Looking to build the buzz, my friends and colleagues at Upwell, which uses social media to promote ocean issues and awareness, created the destined-to-be-iconic, I "oyster" NY image at left.
Alas, as Chris Len points out, it isn't as simple as dropping some oyster larvae in the sea, and sitting back, waiting for them to grow. For one thing, although much improved following passage of the Clean Water Act, the waters of New York Harbor and environs are sufficiently toxic that what oysters remain "are severely stressed by pollution.
Oyster diseases are rampant, and Hackensack oysters in test cages suffer from shells so thin that in many cases, crabs can claw right through them."
And while oysters are great at filtering water – well, that's great for the water and it's fine for the oysters, but it isn't as good for anyone who wants to eat those oysters. "If you are what you eat," says Len, "and oysters eat poop, and so oysters are poop, when you eat oysters, you're really just eating a giant sandwich."