News

$200K to Find Sand

Researchers will look offshore in the hunt for sand resources to delay coastal erosion. The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) and the state of Rhode Island signed a two-year cooperative agreement this month totaling $200,000 to evaluate offshore sand resources for coastal resilience and restoration planning. This agreement is aligned with the federal government’s commitment
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“Hurricane Rhody”: Are we prepared for the worst-case scenario?

If you were to combine the forces of the Hurricane of 1938, Hurricane Carol (’54), and Hurricane Esther (’61), it would be devastating to Rhode Island. The combined features of all these storms to create the hypothetical “Hurricane Rhody” might be the worst-case scenario for the state, with strong winds over 70 mph and considerable
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Rhode Island Coastal Property Guide

The Ocean State, with over 400 miles of coastline, is known for its beaches, bluffs, and scenic waterfronts. The water is a big a part of Rhode Island as the land, attracting long- and short-term visitors, and offering opportunities for recreation, industry, and simple enjoyment. As a result, the coastline is populated by businesses, important
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The Secret Life of Whelks

Local fisherman leads effort to better understand, manage whelk fishery… by Rudi Hempe Photos by Melissa Devine   Underwater, whelks are slow-moving sea snails that like to pry open and devour quahogs. They are also the unlikely focus  of a campaign by an energetic woman who catches them for a living to protect her chosen occupation.
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Taking Stock of Currents and Quahogs

RESEARCHERS SEEK BETTER UNDERSTANDING OF CLAM DISPERSAL IN NARRAGANSETT BAY by  ZoeGentes Over 39 million clams were harvested from Narragansett Bay in 2012, supporting a $5.15million commercial fishing industry, according to figures by Jeff Mercer, principal biologist in marine fisheries for the R.I. Department of Environmental Management (DEM). The estimates of clams in the Bay are used
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Building on Borrowed Time

How long can we live on the coast? by  Meredith Haas Aerial Photographs by John Supancic   Rhode Island is the second most densely populated state, and its 420  miles  of coastline are crowded with  homes and businesses, residents and tourists. The increasing rate of erosion and sea level rise, and the effects of coastal storms and flooding, are making
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Changing High Tides Challenge Public Access to Shoreline

Rhode Island’s shoreline is changing faster from sea level rise and erosion than the law can keep up with. The ‘mean high water’ line, which is set by averaging the high-tide mark over the previous 18 years, is the boundary the state uses to differentiate private coastal land and publicly owned ocean. But with a shifting and
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Catching Dinner: Quahogging Lessons with Jody King

A small group of people, rakes in hand, wade out into knee-deep water at the North Kingstown Town Beach to try their hand at clamming. As their rakes dig into the soft sand, something hard catches. One by one, quahogs are being pulled up and collected into a mesh bag. “We’ve got a hot spot
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Rhode Island Nitrogen Cycle Differs in Bay and Sound

Rhode Island Sea Grant-funded researcher Jeremy Rich from Brown University is highlighted for his work revealing the lack of a key nitrogen cycling process in Narragansett Bay. Anaerobic ammonium oxidation—anammox— is a recently discovered mechanism by which nitrogen moves between bottom sediments and the water column, mediated by anaerobic bacteria, which don’t need oxygen to sustain life.
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The Economics of Climate Change

How much are we willing to pay to live on the coast? To any economist things are typically broken down into “tradeoffs.” What will I give up and what will I get in return? At least that’s what Robert Johnston, an economics expert from Clark University, said at the Coastal State Discussion Series on February
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