August 2016

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.

Buzzards Bay Municipal Grants Awarded

On August 3, the Buzzards Bay National Estuary Program (BBNEP) announced more than $210,000 to fund seven projects that will help towns in the Buzzards Bay watershed protect important habitat and drinking water resources and provide passage for migratory fish species. All funded projects will assist these municipalities to meet the goals and objectives of BBNEP’s Buzzards Bay Comprehensive Conservation Management Plan. These grants were awarded to Acushnet, Fairhaven, Marion, Mattapoisett, Rochester, and Wareham. Funded projects include efforts to remove an obstruction to a fish passage, permanently protect several tracts of land that serve as important habitat for rare and protected species, and help protect drinking water sources. BBNEP is administered by CZM and provides funding and technical assistance to municipalities and environmental groups in their ongoing efforts to protect and restore water quality and living resources. For more information, see the EEA Press Release.

Seeking Local Cleanup Coordinators for COASTSWEEP 2016

COASTSWEEP, the annual statewide beach cleanup sponsored by CZM, kicks off in September—but now is the time to sign up to be a local cleanup coordinator to make sure your favorite beach, marsh, dive site, or riverbank is free of trash and other marine debris. Thousands of volunteers throughout Massachusetts turn out each year for this event, which is part of an international campaign organized by the Ocean Conservancy in Washington, DC. Participants all over the world collect marine debris and record what they find as part of the international cleanup, and this information is then used to help reduce future marine debris problems. COASTSWEEP cleanups will be scheduled throughout September and October. To get involved, see the COASTSWEEP website or check out COASTSWEEP on Facebook or Twitter.

CZ-Tip: Discover the Uniquely Weird World of Tide Pools this Summer

Predators with razor sharp tongues that drill holes in the shells of their prey and pulpify the innards. Creatures with deadly tentacles that fire paralyzing toxins at the slightest touch. Beings that grow anew from a single arm or consume their own brain. While these sound like descriptions of aliens from a bad science fiction movie, in reality, they are Massachusetts tide pool creatures. Read CZ-Tip - Learn What Lurks in a Massachusetts Tide Pool to learn more about these strange marine organisms and the creative characteristics that allow them to survive this harsh intertidal environment. This tip also provides information on invasive species that are a real threat to marine ecosystems, tide pool destinations in Massachusetts, and tips for staying safe and minimizing impacts while exploring these environments.

Grants/Funding/Proposal Opportunities

National Maritime Heritage Grants - The National Park Service is seeking applications for approximately $1.7 million in National Maritime Heritage Grants for education or preservation projects. Education projects can request $15,000-$50,000 and preservation projects can request $50,000-$200,000. Applications are due by August 5.


Sea Level Rise and Cape Cod Groundwater - The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) has released Potential Effects of Sea-Level Rise on the Depth to Saturated Sediments of the Sagamore and Monomoy Flow Lenses on Cape Cod, Massachusetts, the final report on the results of a study on the mid-Cape’s groundwater system. The study was undertaken to evaluate the effects of future sea level rise on groundwater and to inform development of coastal resilience measures. In coming decades, rising sea level is expected to affect Cape Cod’s groundwater, which supports the underlying aquifer that is the sole source of water to the region’s communities. This aquifer is surrounded on all sides by saltwater bodies and is therefore susceptible to the adverse effects of sea level rise.

Fisheries and Offshore Wind Development - SeaPlan and the offshore wind industry have released Addressing Interactions between Fisheries and Offshore Wind Development: The Block Island Wind Farm, a paper that summarizes strategies that have been effective in minimizing conflict and establishing cooperation between Deepwater Wind and Rhode Island fishing communities. Lessons learned from the Block Island Wind Farm engagement model, mitigation framework, and collaborative research efforts are detailed.

Marine Debris Impacts - The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Marine Debris Program has released the Report on Marine Debris Impacts on Coastal and Benthic Habitats. The report details marine debris impacts to various marine habitats and explores the impacts of marine debris and its effects on coastal and ocean habitats.

Ocean Industries and Marine Planning - The World Ocean Council (WOC) has released Ocean Industries and Marine Planning, a report that provides a multi-sector, industry-oriented review and analysis of the value, challenges, and opportunities of marine spatial planning (MSP) for the ocean business community. The report describes the values that MSP may provide to industry including: identifying and developing data sources on marine ecosystems and their uses; streamlining regulatory/permitting processes; reducing user conflicts and associated litigation; increasing the potential for a balanced management approach; reducing investor uncertainty; and more efficiently using public and private funds.

Natural Hazards Observer - The June 2016 issue of the Natural Hazards Observer, the bimonthly periodical of the Natural Hazards Center in Boulder, Colorado, includes articles on Hurricane Sandy and Staten Island, disaster risk reduction, and other natural hazards news and information.

The Sandbar - The July 2016 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 beach access in California, a hovercraft ban in Alaska, and other ocean- and coastal-related legal issues.

Beneath the Surface - The July 2016 issue of Beneath the Surface, a newsletter from the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI), feature articles on shipwreck artifacts, listening to whales in New York, and other news and updates from WHOI.

Climate Impacts and Outlook Quarterly - The June 2016 edition of the Gulf of Maine Region Climate Impacts and Outlook Quarterly, a quarterly report that incorporates meteorological data generated by NOAA and Environment Canada, is now available. Sea surface temperatures in the Gulf of Maine remained abnormally high, a pattern that began last September. One notable regional impact involves phytoplankton, a keystone in the Gulf's food web. An increase in precipitation over the past few decades washed more dissolved organic matter into rivers and increased river discharge, which carried the matter into the Gulf. This organic matter led to reduced water transparency and decreased productivity of phytoplankton. The effect was most noticeable along Maine's coast. Precipitation and discharges of organic matter are expected to increase over the next century.

Ebb & Flow - The July 2016 issue of Ebb & Flow, the Massachusetts Division of Ecological Restoration eNewsletter, features articles on dam removal, flow issues in the face of an ongoing drought in much of Massachusetts, and other updates, grant opportunities, events, and resource links.

Marine Ecosystems and Management Information Service - The July-August 2016 edition of Marine Ecosystems and Management, the bimonthly information service on marine ecosystem-based management (EBM) from the University of Washington School of Marine Affairs, includes articles on financing multi-sector ocean planning and management, EBM planning, and other notes and news.

Marine Protected Area Newsletter - The June-July 2016 issue of MPA News features articles on indigenous people and the intersection of culture and conservation, MPAs and underwater noise, and other MPA news and notes.

MPA Connections - The July 2016 edition of MPA Connections, the newsletter of NOAA's National Marine Protected Areas Center, features articles on guiding principles for Arctic MPAs, a new National Estuarine Research Reserve in Connecticut, and other MPA news.

Web-Based and Mobile-User Resources

Sea Level Rise Resources - EPAs Climate Ready Estuaries (CRE) Program has added new sea level rise resources to the CRE website. These new resources provide information on how much sea level has risen, how much levels may rise, and what the impacts might be due to sea level rise. CRE works with the National Estuary Programs and the coastal management community to assess climate change vulnerabilities, develop and implement adaptation strategies, and engage and educate stakeholders.

Microplastics Curriculum - Oregon Sea Grant has developed a new middle school science curriculum that explores microplastics in the world’s oceans. Microplastics are particles of plastic (less than five millimeters) that deteriorate from larger plastic pieces, as well as plastic “microbeads” used in personal care products such as face and body scrubs. These particles have emerged as a growing ocean pollution concern due to their size and persistence in the environment. When consumed by crustaceans, shellfish, and other marine animals, the plastics can affect reproduction, growth, and survival. The new 70-page curriculum includes three lessons designed to engage students with the issue by analyzing the problem and investigating possible solutions.

Marine Debris Education: Curriculum and Activities - NOAA’s Marine Debris Program provides free and downloadable marine debris resources. A lesson plan can be built using marine debris videos, activities, and curriculums. Learn how to incorporate these resources into the classroom through the Trash Talk Webinar. For more information on marine debris, see these Trash Talk videos.

Coastal Land Cover Data - NOAA’s Digital Coast Land Cover products can assist planners with water quality issues, wetland analysis, flood mapping, and more. Historical data allow for analysis of land cover changes, and regional reports provide convenient summaries. The latest product that uses NOAA’s land cover data is a story map, which highlights land cover change patterns and population growth rates for urbanized areas along the U.S. coast.


Stellwagen Sanctuary Film Fest - On three Tuesdays in August, the Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary will host the Stellwagen Sanctuary Film Fest. In Scituate. On August 2, the Sanctuary will present Lightning Strikes Twice: The Real Life Sequel to Moby Dick, the story of a Massachusetts whaleship lost on a remote reef, one very unlucky captain (former captain of the Essex), and a team of archaeologists with the discovery of lifetime and Tragedies in the Mist, an introduction to the shipwrecks of Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary in Lake Huron, an area known for extreme weather, treacherous waters and dense fog that has claimed over 200 ships.

Coastal Explorer Van - On August 5, the Cape Cod Museum of Natural History will offer access to the Barnstable 4-H Coastal Explorer Van, a 31-foot, handicapped-accessible motor coach that provides visitors with a unique opportunity to learn about Cape Cod's coastal environment. On board, visitors will find saltwater aquariums with live animals, computer and interactive games, a TV/VCR for viewing marine life videos, microscopes to view marine life, blue shark and dolphin models displaying both external and internal anatomy, and a hands-on exhibit. The van will be parked in the museum parking lot in Brewster from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

Science Stroll - On August 6, the Woods Hole Science Stroll will be held on Water Street in Woods Hole. Twelve organizations will participate showcasing their discoveries with science demos, hands-on activities, crafts for kids, and an up-close view of a working research vessel. Participating organizations include Buzzards Bay Coalition, Marine Biological Laboratory, NOAA Fisheries, NOAA Office of Marine and Aviation Operations, Sea Education Association, U.S. Coast Guard, USGS, Woods Hole Film Festival, Woods Hole Historical Museum, Woods Hole Research Center, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, and Zephyr Marine.

Watershed Block Party - On August 9, the Waquoit Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve will hold the annual Watershed Bock Party. Visitors can see local animals, netting in the bay, mini-science experiments, games, face painting, and crafts.

Woods Hole Summer Film Series - Through September, the Woods Hole Research Center (WHRC) will host the 2016 Summer Film Series at the Harbourton Auditorium in Falmouth. On August 11, WHRC will present Dam Nation, an exploration and rethinking of U.S. dams. A question and answer session will follow the film with WHRC Senior Scientist Max Holmes. The film begins at 5:30 p.m. and refreshments will be served beginning at 5:00 p.m. Due to limited seating, reservations are highly recommended.

Junior Ranger Program - On Thursdays through August, the Waquoit Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve will present the Junior Ranger Program. Children ages 7-12 become scientists as they explore the outdoors, conduct experiments, and use scientific equipment to learn about plants and animals along the coast. The next session on August 11 will be Maters of Migration. Pre-registration is preferred.

Annual Swim & Fin - On August 21, Salem Sound Coastwatch will host the 11th annual Swim & Fin Race for Salem Sound at Forest River Park in Salem. People of all ages and levels may join the event for open-water swimming races of three different distances: 500 meters, 1 mile, and 5K. Proceeds from this event support Salem Sound Coastwatch's work to protect local beaches, streams, salt marshes, and coastal waters.

2017 MACC Environmental Conference—Call for Proposals - The Massachusetts Association of Conservation Commissions (MACC) is now accepting workshop proposals for their 2017 Annual Environmental Conference being held March 4 in Worcester. This year, MACC requests the incorporation of the topic climate change adaptation into workshops where appropriate. With almost 800 attendees, this daylong event includes workshops, trainings, exhibits, and presentation of MACC’s annual Environmental Service Awards. For details on how to submit a proposal, visit the Call for Proposals, which are due by August 26.

Marine Education Programs - Through August, the National Marine Life Center in Buzzards Bay provides Summer Drop-In Programs. Programs include the Little Flippers Club, which features marine animal themed story time and craft projects for children ages 3-8, and Marine Animal Medical Mystery, where children ages 8-14 will learn how to care for a different animal according to the weekly theme.

Walk Inside the Inflatable Whales - Through August, the Cape Cod Museum of Natural History will present several events that allow visitors to walk inside inflatable, life-like whales. Visitors can walk through a 50-foot gray whale and a 44-foot humpback whale. Learn all about the behaviors and habits of these magnificent whales from the inside out.

Mudflat Mania - Through August 29, the Cape Cod Museum of Natural History will hold Mudflat Mania!, twice weekly hikes to Cape Cod Bay to explore the life on and below the Brewster sand flats.

Floodplain Management Conference - From September 6-9, the Flood Management Association will hold the Floodplain Management Annual Conference, Building Community Resilience through Action, in Sacramento, California. The conference provides a forum for floodplain management experts and policy makers to address local, state, and federal regulatory and policy issues pertaining to flood risk management and planning.

International Sustainable Development Conference - From September 21-22, the 2016 International Conference on Sustainable Development will be held in New York City. This conference provides an opportunity to bring together stakeholders from government, academia, the United Nations, international agencies, nonprofits, and grassroots organizers to share practical solutions for more sustainable and inclusive societies.

Massachusetts Soil Conference - On September 23, the Massachusetts Soil Conference, Soils across the Landscape, will be held in Gardner. Understanding soils is critical to conservation and land-use planning that supports sustainable agriculture, forestry, and greener urban, suburban, and rural communities. This one-day conference will focus on soil information resources available through the U.S. Department of Agriculture Soil Survey. The conference will include classroom workshops and field demonstrations for natural resource management and environmental protection professionals, agricultural commission and conservation commission members, farmers, and other land owners and managers.

Climate Change Communication Course - From September 6-October 28, the EECapacity Project at Cornell University will offer the free Climate Change Communication for Environmental Educators Online Course, where participants can learn about recent research on climate change psychology and climate change communication and how concepts from these fields can be incorporated into environmental education (EE) programming. Registration is required and is limited to the first 100 students.

New England Graduate Student Water Symposium - From September 9-11, the New England Graduate Student Water Symposium will be held at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. This conference is for graduate students and research-active undergraduates from universities to come and present work in oral or poster presentations. All presentations will be by undergraduate and graduate students, but all are welcome to attend.

RARGOM Annual Science Meeting—Call for Abstracts - On October 13, the Regional Association for Research on the Gulf of Maine (RARGOM) will hold its Annual Science Meeting, Science for Sustaining the Gulf of Maine's Ecosystems and Coastal Communities, in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. Abstracts are due by mid-September. For more information, email

Cape Cod Bird Club Walks - Through September, the Cape Cod Bird Club will hold free bird watching walks throughout Cape Cod. The next walk will be held at West Dennis Beach on August 6.

Family Field Walks - Through September, the Cape Cod Museum of Natural History will hold Family Field Walks. Naturalists will guide explorations focusing on the various plants, animals, habitats, and other ecological features along the John Wing Trail. These walks are approximately 90 minutes over somewhat challenging terrain. Walks are on Sundays through September 25 and weekdays through September 2.

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.

OneNOAA Science Seminars - The NOAA seminar series website provides listings and details on NOAA science and climate seminars and webinars that are available across the nation and scheduled through the end of 2016.

MACC Education - The Massachusetts Association of Conservation Commissions (MACC) offers a variety of specialized education programs. Visit the MACC workshops page to see an overview of upcoming wetland delineation and soil science courses and shrub identification workshops, along with the soil erosion and sediment-control training program. The MACC online education calendar provides a schedule of programs.

Nature Screen Summer Festival of Films - Through September 2, the Cape Cod Museum of Natural History will host its Nature Screen series with films focusing on science, technology, engineering, art, and math in nature. Join the museum for these compelling, educational, and visually stunning documentaries that inspire appreciation, curiosity, and stewardship of the natural world and its inhabitants.

Birdwatching for Beginners - The Cape Cod Museum of Natural History’s Birdwatching for Beginners with Gretchen Moran Towers presents 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.

Tuesday Tweets - On several Tuesdays into October, the Cape Cod Museum of Natural History will hold Tuesday Tweets, bird watching 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.

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. 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 previously in CZ-Mail are still to come:

  • Hazus Conference—Call for Abstracts - From November 7-9, the ninth annual Hazus User Conference, Achieving Disaster Resilience through Hazus Innovation, will be held in Charleston, South Carolina. Hazus is a nationally applicable, standardized methodology that contains models for estimating potential losses from earthquakes, floods, and hurricanes. Participants are encouraged to submit presentation abstracts on innovative Hazus-related applications such as the use of Hazus in flood, earthquake, or hurricane studies, international applications of Hazus, academic uses, or enhancements of Hazus hazard and exposure inputs. See the Call for Abstracts, which are due by August 15.
  • Annual Antique & Classic Boat Festival - From August 20-21, Brewer Hawthorne Cove Marina in Salem will host the 34th annual Antique & Classic Boat Festival, where vessels of all sizes and shapes will be on display, including 1900s-60s motor yachts, mahogany speedboats, sloops, yawls, schooners, and a 19th century gold-leaf canoe. This celebration of maritime heritage also includes a craft fair, artists, old-time band music, children's activities, the Blessing of the Fleet, and a boat parade.
  • Stormwater Conference - From August 22-25, the StormCon: The North American Surface Water Quality Conference and Exposition will be held in Indianapolis, Indiana. This conference features sessions on green infrastructure, stormwater program management, water-quality monitoring, erosion control, and others. More than 190 exhibitors will be on hand to provide information on current stormwater technology.
  • National Nonpoint Source Monitoring Workshop - From August 23-25, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), in coordination with the Utah Department of Environmental Quality, will hold the 22nd Nonpoint Source Monitoring Workshop, Making a Difference with Data-Driven Management, in Salt Lake City. The workshop focuses on sharing information and improving communication on controlling and tracking nonpoint source pollution at its source and in receiving water bodies.
  • Drinking Water Workshop - From August 23-25, EPA, in collaboration with the Association of State Drinking Water Administrators, will hold the 13th annual Drinking Water Workshop in Cincinnati, Ohio. The workshop will provide in-depth training and information on various solutions and strategies for handling small drinking water system problems and compliance challenges.
  • Low Impact Development Conference - From August 29-31, the International Low Impact Development (LID) Conference will be held in Portland, Maine. The conference will highlight the use of green infrastructure and LID in municipalities, as well as new and existing work and research in the United States and internationally.

Other Items of Interest

Campus RainWorks Challenge - The EPA Office of Water is pleased to announce the 5th annual Campus RainWorks Challenge, a green infrastructure design competition for undergraduate and graduate students. Student teams, working with a faculty advisor, will submit design boards, a project narrative, and a letter of support for a proposed green infrastructure project for their campus. This year, student teams are encouraged to incorporate climate resiliency and consider community engagement in the stormwater management designs. Winning teams will be awarded cash prizes. Registration opens September 1 and entries must be submitted by December 16.

Oceans Project - The nonprofit S’Agulla has launched Oceans, an international online collaborative project to educate students age 12-16 about the different characteristics of the oceans around the world through their own observations, then sharing these observations with students across the globe. The project lasts 11 weeks and enrolment is free. For more information, see the Oceans Trailer or the Oceans website.

Wetlands Challenge - EPA’s National Wetland Condition Assessment Campus Research Challenge gives graduate students the opportunity to use data and innovative research for wetlands assessment and management. EPA will award up to $30,000 including a grand prize of $5,000. Proposals are due by September 30.

Mass Audubon Photo Contest - Mass Audubon is holding its 2016 Picture This: Your Great Outdoors photo contest, which is open to all participants and seeks 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.