Nature or Nurture for Sandy-Damaged Shorelines

Prior to Sandy, beaches with artificial barriers and nearby development in New York, as well as Rhode Island, had fallen behind on sand nourishment and preservation, and subsequently suffered significant damage from the storm. Misquamicut State Beach in Westerly went decades without new sand. The shoreline has a significant fixed infrastructure with roads and parking lots,
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2014 Sea Grant Baird Summary Report

We are pleased to share the summary report from our “Staying Afloat: Adapting Waterfront Businesses to Rising Seas and Extreme Storms/The 2014 Ronald C. Baird Sea Grant Science Symposium.” This event brought businesses, experts, academics and government decision-makers together to examine adaptation problems and solutions for coastal communities. With a changing shoreline, flooding and erosion from storms and
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Offshore Wind Farm Marks Milestone in Energy Development and Marine Spatial Planning

As development of the first U.S. offshore wind farm begins in Block Island Sound, many Rhode Islanders and others are praising the state’s efforts in marine spatial planning and the role of the Ocean Special Area Management Plan (SAMP) in the federal regulation and permitting process. Deepwater Wind, a Providence-based developer, received permission to begin its
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URI Graduate Student Awarded NMFS-Sea Grant Fellowship

Congratulations to URI Environmental and Natural Resource Economics graduate student Andrew Carr-Harris, who was awarded a 2015 National Marine Fisheries Service fellowship in coordination with the National Sea Grant Office (NMFS-Sea Grant Fellowship). The research proposed by Carr-Harris will develop econometric models of commercial fishery landings (amount of fish harvested) in Northeast U.S. ports. These
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Southern New England’s Horseshoe Crab Population Being Bled Dry

By Abbey Green | Courtesy of ecoRI News Older than dinosaurs, horseshoe crabs have survived plenty. But human impact may be the threat that could wash them out of the Atlantic. For more than 350 million years, these living fossils have crawled ashore underneath the light of a full moon and laid their eggs in
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StormTools Demonstration in North Kingstown Helps Residents Understand Flood Risk

On July 8th, Janet Freedman, coastal geologist for the Rhode Island Coastal Resources Management Council met with a group of local residents at the North Kingstown Free Library to demonstrate STORMTOOLS, a new online mapping service for property owners in the Ocean State.  Used to support studies of coastal management, STORMTOOLS predicts impacts of sea
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Beach SAMP Shares Progress With Stakeholders

  Damage from coastal storms and the anticipation of sea level rise has dramatically increased public interest in what can be done to mitigate shoreline impacts. The Shoreline Change Special Area Management Plan (also known as Beach SAMP) is expanding the tools and research necessary to prepare the Ocean State for impending sea level rise.
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Harmful Algae Species Identified in Narragansett Bay

In Narragansett Bay, the arrival of warm weather can lead to algal blooms that can form large rusty red or green mats on the water surface, which can create low-oxygen environments and contaminate shellfish – a potential harm to the state’s $14 million oyster and clam wild and farmed harvests. This rapid growth of phytoplankton is caused by temperate
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Ocean Planning to Balance Demands of Coastal Waters

In case you missed Capitol Hill’s Ocean Week, sponsored by the National Marine Sanctuary Foundation, here’s a segment of OceansLive featuring Rhode Island Sea Grant’s Extension Director Jennifer McCann. McCann was part of a panel discussing how ocean planning can defuse conflicts between various users of coastal waters, and how to maximize the value of oceans.
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Wind Farm Construction, July 2015: Guidelines for Mariners and Fishermen

Seven years after its initial proposal to develop a wind farm in the waters off Rhode Island, Deepwater Wind will begin construction this month to install five, 6-megawatt wind turbines 3 miles southeast of Block Island. This progress puts the project on its way to becoming the nation’s first offshore wind farm. This phase of construction will consist of
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