From the Trump Administration proposing to eliminate all funding for the EPA’s Chesapeake Bay Program, to celebrity sharks, Bay scallops, Smith Island cake, and even burritos, it’s been a crazy year for the Bay. Here’s a look back at the most popular stories from our Facebook page in 2017.
- "It’s madness," CBF President Will Baker said in a video response to the Trump Administration’s proposal to eliminate the EPA’s Chesapeake Bay Program. And it seems you agree. The video was our most popular of the year and reached more than 1.3 million people!
And the fight is far from over. If you haven’t already, click here to send a message to Congress urging your representatives to stand up for the Bay and protect critical investment in this natural resource—our national treasure.
- With much outpouring of love for the Chesapeake, Smith Island cake, and the lady herself, almost 374,000 of you joined us in wishing Mary Ada—the most famous cake lady in the Chesapeake—a very happy birthday. The video in which the Smith Island baker teaches us the magic of making a Smith Island Cake was viewed 157,936 times. We hope you made cake in her honor in 2017!
- Earlier this spring, the world's biggest celebrity shark passed by the Chesapeake. It seems we were all a little star struck when great white Mary Lee came to the mouth of the Bay. Her story was our third most popular Facebook post reaching more than 235,000 people.
- Fantastic news for the Bay (and Facebook, reaching more than 220,000 Bay lovers). Our 2016 State of the Bay Report had our highest score ever! We'll cheers to an even better score in 2018.
- More exciting news for Bay wildlife: News of the return of Chesapeake Bay scallops just made the top five most popular posts of 2017, reaching a whopping 208,000 readers.
- We love harbor seals, our winter friends. It seems you do, too! As our sixth most popular post of 2017, news of the annual return of harbor seals to the Chesapeake Bay reached 167,559 people.
- Thank you, burrito lovers! Our seventh most popular post of 2017 reached 167,159 Chipotle fans with the news that for one day only, 50 percent of proceeds from all Chipotle stores in the DMV and Delaware went to #SaveTheBay! Thanks to the roughly 5,000 of you who dined at Chipotle on May 18, $25,000 went to Chesapeake restoration. Woohoo!
- Flying Blind—That's how CBF President Will Baker described saving the Chesapeake Bay without the critical support of EPA's Chesapeake Bay Program. Reaching 140,716 people, this WBALTV story covering the proposed elimination of the Chesapeake Bay Program was our eighth most popular post. Baker goes on to say: "What are we telling our kids, if we're saying that this program, which has worked so well, is being eliminated? That they can expect dirty water in their future?"
- How much is a saved Bay worth? Of course, in so many ways, as Mastercard would say, it's priceless. To be more specific, a recent peer-reviewed economic study reveals that the economic benefits provided by nature in the Chesapeake Bay watershed will total $130 billion annually when the Chesapeake Clean Water Blueprint is fully implemented. $130 billion! Year after year! This ninth most popular post of 2017 reached 136,001 people.
- Falling back through time, Ronald Reagan’s 1984 State of the Union Address came in as our tenth most popular post of 2017, reaching 117,533 people. In that address, President Reagan called for an increased EPA budget (in a time of constrained budgets) and said, "Preservation of our environment is not a liberal or conservative challenge, it's common sense." Reagan then went on to call for the clean-up of the Chesapeake Bay—"a special national resource."