Photo: Jane Thomas, IAN Image Library (


Get the Dirt Out (GTDO) is a project being implemented by local Waterkeeper programs across the Chesapeake and Atlantic Coastal Bays watersheds to protect our waterways from damage caused by sediment-laden runoff from construction sites and land development.

The Assateague COASTKEEPER®, the education and advocacy arm of Assateague Coastal Trust, is leading the GTDO effort for the Coastal Bays region.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has long recognized stormwater runoff as one of the leading causes of impairment to our nation’s waters.  In response, the EPA developed stormwater regulations.  These regulations require that that all construction sites one acre or larger must comply with the terms and conditions in the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) Stormwater Discharge Associated with Construction Activity General Permit (General Permit).  In Maryland, the Maryland Department of Environment (MDE) issues NPDES permits for construction sites.  But MDE does not have the capacity to effectively monitor all construction sites’ compliance with its stormwater regulations. 

That is where the Assateague Coastkeeper, with your help, comes into the picture.  We will be training volunteers to monitor construction sites in the Coastal Bays watershed to ensure they are in compliance with stormwater regulations and not muddying our waters with sediment and toxic-laden runoff.

Please join us in this extremely important project and sign up to be a volunteer, or just come to a volunteer training workshop and see what we're all about.

Together, we can Get The Dirt Out of our Coastal Bays and keep our watershed safe and clean.