Letter to the Editor: Support the Floating Island Project

This letter was submitted and approved by: Alexa Corsiglia, Andrew Chong, Emily Erickson, Emma Scully, Patrick Knopf, Olivia Brill.


Marin School of Environmental Leadership is an environmentally focused group of Terra Linda High School students. We are a group of 6 freshmen within the program and we are working on campaigning and spreading awareness within the community about the Civic Center and the floating Island Project. 

Our group is working with The Gallinas Watershed Council to inform the public about the problems the Civic Center Lagoon is facing. The Civic Center is used for various activities which include the Farmers’ Market, jury duty, library, and the county fair. One of the most intriguing aspects of the Civic Center is the lagoon. The wildlife, vegetation, and overall beauty of the surrounding nature attract people of all  ages to take walks around the lagoon. 

One of the most common animals to be seen, the Canada Goose, spreads lots of organic waste around the paths and waterways. The organic waste contains harmful chemicals such as phosphates and nitrates that contaminate water and increase the intensity of algae blooms. Algae blooms cause the oxygen in the water to deplete causing fish and other living organisms to die off or suffocate. 

When first glancing at the water it appears gray and murky. You can’t even see the bottom! You may also see clumps of algae floating around the water from the goose waste being hosed off the paths and into the lagoon water. 

This is where floating islands come in, you may have already seen them floating in the water. The islands look like small sections of land with small plants beginning to grow on them. Floating islands naturally clean the water by removing nutrients and pollutants such as phosphorus, ammonia, and total suspended solids. The main goal for these islands is to make the lagoon more enjoyable and habitable to people, wildlife, and the ecosystem. 

To find out more about what you can do to help and to find out more about the lagoon and the floating island we would appreciate if you could fill out our survey. Here’s the QR code below.