|Mass.Gov Home Page||State Agencies||State A-Z Topic List|
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. Additional information about CZM's programs, publications, and other coastal topics can be found on the CZM website. Please feel free to share CZ-Mail with colleagues and friends—and if you have suggestions for CZ-Mail, would like your name added to the mailing list, or would like 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.
Massachusetts Ocean Management Plan
The Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA) released the draft Massachusetts Ocean Management Plan in July for public review and comment. EEA continued to receive public comments through November 23, as mandated by the Oceans Act of 2008. EEA and its agencies are reviewing the more than 100 comments received and will develop appropriate responses and changes to the draft plan. The Oceans Act sets a deadline of December 31, 2009 for final promulgation of a plan that balances protection of marine resources with uses such as renewable energy development. See the Draft Massachusetts Ocean Management Plan website for links to the two-volume draft plan and all maps and figures. To receive periodic ocean plan updates, send an email to email@example.com.
Climate Change Advisory Committee Work Continues
Efforts are underway to finalize the report of the state's Climate Change Adaptation Advisory Committee (CCAAC). The document will contain a summary of predicted changes to key parameters, general assessments of vulnerabilities, and recommendations for strategies to alleviate current and future impacts of a changing climate. The recommendations of the CCAAC are based on the work of six subcommittees: Coastal Zone and Ocean, Natural Resources and Habitat, Local Economy and Government, Human Health and Welfare, Key Infrastructure, and Land Use. Stay tuned to CZ-Mail for information on how to obtain copies of the report and for other future details.
This year, COASTSWEEP celebrated its 22nd anniversary. Part of an international effort organized by the Ocean Conservancy, COASTSWEEP is the statewide annual beach cleanup sponsored by CZM and the Urban Harbors Institute (UHI) of UMass Boston. On September 19, EEA Undersecretary for Environment Philip Griffiths and CZM's COASTSWEEP Coordinator Robin Lacey welcomed 200 dedicated volunteers to kick off the 2009 COASTSWEEP at the Nantasket Beach in Hull. Together these volunteers collected more than 3,000 pounds of debris. Although final results from the 2009 cleanups are still pending, preliminary reports show that approximately 2,100 COASTSWEEP volunteers cleaned more than 112 miles of coastline, river bank, marsh, seafloor, and lakeshore in Massachusetts—collecting 22,638 pounds of debris from 89 locations. CZM and UHI would like to thank all of the dedicated volunteers that participated in COASTSWEEP 2009 and our sponsors for their generous support. This year's sponsors included Bank of America, Massachusetts Marine Trades Association, Weston Solutions, and Tronex. For more information about this year's efforts, see the COASTSWEEP website. If you are interested in getting involved in future COASTSWEEP cleanups, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Straits Pond Restoration Project Breaks Ground
Construction began on the Straits Pond wetland restoration project to reconstruct and enlarge a deteriorating culvert under Route 228 at the borders of Hull, Cohasset, and Hingham (at the spot known locally as West Corner). This project, the largest tidal restoration project to date in Massachusetts, will restore 94 acres of tidal pond habitat and improve tidal flow to a critically impaired estuary, which is part of the Weir River Area of Critical Environmental Concern (ACEC). In addition to repairing this deficient transportation infrastructure, the project will also eliminate seasonal infestations of midges, which can inhabit such degraded systems. This project poses many unique challenges. Three towns all share part ownership of the structure (which is also classified as a dam) and many of the utilities that service Hull run through the culvert and need to be maintained during construction. Maintenance of a tidal connection between the pond and estuary during construction is also necessary to sustain the estuarine ecology of the pond and to release water during storms. Project partners include CZM, the Division of Ecological Restoration (DER), the Department of Conservation and Recreation's ACEC Program, the Massachusetts Bays Program, the Massachusetts Highway Department, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the Conservation Law Foundation/Restore America's Estuaries program, the towns of Hull, Cohasset, and Hingham, and the Straits Pond and Weir River Watershed Associations. Project construction will take about one year.
Environmental Education Grants - The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is seeking applications for Environmental Education Grants to fund environmental education projects that promote environmental stewardship and help develop knowledgeable and responsible students, teachers, and citizens. Proposals are due by December 15.
Gulf of Maine Habitat Restoration Grants - The Gulf of Maine Council is seeking proposals for coastal habitat restoration projects within the Gulf of Maine watershed. In partnership with the NOAA National Marine Fisheries Service's Community-Based Restoration Program, the Gulf of Maine Council provides grants to further the goal of habitat restoration and to support a strategic approach to marine, coastal, and riverine habitat restoration. For details, see the request for proposals. Optional letters of intent are due by January 15, 2010. Full applications are due by April 2, 2010.
Reminder - These opportunities listed in the last CZ-Mail are still available:
Nonpoint Source and Stormwater Outreach Conference Proceedings - EPA has published the proceedings from the May 2009 Conference for Nonpoint Source and Stormwater Outreach—Achieving Results with Tight Budgets. See the EPA website for the comprehensive proceedings document, along with copies of the conference PowerPoint presentations.
Ocean Acidification Film - The Natural Resources Defense Council has produced the short film, Acid Test: The Global Challenge on Ocean Acidification, to raise awareness about the problem of ocean acidification. Like global warming, ocean acidification is thought to be caused by the increase of carbon dioxide in the earth's atmosphere since the start of the Industrial Revolution.
Clean Water State Revolving Fund Fact Sheet - EPA has released an updated fact sheet (PDF, 3.5 MB) that outlines the process for funding decentralized wastewater projects with Clean Water State Revolving Fund (CWSRF) capital. CWSRF is a low-interest or no-interest funding source for the installation, repair, or upgrade of "decentralized" wastewater systems in small-town, rural, and suburban areas. An additional $4 billion have been provided to CWSRF by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, which is available through September 30, 2010.
Marine Sanctuary Presentations - On November 17, the National Marine Sanctuaries Foundation (NMSF), in conjunction with the National Marine Sanctuary Caucus, hosted a lunch briefing entitled, The Role of National Marine Sanctuaries in Marine Spatial Planning. Presentations are now available on the NMSF website.
Gulf of Maine Times - The Gulf of Maine Times, the newsletter of the Gulf of Maine Council on the Marine Environment, is moving to an online-only format. Beginning with the next issue, the Times will no longer be produced in hard copy. Please sign up to receive notifications about new editions at www.gulfofmaine.org/subscribe.php.
Coastal Services Magazine - The November/December 2009 issue of Coastal Services, a NOAA Coastal Services Center magazine, features articles about LIDAR in Delaware, North Carolina 10 years after Hurricane Floyd, and the use of social media in Louisiana.
Coastal Connections - The December 2009/January 2010 issue of NOAA's Coastal Connections focuses on marine spatial planning and includes other coastal news and notes.
Marine Protected Area Newsletter - The November-December 2009 issue of MPA News features articles on seismic surveys and marine protected areas (MPA), balancing science and conservation in MPAs, and other MPA news and notes.
Massachusetts Great Outdoors Blog - EEA has launched a new blog dedicated to engaging and informing Massachusetts residents and visitors about the Commonwealth's outdoor activities and events, wildlife, state parks, and local agriculture. The Great Outdoors blog will tell you about outdoor activities, wildlife, and local farms, as well as offer suggestions for places to explore, hike, fish, hunt, or go boating around the state. The blog includes posts from staff representing the Departments of Agricultural Resources (DAR), Conservation and Recreation (DCR), and Fish and Game (DFG) who are experts in Massachusetts-grown foods, wildlife biology, wetlands restoration, and outdoor sports and activities.
EPA §319 Database - The public can now access information about nonpoint source (NPS) pollution control projects through EPA's Nonpoint Source Grants Reporting and Tracking System (GRTS), the primary tool for management and oversight of state Nonpoint Source Management Programs under Section 319 of the Clean Water Act. Users can search for projects by a variety of criteria (project type, title, location, target pollutant, etc.) or through use of an interactive map, which enables browsing for project information by watershed. See the GRTS website
EPA's TMDL Website Redesigned - EPA recently revised the Impaired Waters and Total Maximum Daily Loads website to better serve users from federal, state, and local agencies and the general public. Under section 303(d) of the Clean Water Act, states, territories, and authorized tribes are required to develop lists of impaired waters, establish priority rankings, and develop Total Maximum Daily Loads (TMDL) for these waters. A TMDL is a calculation of the maximum amount of a pollutant that a waterbody can receive and still safely meet water quality standards. The redesigned website features an overview of the section 303(d) program activities, highlights new technical resources, and provides easier access to program resources.
Seascape Modeling - The Seascape Modeling website presents the news, results, and opinions of personnel in the Ecosystem Modeling Lab, a joint effort between the University of Maine's School of Marine Sciences and the Gulf of Maine Research Institute. The goal of Seascape Modeling is to provide current information on efforts to understand the link between physical and biological conditions in the ocean.
Reminders - The following comment opportunities posted in the last CZ-Mail are still available:
Winter Walks and Talks in Harwich - This winter, the Harwich Conservation Trust will host several guided walks in Harwich and a series of winter presentations—all open to the public. For details, see the Trust's website.
Ocean Acidification Workshop - On December 12, the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution will hold the professional development workshop Ocean Acidification: What It Is, What We Know, and What It May Mean. The workshop will feature discussions on how ocean water chemistry is changing and how these changes may affect marine life and people, as well as hands-on demonstrations with classroom experiments. To register, contact Kathy Patterson at email@example.com by December 7.
Cape Cod Natural History Conference—Call for Presentations - On April 3, 2010, the MassAudubon Wellfleet Bay Wildlife Sanctuary will hold the 15th Annual Cape Cod Natural History Conference at Cape Cod Community College in West Barnstable. For more information, contact Melissa Lowe at firstname.lastname@example.org. Proposals are due by January 15, 2010.
Science, Policy, and the Environment Conference - On January 20-22, the 10thNational Conference on Science, Policy, and the Environment, The New Green Economy, will be held in Washington, DC. Organized by the National Council for Science and the Environment, the goal of this conference is to develop and advance science-based solutions to achieve a sustainable, new green economy.
Working Waterways and Waterfronts Symposium—Call for Abstracts - On September 27-30, 2010, the Working Waterways and Waterfronts National Symposium on Water will take place in Portland, Maine. The symposium will provide a forum to help communities, organizations, businesses, and individuals address waterfront access challenges by showcasing successful models and tools from around the country. Abstracts are due by January 22, 2010.
Wastewater Conference - On January 24-27, 2010, the New England Water Environment Association (NEWEA) will host the 2010 Annual Conference & Exhibition in Boston. The NEWEA conference is the largest wastewater environment conference held in New England and features a large exhibit area with more than 180 vendors. Technical sessions will focus on industrial waste, collections systems, plant operations, wetlands, government affairs, hazardous waste, and watershed management.
International Marina & Boatyard Conference - On January 27-29, 2010, the International Marina & Boatyard Conference will be held in Tampa, Florida. This three-day conference will feature educational seminars, products demonstrations, and more than 120 exhibitors.
Ocean Sciences Meeting - On February 22-26, 2010, the 2010 Ocean Sciences Meeting will be held in Portland, Oregon and will focus on the development of predictive tools that are based on models and field observations.
Coastal and Estuarine Habitat Restoration—Call for Proposals - On November 13-17, 2010, the 5thNational Conference on Coastal and Estuarine Habitat Restoration, Preparing for Climate Change: Science, Practice, and Policy, will be held in Galveston, Texas. Proposals are due by March 2, 2010.
Reminders - The following calendar items posted in the last CZ-Mail are still to come:
2010 National Wetlands Awards - Nominations are now being sought for the 2010 National Wetlands Awards. Administered by the Environmental Law Institute and supported by a partnership of six federal agencies, this award program honors individuals who have demonstrated extraordinary commitment to the conservation and restoration of our nation's wetlands in six categories: education and outreach; science research; conservation and restoration; landowner stewardship; state, tribal, and local program development; and wetland community leader. Nominations are due by December 15.
Teacher at Sea Program - The NOAA Teacher at Sea Program is accepting applications for the 2010 field season. The program provides a unique learning and teaching environment for teachers, kindergarten through college, aboard NOAA research and survey ships to work under the direction of NOAA scientists and crew. Applications are due by December 31.
Research Experience for Undergraduates - Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences is seeking applications from undergraduate students for the 2010 Research Experience for Undergraduates summer research program, Gulf of Maine and the World Ocean. Eight students will be selected to receive hands-on research experience in marine microbial food webs, ocean biogeochemistry, optical oceanography, remote sensing, sensory biology, climate change, and fisheries oceanography. Applications are due by January 15, 2010.
Marine Policy Fellowships - The NOAA Sea Grant College Program is accepting applications for the 2011 Dean John A. Knauss Marine Policy Fellowship Program. This one-year program provides a unique educational experience to students who have an interest in ocean, coastal, and Great Lakes resources and in the national policy decisions affecting those resources. The program matches highly qualified graduate students with hosts in the legislative and executive branches, or appropriate associations/institutions, located in the area of Washington, DC, for a one year paid fellowship. Applications are due by February 19, 2010.