overflows, and a workbook to enhance programming
  • In 2018, acquired two new large 29-foot canoes, several smaller canoes, canoe paddle docks, and safety equipment
  • In 2018, held 12 Open House events
  • In 2018 held 21 trips with college-aged students, including students from Pratt, St Joseph’s College, LaGuardia Community College and The City College of New York, NYU, and the New School as well as middle school students from Metropolitan Expeditionary Learning School
  • In 2018, held 8 themed public trips (including “Birdwatching”, “Ship-Spotting”, and “Understanding Combined Sewage Overflows”) with a total of 390 participants
  • In 2018, held 36 public paddles on Greenpoint waterways, including Newtown Creek with, over 1,000 participants