The Great Bay estuary is a large, tidally-dominated estuarine system comprised of two large, inland embayments – Great Bay and Little Bay – connected to the Gulf of Maine by the powerful tides of the Piscataqua River, which forms the border between New Hampshire and Maine. With a total drainage area of 930 square miles spanning 39 communities in New Hampshire and another ten in Maine, the Great Bay estuary receives fresh water flows from seven major rivers, and several small creeks. The mixing of these fresh waters with the influx of tidal flows provides for a unique, sensitive, and highly productive natural resource that stands at the center of New Hampshire’s coastal heritage.
Melissa Paly is CLF’s Great Bay – Piscataqua Waterkeeper, working to advocate, engage, and inspire people to protect and restore the rivers, bays and coast that make the Seacoast such a spectacular place to live, work and play.Before joining CLF, Melissa was a principal of CrossCurrent Communications where she provided communications strategy, PR and media production services to many state agencies, businesses and non-profits focused on environmental and social issues throughout Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Maine. Prior to founding her own firm, she worked for USEPA Region 1, the Natural Resources Defense Council, and World Resources Council. Melissa holds a BA in geology from Yale College and a Master of Forest Science from Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies. An avid telemark skier, sailor, sea kayaker and gardener, Melissa currently serves as a trustee of the Kittery Land Trust, Maine Coast Heritage Trust, and Yale Forestry School Alumni Board.
41 Atkinson Street Box 10
Portsmouth, New Hampshire 03801