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Welcome to CZ-Mail, the monthly email newsletter from the Massachusetts Office of Coastal Zone Management (CZM). This update provides information on major CZM initiatives, available tools and publications, upcoming workshops and events, grants, contracting opportunities, job openings, coastal legislation, and other news of interest to people working on coastal issues. More information about CZM's programs, publications, and other coastal topics can be found online at http://www.mass.gov/czm/. If you have suggestions on how to make CZ-Mail more useful, would like to add your name to the mailing list, or would like to have your name removed, please email your request to CZ-Mail@state.ma.us.
All links on this web page were current and working on the date of publication.
Chronicle to Highlight CZM's Coast Guide
Later this month, Chronicle, the daily news magazine on Channel 5, will air a show on public access to the Massachusetts coast. The segment will feature interviews with Irene Del-Bono from the state's Department of Conservation and Recreation on public rights at the shoreline and with CZM Director Susan Snow-Cotter on the Massachusetts Coast Guide to Boston and the North Shore. Developed by CZM, the Coast Guide provides user-friendly information to help people access the shore (including places not normally found on road maps or lists of tourist attractions). The Coast Guide includes 22 maps and brief descriptions of nearly 400 public access sites from Salisbury to Hingham. Go to the Chronicle website for details on when the show will air. For information on ordering Coast Guide, click here.
Coastal Caucus Meeting - The Massachusetts Coastal Caucus, chaired by Senator Bruce Tarr (R-First Essex and Middlesex) and Representative Eric Turkington (D-Barnstable, Dukes, and Nantucket) and composed of a bipartisan group of legislators, met on April 14. The meeting included a presentation on liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminals and wind farm proposals by CZM Assistant Director Deerin Babb-Brott (currently Acting Director of the Massachusetts Environmental Policy Act Office) and a presentation about ocean management by CZM Director Susan Snow-Cotter and Director of the Division of Marine Fisheries Paul Diodati. The next Coastal Caucus meeting will focus on several coastal issues, including proposed ocean management legislation.
Characterizing Ocean-Based Human Uses in State Waters - Penobscot Bay Media and TerraLogic GIS will be working with CZM to characterize human uses in state waters as a first step in establishing a baseline of ocean use information to inform ocean planning and management. This project, which is to be completed by June 30, includes development of a detailed report characterizing human uses in state waters and a statewide geographic information system (GIS) geodatabase illustrating these uses. The project team will acquire data sets, such as the location and extent of navigation channels or point locations of infrastructure and activities (e.g., industrial activities in Boston Harbor), and gather other information. The Massachusetts Ocean Management Task Force recommended developing a human use characterization in the "Management Tools" section of its final report, Waves of Change: The Massachusetts Ocean Management Task Force Report and Recommendations. For the full Waves of Change report click here.
Massachusetts Ocean Education Guide Website - As part of Executive Office of Environmental Affairs (EOEA) Secretary Ellen Roy Herzfelder's Ocean Education Program, CZM has developed a dynamic directory of ocean education resources. The directory includes field trips, speakers, curricula, publications, parent/child interactive programs, after school programs, workshops, films/videos, newsletters/periodicals, library/resource centers, volunteer opportunities, and other programs designed to assist K-12 educators in teaching about the Commonwealth's ocean resources. To access the Massachusetts Ocean Education Guide and/or to submit an ocean education program for inclusion, click here.
Secretary's Award for Excellence in Ocean Education
On behalf of Secretary Herzfelder, CZM Director Susan Snow-Cotter presented the first annual Secretary's Award for Excellence in Ocean Education at the Massachusetts Marine Educators 29th Annual Conference in Woods Hole on April 30. The Award was presented to the Massachusetts Marine Educator of the Year, Susan Wieber Nourse, the initial holder of the Jaeger Chair in Marine Science at Tabor Academy, "The School by the Sea," nestled on the shore of Sippican Harbor in Marion. Nourse directs Tabor's Schaefer Oceanology Lab as a regional center for marine science studies, creating innovative classroom curricula and field practica, sharing these academic programs with her students and exporting validated lesson plans to educators nationwide. She was also elected the president of Massachusetts Marine Educators.
Superior Court Upholds CZM Designated Port Area Decision
The Massachusetts Superior Court upheld CZM's 2002 decision to redraw the boundaries of the Charlestown section of the Mystic River Designated Port Area (DPA). The decision, based on the recommendations of a CZM study published in October of 2002, modifies the DPA boundary to exclude three properties, and there were three challenges to the decision from these property owners. The Court found that CZM's decision was not arbitrary or capricious, was adequately supported by substantial evidence, and could not be found to cause a taking. The Court ruled for the Commonwealth on all claims supporting agencies' discretion to make policy decisions amid competing interpretations of the agency's regulations. CZM had not had a DPA decision challenged in court before, and the Court's ruling helps to clarify CZM's discretionary authority, which is sanctioned by legislative and regulatory rules. CZM's designation decision and study are available on the CZM Publications web page, under Regulatory Decisions, Reports, and Notices.
Secretary Awards Grants in Chatham
On April 1, Secretary Herzfelder announced $53,312 through the Coastal Nonpoint Source Pollution (Coastal NPS) Grant Program and $73,000 through CZM's Wetlands Restoration Program (WRP) Wetland Restoration Grants for Priority Projects Program to fund water quality improvements projects on Cape Cod. The Town of Chatham received $28,800 in Coastal NPS funds to assess nonpoint sources of pollution in the Cockle Cove Creek Watershed. The Town of Oak Bluffs received $5,561 to analyze nitrogen isotope ratios in shellfish in Martha's Vineyard coastal ponds. The Buzzards Bay Action Committee, in partnership with the Greater New Bedford Regional Vocational Technical High School, received $18,951 to develop detailed stormwater drainage network maps and GIS data sets for several areas of the Buzzards Bay Watershed.
Through the Wetland Restoration Grants for Priority Projects Program, the Association to Preserve Cape Cod received $10,000 to continue recruiting and training volunteers to use WRP program protocols to monitor restoration progress at six Cape Cod projects sites. Also, the Thorton Burgess Society was awarded a $23,000 grant to assist in the implementation of the East Sandwich Game Farm Salt Marsh Restoration Project and the Towns of Barnstable and Orleans each received $20,000 for culvert improvements at Bridge Creek Salt Marsh and Skaket Beach Road, respectively.
Click here for more information about this event, the funded projects, and to review the press release. This year, 10 Coastal NPS Grants totaling approximately $215,000 and seven WRP grants totaling $100,000 were awarded. For more information about the WRP, click here.
Coastal Nonpoint Source Pollution Grants
CZM has awarded 10 recipients funding (totaling approximately $215,000) through the 2005 Coastal NPS Grant Program, which provides funding to public and nonprofit organizations for projects that improve coastal water quality. Projects range from assessment, identification, and characterization of nonpoint sources (NPS) of pollution to development of transferable tools for NPS control to design and implementation of innovative demonstration projects that utilize nonpoint source best management practices. Secretary Herzfelder announced the following grants:
CZM's WRP has awarded nine recipients funding through its 2005 Wetland Restoration Grants for Priority Projects Program. This year's grant awards focused on two components of wetland restoration--execution of restoration construction and construction-related activities and pre- or post-construction monitoring of wetlands restoration. In total, WRP awarded $100,000 in funding for project tasks that range from training volunteers for the monitoring of restoration sites to the fabrication of properly-sized culverts to restore normal tidal flow to saltwater marshes. At regional events, Secretary Herzfelder announced the following grants:
Knowles and O'Reilly Named Environmental Heroes
Honoring volunteers for their "tireless efforts to preserve and protect our nation's environment," the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) presented 37 Environmental Hero Awards in conjunction with Earth Day on April 22. Two Massachusetts residents received this prestigious award. Robert "Stubby" Knowles was honored posthumously for his 33 years of service as Gloucester's shellfish constable, where he is widely considered the patriarch of coastal wetland protection and restoration throughout the region. Michael O'Reilly was recognized for his efforts to protect and restore coastal resources in Dartmouth, including his salt marsh restoration and fish passage efforts. Click here for more on the NOAA 2005 Environmental Heroes and click here for a MarineFisheries article and click here for a National Marine Fisheries Service Northeast Office press release on Stubby Knowles.
Coastal Hazards Characterization
CZM selected Applied Coastal Research and Engineering, Inc. of Mashpee to develop a South Shore Coastal Hazards Characterization Atlas illustrating shoreline variables to help Conservation Commissioners and other local officials to identify projects that may be vulnerable to coastal hazards. The atlas, to be completed this year, will provide information to South Shore decision makers for review of projects on ocean-facing shorelines from Hull through Plymouth to the Cape Cod Canal and will feature coastal process data sets. As funding permits, EOEA and CZM plan to expand the study area and characterize additional regions along the Massachusetts coastline.
Evaluating CZM Grant-Funded Stormwater Systems
CZM has selected the Horsley Witten Group to evaluate stormwater best management practices (BMP) funded through the Coastal Pollution Remediation (CPR) Grant Program. The project includes conducting site inspections of 26 stormwater treatment system installations funded through CPR since 2000 and recommending improved operation and maintenance methods for each system. Where possible, the evaluations will include reviewing water quality, beach closure, and shellfish bed data to determine whether the selected practices have achieved the intended pollution remediation goals. For more information about the CPR program, click here.
Gulf of Maine Action Plan Grants Announced
The Gulf of Maine Council on the Marine Environment has awarded its 2005 Action Plan Grants to three Massachusetts recipients:
Combined RFR for CPR and Coastal NPS Grant Programs - CZM will soon release a request for responses (RFR) to solicit proposals for both the Coastal Pollutant Remediation (CPR) and Coastal Nonpoint Source Pollution (Coastal NPS) grant programs. Both programs will begin on July 1 and run through June 30, 2006. The CPR and Coastal NPS grant programs will fund a variety of projects that address local nonpoint source pollution issues. CZM will host three informational meetings to discuss program eligibility, desired projects, timelines, and more on:
Coastal Areas of Critical Environmental Concern (ACEC) Grant Program - On May 9, CZM will release a request for responses (RFR) for the Coastal ACEC Grant Program, which provides funding to groups working on stewardship projects in coastal ACECs. The grants provide communities with funding to implement planning, outreach, and monitoring projects that include but are not limited to resource management planning, assessing local bylaws and regulations, making brochures and interpretive signs, or initiating volunteer water quality monitoring programs. To review the RFR, go to the state's Commonwealth Access & Procurement system, Comm-PASS, click "Search for solicitations," and search document "ENV 05 CZM 12." The deadline for submissions is June 17.
Smart Growth Implementation Assistance Grants - The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is soliciting applications from communities that seek assistance with policy analysis or public participatory processes to guide implementation of smart growth principles in community development. Selected communities will receive assistance from a team of experts organized by EPA and other national partners. The deadline to apply is May 19. For more information and application materials, click here.
NOAA Human Dimensions Research Graduate Assistantships - To build its capacity for human dimensions research, the NOAA National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science (NCCOS) is funding two Ph.D. graduate research assistant positions with the Human Dimensions Research Unit of the University of Massachusetts-Amherst for Fall 2005. One assistantship will focus on examining the extent to which coral reef ecosystem management is consistent with the basic goals and interests of society. The second assistantship will focus on examining the extent to which an estuary or bay is providing society with benefits in relation to the ecological condition of that estuary or bay. For more information or application materials, contact Professor Dave Loomis at Loomis@forwild.umass.edu or at (413) 545-6641. For more information about the Human Dimensions Research Unit, click here.
Ernest Hollings Visiting Scholar Program - The Hollings Marine Laboratory (HML) in Charleston, South Carolina, is accepting applications for the Ernest F. Hollings Visiting Scholar Program. The program is accepting proposals from established investigators seeking collaborative and highly interactive research experience with scientific groups at the HML. Proposals for both short- (1-4 months) and long-term (a maximum duration of 18 months) positions are acceptable. The program is able to provide limited salary replacement and relocation expenses. Applications are due June 15. For more information and an application, contact Courtney Burge at email@example.com or at (834) 762-8980. For more information about the HML, click here.
Reminders - The following funding opportunity listed in the last CZ-Mail is still available:
MPA Center New England Public Meeting - NOAA's National Marine Protected Area (MPA) Center will host a New England Region Public Dialogue meeting on May 16 at the Gulf of Maine Research Institute, located at 350 Commercial Street in Portland, Maine. The purpose of the meeting is to get the New England public's input and ideas for a national MPA system. Due to limited space, please register by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org by May 6. For more information, click here.
Reminders - The following public comment period listed in the last CZ-Mail is still open:
New Hampshire Coastal Program Newsletter - The New Hampshire Coastal Program (NHCP) has started The Rip Tide, a bi-monthly electronic newsletter discussing projects, grants, and new publications. The first edition is posted online at www.des.nh.gov/Coastal/Resources/rip_tide/March05_RipTide.pdf. For other NHCP publications and resources, click here.
A Loon's Watershed Journey - The Maine Coastal Program has published The Watershed Journey of Linus Loon, designed for grades 3-7. The book teaches students the basics of watershed ecology and nonpoint source pollution and encourages environmental appreciation, awareness, and stewardship. The story, written by Josh Atwood and illustrated by artist Thaddeus Lyford, follows Linus Loon as he migrates through a watershed to the ocean. An accompanying Educator Handbook provides background information on the central ecological concepts and a Student Handbook includes vocabulary and questions for each chapter. These publications are available to educators free of charge. To request a printed copy, contact the Maine Coastal Program at (207) 287-1486. To download electronic copies, click here.
NOAA's Teacher at Sea - NOAA has released Teacher At Sea, Miss Cook's Voyage on the Ronald H. Brown, a publication for middle school students and teachers, by educators Mary Cook and Diane Stanitski and illustrator Bruce Cowden. The book, written at the middle school level, discusses the research conducted aboard the ship, features science and math activities, and offers a glossary of terms and is available to teachers by request to the NOAA Outreach Unit at email@example.com. For more information, click here.
Smart Growth Shareware - Smart Growth America is offering Smart Growth Shareware, a free CD-ROM featuring 100 smart growth publications, downloadable presentation and fact sheets, and other resources to assist in creating livable, well-planned communities. To request a copy, click here and then click "Just Out!"
Smart Growth Air and Urban Forest Reports - The Funders Network for Smart Growth and Livable Communities has released Air Quality and Smart Growth: Planning for Cleaner Air, which explores the connection between development patterns and air pollution, and Urban Forests: New Tools for Growing More Livable Communities, which provides a road map for improving urban environments by fitting natural resources more effectively into a city's infrastructure. Click here to download these publications.
Still Available - These products and publications, listed in the last CZ-Mail, are still available:
Online Resource Clearinghouse for Growing Communities - The University of New Hampshire (UNH) has established an online Resource Clearinghouse for Rapidly Growing Communities--searchable by topic--to provide information and resources to help address sprawl. The Clearinghouse was created for growing New England communities that need a fast and simple way to access knowledge on preserving character, conserving open space and natural resources, and protecting the environment and human health. For more information, click here.
Hurricane and Extreme Storm Impact Studies - The U.S. Geological Survey Coastal and Marine Geology Program has unveiled a new website with detailed information on its research into the extent and causes of coastal impacts of hurricanes and extreme storms. The website discusses three integrated components of investigation, including scanning airborne laser altimetry (known as Lidar), oblique aerial and video photography, and ground surveys. To learn more about how this research will improve the capability to predict coastal change that results from severe tropical and extra-tropical storms, click here.
Drugs from the Deep Lecture - Amy Wright, Ph.D., director of the Oceanographic Institution Division of Biomedical Marine Research in Fort Pierce, Florida will present Drugs from the Deep: Exploring Deep-Water Habitats for New Medicines, which highlights the Institution's exploration and examination of deep-sea invertebrates to discover new medicines, at the New England Aquarium's Exploration Center's Immersive Theater on May 2 at 7 p.m. The lecture, sponsored by the Lowell Institute, is free to the public on a first-come, first-served basis.
Regional Invasive Species Management Panel Meeting - The Northeast Aquatic Nuisance Species (NEANS) Panel is meeting May 4 and 5 at the Urban Forestry Center in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, to discuss regional invasive species management issues. For an agenda, directions, and summaries of previous NEANS meetings, click here. To register, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
MPA Workshops - The New England Fishery Management Council has scheduled two workshops that will focus on the use of marine protected areas (MPAs) as a tool for managing fisheries. The public meetings are scheduled for May 5-6 in West Greenwich, Rhode Island, and for May 10-11 in Ogunquit, Maine. The Council seeks information to be used in drafting its own MPA policy. For more information, click here, and then click "New England Fishery Council To Hold MPA Workshops" under "What's New?"
Maine Beaches Conference - The 2005 Maine Beaches Conference, The Draw of the Sea: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow, will be held on August 17 at the York Community College in Wells, Maine. Session themes include beach economy, society, and environment; tourism and its ties to the beach; rights to the sand; beach development through the centuries; monitoring beach water quality and profile changes; and planning with beach stakeholders. Field sessions at the Wells National Estuarine Research Reserve will follow the conference. For more information, contact Kristen Whiting-Grant at email@example.com. Information is also available at http://www.wellsreserve.org/ctip.htm.
Maritime Heritage Education Conference - The Maritime Heritage Education Conference will be held from November 18-20 in Norfolk, Virginia. The conference brings educators together to promote the sharing of maritime heritage education partnerships, programs, and products. For more information, click here.
Sustainable Beaches Conference - The Clean Beaches Council will host the second annual Sustainable Beaches Conference on October 31-November 2 at the Renaissance Vinoy Resort in St. Petersburg, Florida. The goal of the 2005 conference is to build and expand upon networks and to continue to inform citizens and professionals about the importance of keeping America's beaches safe, healthy, and sustainable. For more information, click here.
Reminders - The following calendar items, posted in the last CZ-Mail, are still to come:
Historic Development Trends as a Basis for Predicting Future Growth - A new set of urban planning tools is helping New Hampshire coastal resource managers to understand historic development trends and predict future growth. Through a grant from the Cooperative Institute for Coastal and Estuarine Environmental Technology, researchers from the UNH and Applied Geosolutions, LLC, have analyzed aerial photos from New Hampshire's Rockingham and Strafford counties to create land use data that are archived in a GIS database. The database and a companion spatial trend computer model can be used by coastal managers and others to track changes in the region's development from 1962 to 1998 and to forecast the magnitude and location of future development--information that communities need to better manage watersheds, estuaries, open land, and other resources. For more information, click here.
Brightman Street Bridge Summer Operation Change - The U.S. Coast Guard has changed the drawbridge operation of the Brightman Street Bridge, across the Taunton River between Fall River and Somerset. The bridge will remain closed to pleasure craft traffic from 7-9:30 a.m. and 4-6:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, except holidays, from June 1 through August 31. The drawbridge will open for commercial vessels.