|COMMUNITY LEADERSHIP (Oct 2013)
Manhattan Wetlands and Wildlife association, (MWAWA) is a community grass roots organization serving Northern Manhattan, with plans to expand it’s coverage area over time. MWAWA is a community partner with New York Restoration Project (NYRP), and works cooperatively with Metro Transit Authority, (MTA), the Wild Bird Fund, Yonker Science Barge, and others.
Cataldi, as founder and executive director of MWAWA, seek guidance from many agencies and organizations on the city, state and federal level. Cataldi or MWAWA are members of Metropolitan Waterfront Alliance, Harbor Coalition, and the Citizens Advisory Committee of the Hudson Estuary Program, and a member of National Rehabilator Association, and a New York State Wildlife Rehabilitation Counsel Member. (MWAWA to date is not part the NYC Parks structure.)
In April of 2012, Mr. James Cataldi prior to founding and becoming the executive director of MWAWA, was given the highest honor given to an individual by US EPA for his environmental work including the work at North Cove in 2012 (see EPA Award tab). Cataldi earned the full support of public elected officials, (see below) area stake holders and the public.
MWAWA, also doing business as Inwood Hill and Sherman Creek Wildlife Trust is the official authorized Wetland Restoration Community Based Organization in New York City for the northern Sherman Creek Area, north of the 207th street bridge interconnecting Manhattan and the Bronx. (Block 2189, lot 50) (see google earth)
MWAWA, doing business as Inwood Hill Sherman Creek Wildlife Trust, is listed on the NYS Parks website as working along side the New York Restoration Project (NYRP), in the Sherman Creek area in the 20 year master plan workshop. (MWAWA receives no funding, oversight, nor guidance from, nor reports Into NYC Parks). MWAWA, doing business as Manhattan Urban Wildlife Trust, is recognized as the sole community based organization working at North Cove in the Sherman Creek Water Front Esplanade Master-Plan. (official wetlands restoration entity at Inwood North Cove) This plan was developed by New York City’s Economic Redevelopment Corporation’s (NYCEDC) named Sherman Creek Water Front Esplanade Master-Plan, and approved by Community Board 12 in February of 2010.
In February 2010, New York City’s Community Board 12, approved 87 million plus dollar NYCEDC Master Plan for the water-front between 208th street and 190th along the west side of the Harlem River. However this plan was never funded, and the actual cost we except would be substantially higher if ever approved. Despite no funding for the plan, MWAWA is fully operational making significant progress ongoing, and just self funded the next 10 months of the wildlife conservancy program at North Cove. Through our partnerships the restoration and enhancement expenses of the North Cove Project are covered ongoing for the foreseeable future. (Including the salt marsh initiative and others indicated herein)
****MWAWA seeks a a modification to the plan, and not develop the North Cove, and have MWAWA continue stewardship as a international migratory wildlife sanctuary, and develop a five zone salt water marsh, at no cost to the tax payer. (To date all funding over fours years of conservancy and restoration has been paid for)******
Under Cataldi’ s leadership over 1280 cubic yards of non toxic trash, and debris has been removed, all properly recycled, and 12 illegal toxic spills, (and years of illegal contamination dumping by local food vendors), have been stopped or cleanup. (Oct 2013) All part of ongoing extensive restoration of the rare fragile natural environment of the North Cove estuary. (Along with some environmental enhancement.). Wildlife, including migratory, protected and endangered, displaced by tradition urbanization typically employed throughout the NYC metro-area rely increasingly on Inwood North Cove. Growing evidence that international migratory wildlife are increasingly finding the North Cove Sanctuary’s natural habitat in their annual seasonal Migration Path, returning each year.
North Cove serves as a safe/healthy landing-pad for migrating water species, birds and multi-generational insects to stop, rest, heal, breed, and eat along North Americas’ primary north/south migration path . (In the cloistered Inlet) Each year more species rely on the cloistered sanctuary of this estuary inlet at Inwood’s North Cove. (only remaining partially-submerged tidal-estuary in the five borrows of NYC outside of the park system urbanization plan).
As Steward of this environmentally rare international coastal migratory fly-way migration landing-point, MWAWA watches over, enhances, protects and preserves the health of the estuary so it can offer healthy food and shelter to migrating species, (water and air born).
MWAWA also runs year round public events programming, annual celebrations and youth internship programs, in addition to conduction experiments and proof of concept projects in healthy food production! marsh plant generation! and free non carbon foot print energy production on a limited test pilot basis with to vision of future economic development of the area and creating high paying careers for Inwood.
Cataldi also is a practicing professional licensed wildlife rehabilitator, and an advocate on a range of environmental and public health issues, including Indian Point and fracking.
North Cove (NYC, Inwood’s North Cove) is easily found on Google Earth and Google Map as a Wildlife Sanctuary – and applying as an official National Federation Wildlife Site, making it accessible and visible to the world.