May 2015

Welcome to CZ-Mail, the monthly electronic newsletter from the Massachusetts Office of Coastal Zone Management (CZM). Each issue 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. To subscribe to CZ-Mail, send a blank email to Also, please feel free to share CZ-Mail with colleagues and friends—and if you have any suggestions for future editions, or would like make a change to your CZ-Mail subscription, please email your request to For daily updates from CZM, please follow us on Twitter.

All links on this web page were current and working on the date of publication.

Joe Costa Receives EPA Environmental Merit Award

On April 22, the New England Office of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) presented its 2015 Environmental Merit Awards. Along with dozens of other awardees, Joe Costa (executive director of the Buzzards Bay National Estuary Program, which is administered by CZM), Tom Borden (program director of the Narragansett Bay Estuary Program), and Heather Radcliffe (project officer for the New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Commission) were recognized for their dedicated and efficient collaboration to launch EPA’s Southeast New England Coastal Watershed Restoration Program. The program’s goal is to facilitate the collaboration of public and private groups to protect, enhance, and restore southeast New England watersheds. Part of a broader EPA effort to address common water quality problems in the region, the program has resulted in the funding of 12 projects at $1.5 million. These projects will reduce nutrient pollution from fertilizers, septic systems, and other sources to both fresh and saltwater systems. For more information, see the EPA Press Release.

MEMA Briefings on Federal Disaster Funding for January Blizzard Impacts

As a result of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts receiving a major disaster declaration due to the severe blizzard on January 26-28, the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency (MEMA) will be conducting nine Applicant Briefings on the availability of federal funding from May 4-8. The assistance was authorized by President Barack Obama after a review of the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) analysis of Governor Charlie Baker’s request for federal assistance. The purpose of the briefings is to explain the application and reimbursement process for receiving federal funds for eligible expenses incurred by state and local governments, as well as eligible nonprofit organizations in Barnstable, Bristol, Dukes, Essex, Middlesex, Nantucket, Norfolk, Plymouth, Suffolk, and Worcester Counties. This major disaster declaration does not apply to individuals, residents, or businesses. Communities are strongly encouraged to send representatives from local emergency management, public works, and finance departments because the briefings will explain the application and reimbursement process in detail. For more information, please visit the MEMA website.

Boundary Review Completed for the Beverly Designated Port Area

On April 6, CZM issued the Designation Decision for the Beverly Harbor Designated Port Area (DPA), concluding the comprehensive DPA boundary review process initiated in April 2014 at the request of the city of Beverly. The decision affirms the findings in CZM’s January 5, 2015, report that determined the Beverly DPA does not meet the suitability requirements for water-dependent industrial use pursuant to 301 CMR 25.00 pdf format of CMR 25.00: Designation of Port Areas
. Consequently, the area will no longer be subject to the DPA requirements of Chapter 91 specific to the protection and promotion of water-dependent industries. For more on the Beverly decision, see the designation decision pdf format of Designation Decision for the Beverly Harbor DPA - 2015
. For more information on DPAs, see CZM’s Port and Harbor Planning Program - Designated Port Areas website.

Northeast Regional Planning Body Hosts Ecosystem Based Management Workshop

On April 8, the Northeast Regional Planning Body (RPB) held a Workshop on Ecosystem Based Management in Durham, New Hampshire, to help establish a framework and context for the regional ocean planning initiative underway. More than 75 people came together to learn more about and discuss the principles, definitions, and frameworks of ecosystem based management (EBM), consider the challenges of EBM at different scales, understand what elements the RPB is already advancing, and explore how EBM might apply within existing authorities. Participants provided a number of specific ideas that the RPB could consider to advance EBM work in their June meeting and in the first regional plan. For more information, see the EBM workshop page on the RPB website.

MassBays Launches New Estuary Viewer

The Massachusetts Bays National Estuary Program (MassBays) Estuary Delineation and Assessment Viewer is now available. Each of the 47 embayments in the MassBays planning area, from the Merrimack River estuary to Provincetown Harbor, are depicted in interactive maps that locate resources—tidal flats/shellfish habitat, shorebird habitat/nesting sites, anadromous fish runs, salt marsh, and eelgrass beds—and stressors—impervious area, stormwater discharge, land use change, population density, 303(d) impairments, fish barriers/impoundments, wastewater discharge, shellfish area classifications, and stream crossings.

Spatial Data for Volume 2 of 2015 Ocean Plan Now in MORIS

The spatial data presented in the Baseline Assessment Five-Year Update in Volume 2 of the 2015 Massachusetts Ocean Management Plan are now available in the Massachusetts Ocean Resource Information System (MORIS), CZM’s online mapping tool. In MORIS, users can interactively view various data layers over different backdrops (aerial photographs, political boundaries, bathymetry, or other data including Google basemaps), create and share maps, and download the data for use in GIS. A stand-alone version of MORIS that contains the data in the ocean plan can be viewed on the MORIS: Massachusetts Ocean Management Plan Data web page.

CZ-Tip - Spring Cleaning the Green Way

From skin and lung irritants in bleach to carcinogens in carpet shampoos to phosphates in detergents that promote excess algae growth in the ocean, cleaning products can impact human health and the environment. During this year’s spring cleaning, why not try making your own earth-and-ocean friendly cleaning products, many using ingredients found in any grocery store? Or if you prefer, commercial cleaning products are available that have been certified as green alternatives. CZ-Tip - Get Your Home Squeaky Green-Clean! provides information and suggestions on earth-friendly cleaning in your home and on your boat.

Grants/Funding/Proposal Opportunities

Massachusetts Bays National Estuary Program Regional Service Providers - The Massachusetts Bays National Estuary Program (MassBays) is seeking proposals for Regional Service Providers (RSPs) to serve each of the five regions of the MassBays planning area: Upper North Shore, Lower North Shore, Metropolitan Boston, South Shore, and Cape Cod. RSPs will support the implementation of Mass Bays’ Comprehensive Conservation and Management Plan (see Public Comment section below). One-year grants of up to $61,000 will be awarded for each region. For more information, to view the Request for Responses (RFR), and download required forms, see the COMMBUYS website. Proposals are due by May 28.

Reminder - These opportunities, listed in the last CZ-Mail, are still available:

  • Buzzards Bay Municipal Grant Funding - The Buzzards Bay National Estuary Program is seeking proposals from eligible Buzzards Bay watershed communities for projects that protect and restore wetlands, wildlife habitat, and water quality and safeguard open spaces in Buzzards Bay and its surrounding watershed. An anticipated total of $40,000 of federal funds is available. For more information and to view the RFR, see the COMMBUYS website. Proposals are due by May 11.
  • §319 Grants - The Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP) is seeking proposals for the §319 Nonpoint Source Pollution Competitive Grants Program to fund comprehensive projects that address nonpoint sources of pollution affecting water quality. To view the RFR, see to the MassDEP website. Proposals are due by June 2.
  • Parks and Conservation Grants - The Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA) Division of Conservation Services is seeking applications for the fiscal year 2015 Parkland Acquisition and Renovations for Communities (PARC), Local Acquisitions for Natural Diversity (LAND), and Conservation Partnership grants. PARC grants help communities acquire parkland, develop new parks, and renovate existing parks. LAND grants provide funds to municipal conservation commissions to purchase conservation land and conservation restrictions. Conservation Partnership grants provide funds to nonprofit organizations for land acquisitions. PARC and LAND grant applications are due by July 15. Conservation Partnership applications are due by July 20.


2015 Boaters’ Guide to Tides and Pumpout Facilities - This wallet-sized pamphlet from the Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries Clean Vessel Act (CVA) program contains information on the locations of pumpout facilities along the Massachusetts coastline and a June-September tide chart. Download a free copy from the CVA website. Limited hardcopies are also available. Email your request and mailing address to Cecil French.

Implementation of the National Ocean Policy - The National Ocean Council has released the first Report on Implementation of the National Ocean Policy, which highlights the progress made since the policy was established by President Obama in 2010. The National Ocean Policy creates a framework for ensuring the long-term health and productivity of marine ecosystems and communities.

Ghost Fishing Report - The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Marine Debris Program, in partnership with the National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science, has published Impact of “Ghost Fishing“ via Derelict Fishing Gear, a report that assesses the current state of science on "ghost fishing" and the derelict fishing gear that causes it. This report also discusses species mortalities and the economic losses to certain fisheries due to ghost fishing mortalities.

Charles River Monitoring Report - The Charles River Watershed Association (CRWA) has released the 2014 Charles River Water Quality Report, which provides a summary of results obtained through CRWA’s Volunteer Monthly Monitoring Program. In this year-round sampling program spanning the full Charles River, more than 80 volunteer citizen scientists monitor 35 sites along the Charles monthly, where they collect water samples, measure depth and temperature, and record river conditions.

WHOI Newsletter - The April 2015 issue of the WHOI newsletter, a Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute (WHOI) monthly e-newsletter, features articles on Fukushima radioactivity along the North American shore, currents and phytoplankton movement, and other ocean science news, research, and events at WHOI.

Ocean GIS Forum Proceedings - The proceedings and videos from the 2014 ESRI Ocean GIS Forum held in November 2014 are now available on the ESRI website. This conference explored how GIS technology is helping people better understand the ocean, sustainably use its resources, and intelligently plan for the future.

The SandBar - The April 2014 issue of The SandBar, a quarterly publication reporting on legal issues affecting the U.S. oceans and coasts by the National Sea Grant College Program, features articles on a U.S. Supreme Court Ruling on fish shredding, a town’s rights to a local beach in Massachusetts, piracy on the high seas, and other ocean- and coastal-related legal issues.

Marine Protected Area Newsletter - The March-April 2015 issue of MPA News features articles on a proposed marine protected area (MPA) in Pitcairn, creating an MPA in the Bahamas, using drones to enforce MPAs, and other MPA news and notes.

Web-Based and Mobile-User Resources

FEMA Application - The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has released an updated version of its smartphone application, which now provides National Weather Service severe weather alerts. This new feature expands the features of the FEMA app, which already allows users to upload and share photos of damage and recovery efforts, access custom emergency safety information, maps of disaster resources, and safety tips, and apply for disaster assistance.

MarineCadastre National Viewer - The National Viewer has been updated to have more functionality and to no longer require Adobe Flash software. The National Viewer is an online tool that is designed to provide authoritative data to meet the needs of the offshore energy and marine planning communities. New features include mobile device access, an improved data search function, data layer order and transparency adjustment, map export to ArcGIS, and map printing with custom legends.

Public Comment

Please note: All official CZM requests for public comment are published in the Public Notices section of the Environmental Monitor, the bi-weekly publication from the Massachusetts Environmental Policy Act (MEPA) office. Available opportunities for public comment from other agencies and organizations are provided below.

MassBays Management Plan - MassBays is seeking public comment on the public review draft of its Comprehensive Conservation and Management Plan (CCMP), developed in accordance with the Clean Water Act, Section 320. The goals, strategies, actions, and implementation timelines articulated in the final CCMP will guide MassBays’ contribution to and support of a region-wide, multi-jurisdictional effort to improve conditions and monitoring in Massachusetts Bay and Cape Cod Bay. Submit comments to Pam DiBona at by May 29.

Job Postings

AmeriCorps Cape Cod - AmeriCorps Cape Cod is seeking applications for 32 open positions for 2015-2016. AmeriCorps is a federally funded national service organization that addresses critical needs in communities across the country. AmeriCorps Cape Cod members partner with various organizations to conserve, protect, and restore the ecosystems of Cape Cod. Projects include habitat restoration, water quality monitoring, invasive species removal, trail building and maintenance, and shellfish propagation. Members receive a stipend, free housing, skills training, health insurance, a travel allowance, and an educational award of $5,730 after successful completion of the program. Applications are due by May 8.

Research Internship - The Waquoit Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve in Falmouth is seeking applications for a research intern with a background in biology, chemistry, or environmental science. The candidate should be willing and able to help conduct field and laboratory work including analysis of local water samples, collect continuous water quality measurements using automatic data loggers in the field, monitor salt marsh elevation and vegetation to track climate change impacts, and manage biomonitoring datasets and conduct preliminary analyses. To apply, email a resume and cover letter to Jordan Mora at


Wetlands Workshops - In May, the MassDEP Southeast Region will hold several Spring 2015 Circuit Rider Workshops. Session topics include wetland buffer zone rules, wetlands procedures and paperwork, stormwater management, and others. Dates and locations are posted on the MassDEP website. Registration is required for all workshops. To register, email Christine Odiaga at

Wetlands and Rivers Month Calendar - May is Wetlands Month and June is Rivers Month. This online calendar prepared by the Massachusetts Division of Ecological Restoration, lists related events in, on, and along the rivers and wetlands of Massachusetts. These events extend through July 5.

Massachusetts Marine Educators Conference - On May 2, Massachusetts Marine Educators will hold its 39th annual Meeting and Conference, Marine Technology, in the Redfield Building at WHOI. The conference includes presentations by marine scientists and researchers, workshops, and time to network with fellow educators.

River Clean Up Day - On May 2 from 10 a.m. to noon, the North and South River Watershed Association (NSRWA) will hold its 28th Annual River Clean Up Day. Cleanups begin at locations in Marshfield and Scituate. See the NSRWA website for more information.

Ecorestoration Conference - On May 3, Biodiversity for a Livable Climate will hold the Urban and Suburban Carbon Farming to Reverse Global Warming Conference at Harvard University in Cambridge. Conference topics include the state of the climate and how to reverse global warming through eco-restoration; the roles for individuals, businesses, and organizations in cities and suburbs; hands-on efforts that communities can perform; and the role of public officials and government.

Marine Science Educator Workshop - On May 3, the Blue Ocean Society for Marine Conservation will hold the annual Marine Science Educator Workshop in Rye, New Hampshire. Attendees will learn about current initiatives that are protecting marine life and the ocean environment through informative presentations from scientists and educators.

Adopt a Beach Training - On May 5, Salem Sound Coastwatch (SSCW) will hold an Adopt a Beach Training at the Beverly Farms Library in Beverly Farms. SSCW encourages beach lovers to come out to learn how to be an Adopt a Beach volunteer. Once trained, these volunteers, or "beachkeepers," monitor and clean up their favorite beaches. For more information, see the SSCW website.

Climate Resilient Financing - On May 5, Boston Living with Water will host a Climate Resilient Financing Discussion in Boston. Boston Living with Water received more than 350 entries for a design competition for ideas on responding to sea level rise in Boston. To explore how to pay for such options, real estate lawyer Matt Kiefer will facilitate a panel discussion with experts on residential, commercial, and infrastructure preparedness financing.

Green Infrastructure Webcasts - The EPA Green Infrastructure Program Webcast Series features bimonthly webcasts geared toward public officials and practitioners just beginning to implement green infrastructure, as well as those looking to enhance established programs. The next webcast is Getting More Green from Your Stormwater Infrastructure on May 5.

National Adaptation Forum - From May 12-14, the 2nd National Adaptation Forum will be held in St. Louis, Missouri. This biennial conference provides opportunities for professional development through formal trainings, facilitated practitioner presentations, and informal exchange of information.

Water Resources Conference—Call for Abstracts - From November 16-19, the American Water Resources Association will hold the 2015 annual Water Resources Conference in Denver, Colorado. Abstracts are invited for more than 200 topic areas. See the Call for Abstracts, which are due by May 15.

Mystic River Herring Run and Paddle - On May 17, the Mystic River Watershed Association will hold the 19th annual Mystic River Herring Run and Paddle. The day's events include a 5K run/walk race, three paddling races (3, 9, and 12 miles), educational booths, children's activities, and more.

Hurricane Webinar - On May 26, the National Hurricane Center and the NOAA Aircraft Operations Center will present a hurricane webinar for fifth grade students in the Northeast. Experts will provide information on hurricanes, their impacts, and how to be prepared for the upcoming hurricane season, which begins on June 1. Region-specific hurricane science and preparedness details will be discussed with interactive questions to prompt student responses. Schools and classes that want to participate must register in advance at

Massachusetts Hurricane Preparedness Conference - On May 28, the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency will hold the 2015 Massachusetts Hurricane Preparedness Conference in Norwood. The 2015 conference will bring together more than 250 attendees from all disciplines and levels of emergency preparedness and response. Featured guest speakers include experts from the National Weather Service, FEMA, National Hurricane Center, and others presenting information on hurricane preparedness, response, recovery, and mitigation.

BUAR Public Meeting - On May 28 at 1:30 p.m., the Board of Underwater Archaeological Resources (BUAR) will hold its bi-monthly public meeting in the CZM Large Conference Room. The preliminary agenda includes discussion/approval of minutes for march 26 meeting, renewal of six permits, and discussion of permittee, outreach, and research activities. For more information, contact BUAR Director, Victor Mastone, at

Coastal Plants Workshop - On May 29, Coastal Plants 2015, Moving Beyond Just Beachgrass, will be held at WHOI. Workshop topics include increasing plant diversity on dunes and shorelines, plant adaptation to climate change and sea level rise, strategies to minimize the use of inorganic fertilizers, and lessons learned after Hurricane Sandy. For more information, contact Greg Berman at

Wetland Scientist Meeting - From May 31-June 4, the 2015 Society of Wetland Scientists Annual Meeting, Changing Climate, Changing Wetlands, will be held in Providence, Rhode Island. The 2015 conference will examine the role that wetlands play in the global carbon cycle, how they are affected by changing climate, and how they can provide adaptation services.

Floodplain Management Conference - From May 31-June 5, the Association of State Floodplain Managers will hold its 39thannual National Conference, Mitigation on My Mind, in Atlanta, Georgia. Presentations and trainings will focus on the many issues and problems associated with mitigating flood risk including coastal flood risk reduction, inundation mapping, modeling, community resilience, protecting floodplains and fragile natural resources, and more.

Tuesday Tweets - Every other Tuesday through June, the Cape Cod Museum of Natural History will hold Tuesday Tweets, birdwatching walks with Gretchen Moran Towers. Whether experienced or a beginner, bring binoculars, wear appropriate footwear, and come prepared to watch, study, and enjoy birds in their natural habitats.

Birdwatching for Beginners - Through June, the Cape Cod Museum of Natural History will hold Birdwatching for Beginners with Gretchen Moran Towers, who will present basic skills designed to enable bird identification through sight and sound. Each session is followed by an outdoor venture to view birds in their natural habitat. The next session is on May 14.

Aquarium Lecture Series - Through June 4, the New England Aquarium will host the Aquarium Lecture Series, featuring free lectures and films by scientists, environmental writers, photographers, and others. The next lecture on May 5 is Project Puffin: The Improbable Quest to Bring a Beloved Seabird Back to Egg Rock by authors Stephen W. Kress and Derrick Z. Jackson.

Cape Cod Maritime History Symposium - On June 6, the Cape Cod Museum of Natural History will host the 19thannual Cape Cod Maritime History Symposium, with talks entitled Mashpee Indian Whalers, The Sol-e-Mar Disaster Off Martha’s Vineyard, The Art of the Yankee Whale Hunt, and more.

World Oceans Day - World Oceans Day is June 8 and activities celebrating oceans and coasts are held across the world throughout June. The 2015 theme is Healthy Oceans, Healthy Planet. See the World Oceans Day website to view or submit events.

Spectacle Island 5K - On June 14, the Boston Harbor Island Alliance will hold the fifth annual Spectacle Island Flag Day 5K Road Race. Enjoy panoramic views of Boston Harbor and the city from this historic island. Race day festivities feature a 5K Race, half-mile Kids Fun Run, picnic lunch for participants, music, and kids activities.

Climate Change Adaptation Conference - From June 15-17, the American Water Resources Association will hold the 2015 Summer Conference on Climate Change Adaptation in New Orleans, Louisiana.

Environmental Business Council Awards - On June 18, the Environmental Business Council (EBC) will hold the 25th annual Meeting and Awards Celebration in Boston. Each year, EBC recognizes companies, organizations, and individuals for outstanding environmental/energy accomplishments in the promotion of a sustainable, clean environment through this awards celebration.

Buzzards Bay Swim - On June 20, the Buzzards Bay Coalition will host the 2015 Buzzards Bay Swim. Join hundreds of swimmers of all ages and ability levels for a 1.2 mile open-water swim across outer New Bedford Harbor. Funds raised as a swimmer, supporter, or volunteer support the work to protect and restore Buzzards Bay.

Oceanography Conference - From June 22-24, the third International Conference on Oceanography, Ocean Science: Understanding Its Various Processes and Effects, will be held in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Wetland Restoration Workshop - From June 23-24, Mass Audubon’s Long Pasture Wildlife Sanctuary will hold A Hands-On Wetland Restoration Workshop for Professionals in Barnstable. This workshop is designed for individuals interested in learning how to use practical, low cost techniques for restoring naturally appearing and functioning wetlands. Participants will see how wetland projects can be planned on land trust properties and other private conserved and public lands to benefit plants, animals, and people.

Global Ocean Science Education Workshop - From June 26-27, the Global Ocean Science Education Workshop will be held at the University of Rhode Island Graduate School of Oceanography in Narragansett, Rhode Island. The workshop brings together ocean scientists and ocean educators from across the globe and will provide a forum for discussing research and education issues, including the leveraging of international ocean science research in education initiatives and the establishment of new international collaborations.

Boating Safety Course - Through June 27, the Massachusetts Environmental Police will offer Boat Massachusetts, a free, state and nationally approved boating safety course for boaters age 12 and older that concentrates on the equipment and operating guidelines needed to enjoy boating in a safe and responsible way. All graduates ages 12-15 will receive a safety certificate required by state law to allow operation of a motorboat without adult supervision. All graduates ages 16-17 will also be allowed to operate a personal watercraft (jet ski, wave runner, etc.).

Teachers on the Estuary - This summer, the Waquoit Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve (WBNERR) will again offer the research and field-based teacher training program, Teachers on the Estuary. This program is designed to improve teachers' and students' understanding of the environment using local research examples. This year's program will focus on salt marshes and climate change. The program will run from July 13-16, plus a follow-up session in November. For more information, see the WBNERR website.

Cape Cod Field Schools - Through November, Mass Audubon's Wellfleet Bay Wildlife Sanctuary is offering a variety of 2-, 3-, and 4-day field courses for adults that focus on the unique coastal environment and wildlife of Cape Cod. Cape Cod Field Schools emphasize active, outdoor, "in-the-field" experiences and are taught by professional naturalists and scientists.

Walks, Lectures, and Events on Cape Cod - Mass Audubon’s Wellfleet Bay Wildlife Sanctuary and Long Pasture Wildlife Sanctuary in Barnstable offer a variety of educational programs for children and adults, including naturalist-led bird walks and nature adventures for preschoolers. For more information, search the calendar of programs, classes, and activities for Wellfleet Bay and Long Pasture.

Ipswich River Wildlife Programs and Activities - Mass Audubon’s Ipswich River Wildlife Sanctuary provides numerous nature walks, talks, and adventures. See the program catalog for event and schedule information.

Reminders - The following calendar items posted in the last CZ-Mail are still to come:

  • Coastal Sediments Conference - From May 11-15, the 2015 Coastal Sediments Conference, Understanding and Working with Nature, will be held in San Diego, California. This conference provides an international forum for exchanging information among coastal engineers, geologists, oceanographers, and others interested in the physical processes of coastal sediments and morphology changes.
  • Coastal Blue Carbon - From May 12-13, WBNERR will hold Coastal Blue Carbon: New Guidance & Tools for Coastal Managers & Policymakers in Brockton. This event will provide the results of a four-year project at WBNERR that examined the relationship between salt marshes, climate change, and nitrogen pollution. The project used cutting edge science to quantify greenhouse gas emissions and carbon sequestration in coastal wetlands and predict greenhouse gas fluxes across a range of environmental settings. The project also developed new tools and resources to enable coastal managers and policymakers to leverage blue carbon to achieve broader wetlands management, restoration, and conservation goals.
  • Ceres Conference - From May 13-14, the Ceres Conference 2015 will be held San Francisco, California, to bring together those focusing on innovative solutions to build a more sustainable global economy. Ceres is a national network of investors, environmental organizations, and other public interest groups working with companies and investors to address sustainability challenges.
  • Environmental and Water Resources Conference - From May 17-21, the 2015 World Environmental & Water Resources Congress, Floods, Droughts, and Ecosystems: Managing Our Resources Despite Growing Demands and Diminishing Funds, will be held in Austin, Texas. The conference will feature sessions on urban watershed management, groundwater, distribution systems, hydroclimates, desalination, coastal flood risk management, and more.

Other Items of Interest

Coastal and Marine Recreational Characterization Study for the Northeast - The Northeast Regional Planning Body in coordination with Point 97, SeaPlan, and the Surfrider Foundation are seeking participants in the Scuba and Marine Events Surveys for the coastal and ocean areas of New England. The Scuba Survey will collect data about diving areas and the Marine Events Survey will collect data on marine events such as sailing regattas, fishing tournaments, and competitive board and paddle events. Survey responses are due by May 15.

Woods Hole Field Trips - The Zephyr Education Foundation's Ocean Science and Technology Program hosts one-day college, high school, and middle school field trips in Woods Hole. Students participate in a hands-on scientific cruise on Vineyard Sound and are exposed to a sampling of the research activities, technology, facilities, and occupations at the laboratories in Woods Hole.

Ocean Awareness Student Contest - The From the Bow Seat Ocean Awareness Student Contest promotes ocean stewardship among high school students and provides cash prizes for winning essays, art, and advocacy. This year's theme, Our Oceans, Our Plastic, focuses on plastic pollution in the oceans. Entries are due by June 15.

Summer Science School - In July and August, the Waquoit Bay Reserve Foundation sponsors a Summer Science School offering week-long, full- and half-day educational experiences for students entering grades 2-9. For details, a program brochure, and registration information, see the Waquoit Bay Reserve Foundation's Summer Science School web page.

KidSummer - This summer, the Cape Cod Museum of Natural History will offer KidSummer, which provides a range of programs for 3-15 year olds that encourage learning and appreciation of the environment through age-appropriate, STEM-based curriculum and indoor/outdoor activities led by educators/naturalists. Register for weekly sessions (June 29-August 14) through the museum’s FamilyID website.

Coastal Ocean Science Academy - The Northeastern University Marine Science Center in Nahant is accepting applications for the 2015 Coastal Ocean Science Academy, a two-week summer experience held from August 3-14 that is open to students entering grades 9-12. Participants experience firsthand diverse New England coastal habitats and marine resources, engaging in hands-on research and inquiry activities. For 2015, the program will also offer a one-week middle school session from July 20-24.

Mass Audubon Photo Contest - Mass Audubon is holding its 2015 Picture This: Your Great Outdoors photo contest, open to all participants. They welcome striking digital images that highlight the beauty and diversity of Massachusetts wildlife, habitats, people in nature, and Mass Audubon Travel. Entries are due by September 30.