March 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 join-env-cz-mail@listserv.state.ma.us. 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 CZ-Mail@state.ma.us. 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.

National Coastal Program Managers Meetings

The managers of the coastal programs from around the United States gathered in Washington, DC, for annual meetings from February 22-26. This national conference serves as an important forum for state coastal programs to coordinate on shared management issues, hear from congressional staff and federal agency leadership on legislative priorities and national matters, and identify opportunities for enhanced collaboration. On February 22-24, the Coastal States Organization hosted its members meeting with agenda items that included congressional priorities, roundtable discussion on the National Coastal Mapping Strategy, and updates from National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Assistant Administrator Russell Callender. On February 25-26, NOAA hosted state managers meetings that opened with keynote remarks by NOAA Administrator and Under Secretary of Commerce Dr. Kathryn Sullivan and included updates on the National Coastal Zone Management Program and panels on regional sediment management, green infrastructure/living shorelines, and ecosystem valuation. Similar annual meetings were also held for the National Estuary Program and National Estuarine Research Reserve managers.

Buzzards Bay NEP Launches Stormwater Website

In February 2016, the Buzzards Bay National Estuary Program (NEP) launched a new website, stormwater.buzzardsbay.org. The purpose of the website is to support the activities of the Buzzards Bay Stormwater Collaborative, which consists of five towns (Dartmouth, Acushnet, Fairhaven, Mattapoisett, and Wareham) that are working with the Buzzards Bay Action Committee (BBAC) and the Buzzards Bay NEP to map stormwater networks and monitor stormwater discharges that are contributing to shellfish bed closures and other pollution-caused impairments. This work began in the fall of 2015 when the BBAC received a $200,000 Healthy Communities Grant from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The Buzzards Bay NEP, which is partnering with the BBAC on the grant, has hired a new staff member to support the municipal effort. The BBAC will be hiring a stormwater specialist and interns to collect dry and wet weather stormwater samples. This work will also support municipal efforts to meet the goals of their municipal separate storm sewer systems (MS4) stormwater management plans.

CZ-Tip - Gear Up to Help Reduce, Remove, and Recover Lost Lobster Pots

In Massachusetts, the American lobster supports a major fishery vital to the local economy, tourism, and even world lobster supply. Because the pots and gear used to catch lobsters can become lost, abandoned, or damaged and inadvertently impact marine life, the lobster industry, resource managers, and even private companies are taking steps to prevent this problem and purge lost gear from the oceans and shores. Read CZ-Tip - Learn about Lobsters, Lost Gear, and Local Efforts to Prevent Marine Debris to discover more about what is being done and what you can do to help.

Grants/Funding/Proposal Opportunities

319 Nonpoint Source Competitive Grants Pre-RFR Meetings - On March 9 and 15, the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP) will hold two meetings to field questions and discuss the upcoming Request for Responses (RFR) for the next grant round for the §319 Nonpoint Source Competitive Grants. Potential applicants are strongly encouraged to attend these pre-RFR sessions to be held at the MassDEP offices in Worcester. For more information on the grants, contact MassDEP’s §319 coordinator, Jane Peirce, at jane.peirce@state.ma.us. For details about the program and past §319 projects, see the MassDEP website.

Water Quality Management Planning Program Grants - MassDEP is seeking proposals for the Fiscal Year 2016 Federal §604(b) Water Quality Management Planning Program Grants to fund nonpoint source assessment activities that support MassDEP's assessment efforts. Project applications are due by March 25.

Habitat Restoration Grants - NOAA’s Community-based Restoration Program is seeking proposals for 2016 Coastal and Marine Habitat Restoration Grants. These grants will support fish habitat restoration projects that use an ecosystem-based approach to foster species recovery, increase fish populations, and contribute to ecosystem and community resilience. NOAA anticipates up to $9 million will be available under this grant round. Proposals are due by April 6.

Sounds Conservancy Grants - The Sounds Conservancy Grants Program is dedicated to supporting the conservation and restoration of the sounds of Long Island, Fishers Island, Block Island, Rhode Island, Martha's Vineyard, and Nantucket and their adjacent coastlines in Connecticut, Massachusetts, New York, and Rhode Island. The program encourages and supports projects that lead to improved marine and coastal resource management with funding up to $2,500 available to university, college, and high school students, private individuals, and nonprofit organizations. Applications must be postmarked by May 1.

FEMA Hazard Mitigation Grants - The Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency (MEMA) and the Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) are inviting communities, state agencies, and tribal governments and territories to submit applications for the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Pre-Disaster Mitigation (PDM) Grant Program and the Flood Mitigation Assistance (FMA) Program. These grants assist applicants with hazard mitigation planning and the implementation of hazard mitigation projects to reduce or eliminate the loss of life and property due to natural hazards. To explain applicant eligibility requirements, the types of projects that are eligible, and the non-federal cost-share, DCR and MEMA will hold several briefings in March and April for potential applicants. CZM strongly encourages all potential applicants to attend one of these sessions. For complete grant details, see the PDM and FMA pages on the MEMA website. Applications for PDM and FMA grants are due by May 25.

Reminders - This opportunity, listed in the last CZ-Mail, is still available:

  • Nantucket Biodiversity Initiative Research Grants - The Nantucket Biodiversity Initiative (NBI) is seeking proposals for NBI Research Grants to conduct research that expands knowledge of understudied taxonomic groups and the overall biodiversity of Nantucket, Tuckernuck, and/or Muskeget Islands. The mission of the NBI is to conserve the native biodiversity of Nantucket through collaborative research, monitoring, and education. Proposals are due by March 15.

Products/Publications

2016 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 at cecil.french@state.ma.us.

Sound Waves - The December 2015/January 2016 issue of Sound Waves, the newsletter from U.S. Geological Survey, features articles on the offshore Queen Charlotte-Fairweather Fault System in southeastern Alaska, coastal bluff erosion on Alaska’s North Slope, and other coastal and marine research news.

Marine Ecosystems and Management Information Service - The February 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 information on marketing conservation, using decision support tools for coastal management, and other notes and news.

Web-Based and Mobile-User Resources

Climate Change Impacts on Water Resources Training - EPA has released Understanding Climate Change Impacts on Water Resources, an online training module developed for water resource professionals to provide information on climate change and its potential impacts to water resources.

Resilience and Adaptation in New England - EPA has released Resilience and Adaptation in New England (RAINE), an online database that provides links, documents, and information on how more than 100 New England communities are taking action to adapt to climate change.

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.

Proposed Revisions to CZM’s DPA and MHP regulations, and MassDEP’s Waterways Regulations - CZM and MassDEP are proposing related revisions to 301 CMR 23.00 - Review and Approval of Municipal Harbor Plans, 301 CMR 25.00 - Designation of Port Areas, and 310 CMR 9.00 - Chapter 91 Waterways Regulations. The purpose of these revisions is to provide greater flexibility to municipalities and businesses by (1) allowing for new and expanded economic development opportunities while ensuring the protection of current and future marine industrial opportunities in selected areas within DPAs and (2) providing increased flexibility, greater clarity and predictability for the licensure of prospective activities and uses on the ground floors of non-water dependent buildings (Facilities of Public Accommodation). CZM and MassDEP expect to jointly publish a notice of the public comment period and the proposed changes in the Massachusetts Register on March 11, 2016, and hold public hearings in early April. Notice of the public comment will also be provided in the Environment Monitor, on the CZM and MassDEP websites, and in the April CZ-Mail. The proposed regulatory amendments are available on the MassDEP website.

Public Review of the Designation of the First Underwater Archaeological Preserve off the Massachusetts Coast - At its public meeting on January 28, the Board of Underwater Archaeological Resources voted to designate the White Squall site as the first Underwater Archaeological Preserve in Massachusetts waters. Under Massachusetts General Law, the Board can designate underwater archaeological sites of substantial historical and/or archaeological value as Underwater Archaeological Preserves. The shipwreck site of the White Squall, a bark-rigged sailing craft made of iron built in 1864 and lost in 1867, is located in the Atlantic Ocean off Cahoons Hollow, Wellfleet, and adjacent to the Cape Cod National Seashore. See the White Squall nomination form for additional details. Under the Board’s procedures for nominating and approving Underwater Archaeological Preserves pdf format of buar-uap.pdf
, a 90-day public review process began on January 29. The Board has scheduled a public meeting on Thursday, March 31, at 10:30 a.m., to allow for public testimony on the nomination. Those wishing to provide verbal and written testimony are encouraged to attend. Written comments may also be submitted by email to victor.mastone@state.ma.us or in writing to the Board of Underwater Archaeological Resources, 251 Causeway Street, Suite 800, Boston, MA 02114. Written comments will be accepted through the close of business on Friday, April 29. After reviewing public comments, the Board will take its public vote on the designation approval at its regularly scheduled meeting on May 26.

Job Postings

Stormwater Specialist - The Buzzards Bay Action Committee is seeking applicants for Stormwater Specialist to work with five Buzzards Bay municipal public works departments to implement a program to monitor stormwater discharges and map stormwater collection systems contributing to those discharges. The objective is to help municipalities identify potential illicit connections and to establish priorities for the treatment of stormwater contributing to shellfish bed, swimming beach closures, and other impairments. Applications are due by March 4.

NEIWPCC Summer Interns - The New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Commission (NEIWPCC) is seeking applications for two summer internships. The Water Resource Protection Intern will assist with the water resource protection division staff with a variety of ongoing programmatic and technical programs and projects. Applications are due by March 25. The Youth and the Environment Coordinator will manage the EPA-funded Youth in the Environment Program and other NEIWPCC wastewater division projects. Applications are due by April 1. For more information, see the NEIWPCC website.

Cape Cod Internships - The Association to Preserve Cape Cod (APCC) is seeking internship applications for three summer 2016 positions. APCC is a non-profit, regional environmental organization whose mission is to protect the natural resources of Cape Cod. For details, see the APCC website. Applications are due by March 31.

Coastal Marine Ecology Summer Internships - The Coastal Systems Group of the University of Massachusetts (UMass) Dartmouth School of Marine Science is seeking applicants for summer internships in coastal marine ecology. Students accepted into this competitive 10-12 week program will participate in both field data collection and laboratory analyses. Research areas include estuarine water quality monitoring, nutrient cycling, and wetlands ecology. Applications are due by April 1.

Calendar

Marine Science Lectures - In 2016, the Northeastern University Marine Science Center is continuing its series of marine science lectures, which are scheduled through April. On March 3, Dr. Kevin Friedland of the NOAA Northeast Fisheries Science Center will speak. Lectures are free and open to the public. Check the Northeastern website for lecture times and locations.

National Marine Monument Panel Discussion - On March 3, Maritime Gloucester will present MG Talks: A National Marine Monument for New England?, which is a panel discussion on the effort to designate Cashes Ledge Closed Area and the New England Coral Canyons and Seamounts as the first Marine National Monument in the Atlantic Ocean. The panel will include Vito Giacalone, Volunteer Chair of Governmental Affairs, Northeast Seafood Coalition; Peter Shelley, Senior Counsel, Conservation Law Foundation Massachusetts; and moderator, Sean Horgan, Gloucester Daily Times.

MACC Conference - On March 5, the Massachusetts Association of Conservation Commissions (MACC) will hold the 2016 MACC Annual Environmental Conference in Worcester. Join more than 1,000 conservation commissioners, local officials, state and federal officials, consultants, and attorneys for the largest regular environmental conference in New England. CZM will be presenting workshops on regulating activities in Land Subject to Coastal Storm Flowage, how to interpret FEMA Flood Insurance Rate Maps and studies, and the StormSmart Properties Fact Sheets.

Saturday Science - Through May, the Cape Cod Museum of Natural History in Brewster will host monthly sessions of Saturday Science, a hands-on look at scientific concepts through experiments for kids. On March 5, the Museum will hold Weather Wonders for kids ages 7-11 to learn about wind.

Professional Development Workshop for Teachers about Whales - From March 5-6, the New Bedford Whaling Museum will present a professional development workshop, Schooling with Whales, which will provide educators with a variety of methods to use topics related to whales, dolphins, and porpoises to teach science, math, geography, and history concepts. The workshop is geared toward teachers of grades 3-6. For registration details, see the museum website.

Field Guide Training Program - Starting March 8, the Cape Cod Museum of Natural History will hold its annual 2016 Field Guide Training. This year's course will consist of six Tuesdays, March 8-April 12. Field guides are trained to guide school groups in the spring and fall and lead tourists during the summer.

MEES Conference - On March 9, the Massachusetts Environmental Education Society (MEES) will hold its 2016 Conference, The Language of Climate Change, at the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester. The day will feature researchers, influential leaders, program models, and active voices from within and outside of the environmental education field. Participants will tackle the problem of how to bring about a behavioral shift when teaching, talking, or communicating climate change science. The focus will be specifically on communicating to a K-12 and college audience.

Coastal Construction Workshops - On March 9 and March 31, the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency, Department of Conservation and Recreation, MassDEP, Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), and CZM will co-sponsor a pair of one-day workshops on important state codes, regulations, and best practices for building and retrofitting homes and other buildings in coastal areas. All participants must register through the MEMA Training website for either the Plymouth workshop on March 9 or Gloucester workshop on March 31. (Please note: It is not necessary to enter the last four digits of your Social Security Number as part of the registration process. Enter 9999 or any four digits.)

Goldenrod Foundation Speaker Series - Through April, the Goldenrod Foundation will hold the Making Waves in Coastal Conservation Speaker Series at Brewster Hall in Plymouth. On March 12, Glorianna Davenport will present Living Observatory at Tidmarsh Farms: Documenting a Restoration in Progress. All talks are free and open to the public.

Digging into the Past - On March 13, the Cape Cod Museum of Natural History, as part of its Digging into the Past lecture series, will present Cape Cod Collected & Cape Odd by author Jack Sheedy. Cape Cod Collected is a compilation of previously published tales covering sea captains, shipwrecks, lighthouses, enterprising landlubbers, heroes, heroines, and odd characters. Cape Odd is a collection of unusual and overlooked stories about Cape Cod, touching on earthquakes, waterspouts, mermaids, shark attacks, shipwrecks, and more.

Shipwrecks Lecture - On March 14 at 7:00 p.m., the Board of Underwater Archaeological Resources (BUAR) Director, Victor Mastone, will present Shipwrecks around Massachusetts as part of Lowell’s Boat Shop Winter Speakers Series at Michael’s Harborside in Newburyport.

Living on the Ocean's Edge - Beginning on March 16, the Eldredge Library in Chatham will hold the 2016 Learning Series: Living on the Ocean’s Edge, a four-week course on how to adapt for better resiliency for those living on the coast. This course will feature a team of experts to discuss natural processes and the human-related effects of coastal living.

Birdwatching for Beginners - On March 17, 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. This session is followed by an outdoor venture to view birds in their natural habitat.

Salem Sound Coastwatch Symposium - From March 18-19, Salem Sound Coastwatch will hold the Salem Sound Coastwatch 25th Anniversary Symposium: Finding Solutions to Our Coastal Challenges. The March 18 session at Endicott College in Beverly will focus on coastal resiliency case studies and review past and future dredging projects with an eye toward mitigation solutions. Dr. Ellen Douglas, Associate Professor of Hydrology at UMass Boston, will be the keynote speaker. The March 19 session at Salem State University in Salem will focus on protecting habitats through water quality improvements and biological monitoring leading to action. Salem Mayor Kimberly Driscoll will be the keynote speaker. Participants can attend one or both sessions.

Volunteer Herring Count Training - On March 19, Three Bays Preservation will hold the 2016 Volunteer Herring Count Training Meeting in Marston Mills. Volunteers willing to help out with the 2016 herring count are encouraged to attend.

National Hurricane Conference - From March 21-24, the 2016 National Hurricane Conference will be held in Orlando, Florida. The primary goal of this conference is to improve hurricane preparedness, response, recovery, and mitigation to save lives and property in the United States and the tropical islands of the Caribbean and Pacific. In addition, the conference serves as a national forum for federal, state, and local officials to exchange ideas and recommend new policies to improve emergency management.

Massachusetts Water Forum - On March 22, the Foundation for a Green Future, Charles River Watershed Association, and other partner will hold the 4th annual Massachusetts Water Forum, Water on My Mind: The Water Energy Nexus, in Boston. The forum will explore innovative ways to manage water as Massachusetts experiences the impacts of a changing climate. This program is tailored to water, energy, and design professionals as well as community and government leaders. The forum is free and open to the public and advanced registration is required.

Science Before Supper Talks - Through March, the Marine Biological Laboratory (MBL) Associates will hold Science Before Supper Talks at the Falmouth Public Library. On March 24, MBL associate scientist Jennifer Morgan will present Lessons from the Lamprey on Spinal Cord Regeneration.

Grant Writing Workshops - In March and April, the Massachusetts Bays National Estuary Program and MassDEP have teamed up with Bay State Roads to present Proposals for Cleaner Water: A Grant Writing Workshop for municipal and nonprofit staff. The Commonwealth of Massachusetts provides multiple opportunities to apply for funds to help with water resource management. These one-day workshops will provide some fundamental strategies for developing competitive proposals to bring new money to local projects. Registration is required. The session on March 30 in Haverhill is filling up quickly. If you miss these sessions, email cschaedig@ecs.umass.edu to be placed on a notification list for future, similar professional development opportunities.

BUAR Public Meeting - On March 31 at 1:30 p.m., Board of Underwater Archaeological Resources will hold its bi-monthly public meeting in the CZM Large Conference Room. The preliminary agenda includes discussion/approval of minutes for the January 28 meeting, renewal of permits, permit extensions, and discussion of permittee, outreach, and research activities. Please note: The public meeting to allow for public testimony on the designation of the White Squall shipwreck site off Wellfleet as an underwater archaeological preserve will be held before this meeting (see Public Comment section above). For more information, contact BUAR Director, Victor Mastone, at victor.mastone@state.ma.us.

Northeast Fish and Wildlife Conference - From April 3-5, the 72nd annual Northeast Fish & Wildlife Conference will be held in Annapolis, Maryland. This conference attracts more than 500 natural resources professionals in the fields of wildlife biology, fisheries and fisheries management, information and education, and law enforcement. The event provides opportunities for education, discussion, and exchange of ideas with more than 50 workshop sessions, keynote speakers, poster displays, and social networking events.

Green Infrastructure Summit - On April 6, North Carolina State University will hold the 2016 Green Infrastructure Summit in Raleigh, North Carolina. This conference will feature presenters on a wide range of green stormwater infrastructure topics.

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 Greening Your Backyard: Water Efficiency and Conservation for Homeowners on April 12.

Watershed and Stormwater Conference - On April 12, the Center for Watershed Protection will hold the 2016 National Watershed and Stormwater Conference in multiple locations across the United States and as a live webcast. This conference will combine in-person discussions with online participation that concurrently addresses local and national watershed issues and tools. Major conference topics include pollution prevention and post-construction stormwater management and will feature case studies, special regional considerations, and recent research from experts around the country highlighting effective tools and innovations.

Nonpoint Source Pollution Conference - From April 20-21, the New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Commission will hold the 27th annual Nonpoint Source Pollution Conference in Hartford, Connecticut. This conference is the premier forum in the Northeast for sharing information and improving communication on nonpoint source pollution issues and projects.

NEERS Spring Meeting - From April 14-16, the New England Estuarine Research Society (NEERS) will hold its Spring 2016 Meeting in York, Maine. Meeting presentations will be on a variety of topics related to estuaries and coastal environments.

Emergency Preparedness Conference - From April 19-21, the Partners in Emergency Preparedness Conference, Experiencing Private-Public Partnerships, will be held in Tacoma, Washington. This conference will present emergency management lessons learned from recent natural disasters. Topics include business continuity and disaster recovery, strategies for creating disaster-ready companies, tourists as vulnerable populations, managing urban floods, crisis communication, early warning systems, and technologies in weather preparedness.

Ceres Conference - From May 4-5, the Ceres Conference 2016: Business not as Usual: Sustainability in an Age of Disruption, will be held in Boston and will focus on how sectors from electric utilities and transportation to food and finance are revamping strategies in response to escalating global sustainability challenges. Ceres is a national network of investors, environmental organizations, and other public interest groups working with companies and investors to address sustainability challenges.

Boating Safety Course - Through May 17, the Massachusetts Environmental Police will offer Boat Massachusetts, a free, state and nationally approved boating safety course for boaters age 12 and older. The course 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 that allows operation of a motorboat without adult supervision, as required by state law. All graduates ages 16-17 will also be allowed to operate a personal watercraft (jet ski, wave runner, etc.).

SMAST Seminar Series - Through May, the UMass Dartmouth School for Marine and Science & Technology (SMAST) will hold the SMAST Spring 2016 Seminar Series. Seminars are free and open to the public.

OneNOAA Science Seminars - See the NOAA seminar series website for listings and details on NOAA science and climate seminars and webinars available across the nation.

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.

Tuesday Tweets - On several Tuesdays through April, 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:

  • Sea Rovers Clinic - From March 4-6, the Boston Sea Rovers will hold the 2016 Sea Rovers Clinic in Danvers. Each year, the clinic is held to increase the awareness and appreciation of the marine environment with a focus on diving. The 2016 Clinic will include more than 20 daytime seminars, workshops, a marine sciences career fair, an international film festival, and a large display of dive equipment and services in New England.
  • Cape Cod Natural History Conference - On March 5, the MassAudubon Wellfleet Bay Wildlife Sanctuary will hold the 21st annual Cape Cod Natural History Conference at Cape Cod Community College in West Barnstable. This full-day conference will feature presenters from environmental organizations across Cape Cod speaking on a variety of natural history topics.
  • Fundamentals of Shellfish Farming - Beginning March 7, the Southeastern Massachusetts Aquaculture Center, Barnstable County Cape Cod Cooperative Extension Marine Program, and Woods Hole Sea Grant will offer an 8-week course on the basics of shellfish aquaculture. For the course description, see the Cape Cod Cooperative Extension Marine Program website, and for more information or to register, email Abigail Archer at aarcher@barnstablecounty.org.
  • Public Policy Forum - On March 9, the Consortium for Ocean Leadership will hold the 2016 Public Policy Forum, Science and Solution for a Resilient Ocean, in Washington, DC. This day-long public meeting offers an opportunity to discuss national issues of importance to the ocean community and features ocean policy discussions with representatives from Congress, federal agencies, industry, and the academic research community.
  • Ecological Landscaping Conference - From March 9-10, the Ecological Landscaping Alliance (ELA) will hold the ELA Conference and Eco-Marketplace, Sustaining the Living Landscape, in Amherst. The 2016 conference will explore topics including building and managing soils, growing and buying local, tree filters for stormwater management, and more.
  • Environmental Industry Summit - From March 9-11, the 2016 Environmental Industry Summit will be held in San Diego, California. This summit brings together professionals from the environmental industry and features networking opportunities, presentations, and panel discussions from environmental industry executives and analysts.
  • High School Marine Science Symposium - The Massachusetts Marine Educators will hold the 2016 High School Marine Science Symposium in Boston on March 9 and Salem on March 16. Join hundreds of high school students and their teachers to learn about research and practices around marine science topics and issues. The event features both keynote speakers in a plenary format as well as hands-on break-out workshops led by scientists, policymakers, graduate students, and others engaged in marine-related careers.
  • Swamp Things - On March 11, the Southern New England Chapter of the Soil and Water Conservation Society will hold its 2016 Winter Conference, Swamp Things: Installation and Restoration of Temporary Wetland Crossings, in Sturbridge. This conference will bring together regional experts in the fields of energy transmission management, wetland crossing construction, and the various levels of environmental regulation to describe how wetland crossings are designed, permitted, constructed, and restored.
  • Local Environmental Action Conference - On March 13, the Mass Climate Action Network and the Toxics Action Center will hold Local Environmental Action 2016 at Northeastern University. This conference will feature workshops on energy efficiency, waste reduction, environmental justice, pipelines in New England, and other topics.
  • Benthic Ecology Meeting - From March 16-19, the 45th annual Benthic Ecology Meeting will be held in Portland, Maine. This meeting is one of the largest scientific meetings for marine biologists in the United States and has historically provided a venue for graduate and undergraduate students to present their work and interact with established researchers in all areas of marine biology and ecology.
  • Environmental Biologist Conference - From March 23-25, the New England Association of Environmental Biologists (NEAEB) will hold its 40th annual meeting in Rockport, Maine. NEAEB 2016 is a three-day conference that provides a forum for presenting current work and research on pressing environmental issues relevant to the region.
  • Great Massachusetts Cleanup—Seeking Coordinators - On April 23, Keep Massachusetts Beautiful will hold the Great Massachusetts Cleanup. Cleanup coordinators are needed to organize litter cleanups in communities across the state. Cleanup dates are flexible. For more information, see the Keep Massachusetts Beautiful website or email info@keepmassbeautiful.org.
  • Coastal Summit—Call for Proposals - From December 10-15, Restore America’s Estuaries and The Coastal Society will present the 2016 Summit Our Coasts, Our Future, Our Choice in New Orleans, Louisiana. The Summit will bring together the coastal restoration and management communities for an integrated discussion to explore issues, solutions, and lessons. See the Call for Proposals, which are due by May 2.

Other Items of Interest

Environmental Education Awards - EEA is now accepting applications for the 2016 Secretary Awards for Excellence in Energy and Environmental Education. All K-12 Massachusetts schools are eligible for cash awards for outstanding environmental and energy education projects. Winners will be notified in April and invited to attend a formal award ceremony at the State House. To apply, see the EEA website. Applications are due by March 30.

Gulf of Maine Council Award Nominations - The Gulf of Maine Council on the Marine Environment is seeking nominations for its annual Visionary, Longard, Susan Snow-Cotter Leadership, Industry, and Sustainable Communities Awards. Visionary Awards will be presented to two individuals and/or organizations in each state and province bordering the Gulf. The Longard Award will be presented to an outstanding volunteer within the Gulf watershed. The Susan Snow-Cotter Award will recognize a coastal management professional who exemplifies outstanding leadership or exceptional mentoring in the Gulf of Maine watershed. The Industry Award will go to a business that has shown leadership in efforts to improve the well-being of the Gulf of Maine ecosystem. The Sustainable Communities Award will be awarded to a community or group that exemplifies a sustainable environment and economy. Submit nomination forms by March 31 through the Council website.

National Groundwater Awareness Week - March 6-12 is National Groundwater Awareness Week, the National Ground Water Association's effort to highlight the value of this natural resource and promote protection strategies—from proper management of household hazardous substances to septic system maintenance. For more information, check out the National Groundwater Awareness Week website.

2016 Nickerson Fellowship - The Nickerson Conservation Fellowship Committee is soliciting proposals to support scientific research that assists park managers in making informed decisions about the resources of the Cape Cod National Seashore. Proposals will be accepted for research in the broad areas of the natural and social sciences, including terrestrial and aquatic ecosystem processes, biotic and abiotic ecosystem components, cultural and natural resource management, and the political and social implications of resource protection and management. The 2016 fellowship will provide up to $3,000 in funding. For details, including application information, see the fellowship web page. The application deadline is March 7.

Ocean Video Contest - The Consortium for Ocean Leadership’s National Ocean Sciences Bowl (NOSB) in partnership with the National Marine Educators Association (NMEA) is seeking entries for the eighth annual Living on the Ocean Planet Video Contest. The contest will showcase student-developed, original videos that educate the general public about ocean science and marine issues. Students currently enrolled in high school are eligible to submit a 1-3 minute video on this year’s contest theme, Our Changing Ocean: Science for Strong Coastal Communities. Submissions are due by March 18.

Nick Winter Memorial Scholarship Fund - The Association of State Floodplain Managers (ASFPM) and the ASFPM Foundation will grant a $2,500 scholarship for the 2016-2017 academic year to a full-time college junior or senior or graduate student currently enrolled in a field related to floodplain/stormwater management. For details see, the ASFPM website. Applications are due by April 1.

Science Without Borders Challenge - The Khaled bin Sultan Living Oceans Foundation is seeking entries for the 2016 Science without Borders Challenge. Students, ages 11-19, are asked to submit videos (maximum of five minutes) on the theme, Fishing Under the Radar. Entries are due by April 25.

Marine Art Contest - Massachusetts Marine Educators and Stellwagen Bank Marine Sanctuary are seeking entries from students in grades K-12 for the 2016 Marine Art Contest. Submissions should be based on the theme Marine Biodiversity of Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary. Winning entries will become part of a touring exhibition and receive cash prizes. Entries are due by April 29.

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, Making Meaning of Ocean Pollution, focuses on making meaningful connections between ocean health and human activity. Entries are due by June 13.

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 2-12. For details, program brochures, 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 encourages learning and appreciation of the environment through age-appropriate, STEM-based curriculum and indoor/outdoor activities led by educators/naturalists. Registration is available for weekly sessions (June 27-August 12) through the museum’s FamilyID website.