March 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 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.

Draft Coastal Erosion Commission Report Released for Public Comment

On January 7, the Massachusetts Coastal Erosion Commission released its draft report for public comment. The commission was established by the FY 2014 Budget Bill to investigate and document levels and impacts of coastal erosion in the Commonwealth and develop strategies and recommendations to reduce, minimize, or eliminate the magnitude and frequency of coastal erosion and its adverse impacts on property, infrastructure, public safety, and beaches and dunes. On behalf of the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA), CZM led and staffed the commission. Since it convened in March 2014, the commission held five meetings, reviewed the work and findings of similar state- and national-level commissions on coastal shoreline and floodplain management, convened five regional public workshops, and created three working groups. The draft report presents the work, findings, and recommendations of the commission. Volume 1 contains the body of the report and Volume 2 contains the working group technical reports (Science and Technology, Legal and Regulatory, and Erosion Impacts). As noticed in the January 7 and January 21 Environmental Monitor, the report is available for a 90-day public comment period. Five regional public hearings have been scheduled for February and March. The schedule for the remaining four hearings is:

  • South Shore - March 5, 5:00-7:00 p.m. at the Marshfield Senior Center, 230 Webster Street, Marshfield.
  • North Shore - March 9, 5:00-7:00 p.m. at the Ipswich Town Hall 2nd Floor Selectmen’s Meeting Room, 25 Green Street, Ipswich.
  • South Coast - March 19, 5:00-7:00 p.m. at the Buzzards Bay Coalition, Croll Conference Room, 114 Front Street, New Bedford, MA 02740. NOTE: This meeting was rescheduled from February 5.
  • Cape Cod and Islands - March 25, 5:00-7:00 p.m. at the Barnstable Town Hall Hearing Room, 367 Main Street, Hyannis. NOTE: This meeting was rescheduled from February 12.

For more information, see the Coastal Erosion Commission Draft Report web page. Submit comments to erosion-commission@state.ma.us by April 7.

Northeast Regional Ocean Council Winter Meeting

On February 5, CZM joined state and federal agency members and stakeholder partners at the Northeast Regional Ocean Council’s (NROC) winter meeting in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. Agenda items included: updates on progress and work underway for the Northeast regional ocean planning initiative; development of the Integrated Sentinel Monitoring Network for Climate Change in Northeastern Coastal Ecosystems to identify key indicators and sentinel sites around the region to measure changes in marine and estuarine ecosystems; and discussion on regional opportunities for NROC to advance the recommendations of the President’s Task Force on Climate Preparedness and Resilience. For more information on NROC, including the winter meeting briefing packet and the recently updated committee work plans, see northeastoceancouncil.org.

Storm Team Assesses Damage from Second Major Coastal Storm of 2015

On February 15 and 16, twelve members of the Coastal Storm Damage Assessment Team were activated to assess damage from a coastal storm in communities from Salisbury to Cape Ann and from Hull to Plymouth, and in Sandwich and Nantucket. Widespread beach, dune, and bank erosion, as well as overwash of seawalls and low-lying dunes were observed. In Hull, Scituate, Marshfield, and Nantucket, overwash of seawalls resulted in water flowing around homes and flooding of coastal streets and parking areas. All observations and photographs were input into StormReporter, an on-line database that is used by the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency in storm recovery efforts, by the National Weather Service to fine tune forecasting of future events, and others for floodplain management and planning.

CZ-Tip - Search the Seashore for Sunken Ships Exposed by Storm Waves

The next time you walk the beach in search of strange things washed up from this winter's intense storms, keep a watchful eye for half-buried timbers and other artifacts from long-ago shipwrecks. Every year, evidence of archeological finds from under the sea is either washed up or uncovered by winter waves and tides. Given that the Massachusetts Board of Underwater Archaeological Resources estimates that more than 3,000 vessels have wrecked off the Massachusetts coast, there is a true treasure trove of material to be discovered. And though some of these objects are seemingly quite ordinary (e.g., a piece of wood), they should be handled with care—any find has the potential to be an important piece of maritime history. To learn more about the importance of underwater archeological finds, who is responsible for protecting them, and how to safeguard these potential treasures, see CZ-Tip - Uncovering Maritime History at the Shore.

Grants/Funding/Proposal Opportunities

Environmental Education Grants - The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is seeking applications for Environmental Education Local Grants to support locally focused environmental education projects that increase public awareness and knowledge about environmental issues. Applications are due by March 6.

319 Nonpoint Source Competitive Grants Pre-RFR Meetings - On March 10 and 12, 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. Pending new National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permits that will impact the §319 program will be discussed. Potential applicants are strongly encouraged to attend these pre-RFR sessions to be held at the MassDEP offices in Worcester (Note: MassDEP’s Worcester Office has moved to 8 New Bond Street). 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 2015 Federal §604(b) Water Quality Management Planning Program Grants to fund nonpoint source assessment activities that support MassDEP's assessment efforts. For more information, to view the RFR, and download required forms, see the COMMBUYS website. Applications are due by March 27.

Environmental Literacy Grants - The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Office of Education is seeking applications for projects designed to strengthen the public’s and/or K-12 student’s environmental literacy to improve community resilience to extreme weather events and environmental changes. Eligible applicants include educational institutions, including nonprofits, museums, zoos, aquariums, along with state and local governments. Proposed projects should be between two and five years in duration and have a total budget of $250,000 to $500,000 for the complete project. For details, including upcoming informational webinars, see the NOAA website. Applications are due by April 13.

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.

Products/Publications

Updated Coastal Hazards Handbook - Woods Hole Sea Grant has released an updated version of the Massachusetts Homeowner’s Handbook to Prepare for Coastal Hazards. The Second Edition features information on the hazards of coastal living in a changing climate. Developed through a collaboration of CZM, Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency, Federal Emergency Management Agency, Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation, Barnstable County, Woods Hole Sea Grant, and MIT Sea Grant, this handbook provides tools and resources useful in helping communities mitigate coastal impacts.

North Atlantic Coastal Storm and Flood Risk Study - The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has released the North Atlantic Coast Comprehensive Study, a report that details the results of a two-year study to address coastal storm and flood risk to vulnerable populations, property, ecosystems, and infrastructure affected by Hurricane Sandy in the United States North Atlantic region. The goals of the study are to reduce flood risk to vulnerable coastal populations and promote coastal resilient communities to ensure a sustainable and robust coastal landscape system, considering future sea level rise and climate change scenarios. The study area encompassed approximately 31,200 miles of coastline.

Green Infrastructure Financing - EPA has released Getting to Green: Paying for Green Infrastructure, Finance Options and Resources for Local Decision-Makers, which summarizes various funding sources that can be used to support stormwater management programs or to finance individual projects. Each type of funding source is illustrated by several municipal programs and contains a list of additional resources. A comparative matrix is also included, which describes the advantages and disadvantages of the various funding sources. For more information on green infrastructure, see EPA’s Green Infrastructure website.

MassBays Newsletter - The winter 2015 issue of the MassBays Newsletter, a quarterly update of the Massachusetts Bays National Estuary Program (MassBays), announces the MassBays State of the Bays Symposium, features new research on marsh edge erosion on the North Shore, discusses storm impacts on Cape Cod this winter, and gives information about many upcoming spring events and offerings throughout the five MassBays regions.

Ocean Planning & Policy News - The February 2015 issue of Ocean Planning & Policy News, a monthly update from Ocean Conservancy, features information on the 2015 Massachusetts Ocean Management Plan, marine planning and ocean conservation, and other ocean planning and policy news.

Natural Hazards Observer - The January 2015 issue of the Natural Hazards Observer, the bimonthly periodical of the Natural Hazards Center in Boulder, Colorado, features articles on the evaluation of the post-Sandy resilience design competition, hydraulic fracturing, 10 years after the Indian tsunami, and other natural hazards news and information.

WHOI Newsletter - The February 2015 issue of the WHOI newsletter, a Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute (WHOI) monthly e-newsletter, features articles on biofuels from algae, a smarter undersea robot, and other ocean science news, research, and events at WHOI.

The Sandbar - The January 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 balancing coastal development and the public trust, seafood businesses and property tax, and other ocean- and coastal-related legal issues.

Newswave - The Fall 2014/Winter 2015 issue of NEWSWAVE, the quarterly newsletter on ocean, coastal, and Great Lakes activities from the U.S. Department of the Interior (DOI), features articles on the DOI Climate Change Adaptation Plan, DOI’s ocean policy work, and other ocean and coastal news

Marine Protected Areas Connections - The February 2015 issue of Marine Protected Areas CONNECTIONS, news from the National Marine Protected Areas Center, features articles on a new cultural resources toolkit for marine protected area (MPA) managers, a new research reserve in Hawaii, and other MPA news.

Marine Protected Area Newsletter - The January-February 2015 issue of MPA News features a discussion of the World Parks Congress meeting in Sydney, MPAs in Cuba, and other MPA news and notes.

Sound Waves - The November/December 2014 issue of Sound Waves, the newsletter from U.S. Geological Survey, features articles on landslide studies along the U.S. Atlantic Ocean Margin, seamounts in the Caribbean, and other coastal and marine research news.

Web-Based and Mobile-User Resources

Storm Surge Tools - NOAA’s Digital Coast provides a suite of storm surge and flood prediction resources. The Inundation Toolkit and new Storm Surge Fast Draw video can help local officials prepare for coastal flooding issues. In addition, the Coastal Flood Exposure Mapper and Sea Level Rise Viewer can help users see a community’s flooding potential, while the green infrastructure training and related online video provide details on green infrastructure concepts and practices.

Climate Adjustment Tool - EPA has developed a Climate Adjustment Tool for its Stormwater Management Model, a downloadable online stormwater simulation model. This new tool allows engineers and planners to evaluate the performance of water infrastructure while considering future climate change projections, such as more frequent high-intensity storms and changes in evaporation rates of seasonal precipitation, to determine the benefits of resiliency decisions to reduce local economic burden and protect communities. The Climate Adjustment Tool is part of the Virtual Climate Resilience Toolkit, which can help users make planning, analysis, and design decisions that will guard against the impacts of climate change.

Wetlands Mapping Tool - The Association of State Wetland Managers in collaboration with Virginia Tech’s Conservation Management Institute and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s Northeast Region have created Wetlands One-Stop Mapping to provide easy online access to geospatial data on wetlands and soils produced by federal and state agencies.

EnviroAtlas - EPA’s EnviroAtlas is a collection of interactive tools and resources that allows users to explore the many benefits people receive from nature, often referred to as ecosystem services. Using EnviroAtlas, users can access, view, and analyze diverse information to better understand how various decisions can affect an array of ecological and human health outcomes.

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.

Coastal Erosion Commission Report - The Massachusetts Coastal Erosion Commission is seeking public comment on its draft report, released on January 7. The commission has scheduled five regional public hearings to solicit input on the draft report. The remaining dates and locations are:

  • South Shore - March 5, 5:00-7:00 p.m. at the Marshfield Senior Center, 230 Webster Street, Marshfield.
  • North Shore - March 9, 5:00-7:00 p.m. at the Ipswich Town Hall 2nd Floor Selectmen’s Meeting Room, 25 Green Street, Ipswich.
  • South Coast - March 19, 5:00-7:00 p.m. at the Buzzards Bay Coalition, Croll Conference Room, 114 Front Street, New Bedford, MA 02740. NOTE: This meeting was rescheduled from February 5.
  • Cape Cod and Islands - March 25, 5:00-7:00 p.m. at the Barnstable Town Hall Hearing Room, 367 Main Street, Hyannis. NOTE: This meeting was rescheduled from February 12.

For more information see the Coastal Erosion Commission Draft Report web page. Submit comments to erosion-commission@state.ma.us by April 7.

Job Postings

Cape Cod Internships - The Association to Preserve Cape Cod (APCC) is seeking three interns for the summer of 2015. Internships are available in coastal ecology education, biology, and mapping Cape Cod’s natural plant communities. 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 13.

Marine Education Internships - The Center for Coastal Studies (CSC) in Provincetown is seeking applications for Marine Education Internships to assist with CSC’s environmental education programs. Interns will assist with staffing the center’s informational and sales kiosk and exhibit space, designing and delivering presentations, answering questions about CSC, marine mammals, and ocean conservation issues, and other general duties. Also, each intern will take on a project for the duration of the internship. Internships are open to college students and graduates, and high school students may also be considered. Applications are due by April 3.

Calendar

Native Plants at Naturescape Gallery - Through March, the Cape Cod Museum of Natural History’s Naturescape Gallery will present Native Plants by Dr. Hans Rilling, Cape Cod nature photographer, conservationist, and biochemist. Rilling has served on the boards of two Audubon Society chapters as president, vice-president, and treasurer.

NEERS Spring Meeting—Call for Abstracts - From April 16-18, the New England Estuarine Research Society (NEERS) in coordination with the Coastal Society will hold its Spring 2015 Meeting in Bristol, Rhode Island. Meeting presentations will be on a variety of topics related to estuaries and coastal environments. See the Call for Abstracts, which are due by March 5.

Water Watch Lecture Series - On Wednesdays through March 18, the North and South Rivers Watershed Association will hold the Water Watch Lecture Series at the South Shore Natural Science Center. On March 4 at 7:00 p.m., Dr. Gordon Waring and Stephanie Wood, NOAA Fisheries Science Center, will present Rising Seal Populations. Lectures are free and open to the public.

Family Programs in Marion - On March 6, the Marion Natural History Museum will run an evening program for families. Dr. Tom Burns, shark photographer, will present Beyond the White Shark - Sharks of New England.

Rachel Carson Documentary - On March 7, the Parker River Film Festival will present The Power of One Voice: A 50-Year Perspective on the Life of Rachel Carson, a new documentary film examining the life of Rachel Carson and the profound implications of her environmental work. The film will be shown at 7:00 p.m. at the Parker River National Wildlife Refuge Headquarters in Newburyport.

Professional Development Workshop on Whales - From March 7-8, 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 whales, dolphins, and porpoises to teach science, math, geography, and history concepts. The workshop is geared toward teachers in grades 3-6. For registration details, see the museum website.

Marine Science Lectures - In 2015, the Northeastern University Marine Science Center will host a series of marine science lectures through April. On March 10, Dr. Justin Ries, Associate Professor of Marine and Environmental Sciences at Northeastern University, will present Impact of Ocean Acidification on Marine Shell-Builders. These lectures, which are free and open to the public, will be held at the Murphy Bunker Classroom at the Marine Science Center in Nahant. Light refreshments will be served prior to each lecture.

Field Guide Training Program - Starting March 10, the Cape Cod Museum of Natural History will hold its annual 2015 Field Guide Training. This year's course will consist of six Tuesdays, March 10-April 14. Field guides are trained to guide school groups in the spring and fall and lead tourists during the summer.

MEES Conference - On March 11, the Massachusetts Environmental Education Society (MEES) will hold its 2015 Conference, Our Common Wealth: Environmental Education Is for Everyone, at the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester. Join fellow environmental educators and others who are dedicated to providing experiences that educate, excite, and commit all generations to conserving the environment and becoming responsible stewards.

Cape Cod Preparedness Workshops - In March, the Waquoit Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve will hold two Sea Level Rise, Storms and Cape Cod workshops focused on reducing and improving regional preparedness. On March 12, the Developing Planning and Decision-Support Tools to Meet Local Needs workshop will focus on examining existing web-based mapping and visualization tools that can inform local planning and emergency response efforts and ways to enhance the utility of these tools. On March 19, the Engaging the Community in Planning: How Can It Be Done and What Has Been Proven to Work? workshop will present a variety of successful strategies where towns and organizations were able to make tremendous progress despite challenging beginnings. These full-day workshops will be held at the Waquoit Bay Reserve in East Falmouth.

Cape Cod Natural History Conference - On March 14, the MassAudubon Wellfleet Bay Wildlife Sanctuary will hold the 20th 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 diversity of natural history topics.

Environmental Activist Conference - On March 15, the Massachusetts Climate Action Network and Toxics Action Center will hold Environmental Action 2015, an environmental activist conference at Northeastern University in Boston. Join community leaders, environmental advocates, and activists from across New England for a day of skills training and networking.

High School Marine Science Symposium - On March 18, Massachusetts Marine Educators will hold the High School Marine Science Symposium at Salem State University. Presenters will include experts from Northeastern University, the Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries, Seacoast Science Center, and Massachusetts Bureau of Underwater Archaeology (BUAR). BUAR Director, Victor Mastone, will present a hands-on shipwreck mapping workshop.

Birdwatching for Beginners - In March and April, 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 March 19.

Science on the Street - On March 21, the Cape Cod Museum of Natural History will host Science on the Street, an interactive science festival for families, teachers, and students. Held in collaboration with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Cambridge Science Festival's Science on the Street outreach program, attendees will have fun learning about science, technology, engineering, and math. Topics include: bees, rockets, turtles, bird banding, insects, fish, satellites, space, electricity, archaeology, osprey, whales, sharks, water ecology, mystery plankton, and so much more.

Shellfisheries Conference - From March 22-26, the National Shellfisheries Association will hold its 107th Annual Meeting in Monterey, California. Session topics include commercial fisheries, acidification, shellfish genetics, national and state shellfish initiatives, and more.

Underwater in Salem Sound Lecture Series - Through April, Salem Sound Coastwatch will hold free monthly Underwater in Salem Sound lectures at Marblehead's Abbot Public Library at 7:00 p.m. on the last Wednesday of each month. On March 25, Dr. Sara Grady from the North and South Rivers Watershed Association will present Horseshoe Crabs-The Ancient Blue Blood.

BUAR Public Meeting - On March 27 at 1:30 p.m., BUAR will hold its bi-monthly public meeting in the CZM large conference room. The preliminary agenda includes discussion/approval of minutes for the December 2014 meeting, renewal of seven permits, and three special permit approvals. For more information, contact BUAR Director Victor Mastone at victor.mastone@state.ma.us.

National Hurricane Conference - From March 30-April 2, the 2015 National Hurricane Conference will be held in Austin, Texas. 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.

Emergency Preparedness Conference - From April 14-16, the Partners in Emergency Preparedness Conference 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.

State of the Bays Symposium - On April 15, the MassBays will hold the State of the Bays Symposium in Boston. This one-day symposium will look at the past, present, and future of the Massachusetts Bay and Cape Cod Bay. Panelists will describe conditions and trends in human uses, weather, water quality, habitat, and wildlife. Attendees will explore the potential for connections among research and monitoring programs to inform future monitoring and assessment efforts.

Working Waterfront and Waterways Symposium—Call for Abstracts - From November 16-19, the 2015 National Working Waterfronts & Waterways Symposium will be held in Tampa, Florida. The goal of this triennial symposium is to increase the capacity of saltwater and freshwater coastal communities and stakeholders to make informed decisions, balance diverse uses, ensure access, and plan for the future of working waterfronts. The symposium will feature concurrent sessions, plenary sessions, posters, and a strategic planning meeting. See the Call for Abstracts and Session Proposals, which are due by April 15.

Northeast Fish and Wildlife Conference - From April 19-21, the 71st annual Northeast Fish & Wildlife Conference will be held in Newport, Rhode Island. 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.

Future of Water Conference - On April 24, the Watershed Action Alliance in partnership with Plimoth Plantation will hold the Future of Water in Southeastern Massachusetts, a conference in Plymouth on water conservation, sustainable water management, and river restoration. This full-day conference will include sessions on stormwater, drinking water, recreational water, and wastewater, as well as fundraising, outreach, and science and data collection for nonprofits. The conference will also feature an exhibit hall with displays and posters from nonprofit organizations, government agencies, businesses, and students showcasing the latest work in research, conservation, river restoration projects, and techniques.

Nonpoint Source Pollution Conference - From April 28-29, the New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Commission will hold the 26th annual Nonpoint Source Pollution Conference in Freeport, Maine. This conference is the premier forum in the Northeast for sharing information and improving communication on nonpoint source pollution issues and projects.

Boating Safety Course - Through June 28, the Massachusetts Environmental Police will offer Boat Massachusetts, a free, state and nationally approved boating safety course for boaters age 12 and older, which 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.).

Ocean Academy Professional Development - On Wednesdays in March, Ocean Academy will offer a free professional development opportunity for high school science teachers at Buttonwood Park Zoo in New Bedford. This program will cover the advanced placement and Massachusetts State Frameworks dealing with the interactions and cross connections of the biogeochemical nitrogen, oxygen, and carbon cycles. Participants will learn about current research on connections between biogeochemical cycles and the relevance to the local Buzzards Bay Ecosystem and global marine systems. The material will align best with advanced placement classes, however, all high school biology and marine science teachers will find valuable and relevant material for their courses. Participants will earn 10 professional development credits upon completion of the full program. The program is limited to 20 participants. To register, see the online registration form.

Tuesday Tweets - Every other Tuesday through April, 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 feathered friends 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, 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:

  • Benthic Ecology Meeting - From March 4-8, the 44th annual Benthic Ecology Meeting will be held in Quebec City, Canada. 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.
  • Sea Rovers Clinic - From March 7-8, the Boston Sea Rovers will hold the 2015 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 2015 Clinic will include more than 40 daytime seminars, workshops, a marine sciences career fair, an international film festival, and a large display of dive equipment and services in New England.
  • Environmental Biologist Conference - From March 18-20, the New England Association of Environmental Biologists (NEAEB) will hold its 39th annual meeting in Bartlett, New Hampshire. NEAEB 2014 is a three-day conference that provides a forum for presenting current work and research on pressing environmental issues relevant to the region.
  • Coastal Geotools 2015 - From March 30-April 2, Coastal Geotools 2015 will be held in North Charleston, South Carolina. This bi-annual conference focuses on the technical information needs of the nation's coastal programs.
  • Oyster Symposium—Call for Presentations - From October 21-23, the 6th International Oyster Symposium will be held in Woods Hole. The conference is designed to allow representatives from academia, industry, business, conservation, restoration, government, and cultural communities from around the world to share research, case studies, and projects relative to oysters. Abstracts are sought for a wide variety of oyster related topics. For more information, see the Call for Presentations, which are due by April 1.

Other Items of Interest

New Federal Flood Risk Management Standards for Federal Projects - On January 15, President Obama signed an Executive Order that directs federal agencies to adopt a new flood standard that will reduce the risk and cost of future flood disasters by requiring federal investments in and affecting floodplains to meet higher flood risk standards. Requiring federally funded buildings, roads, and other infrastructure be constructed to better withstand the impacts of flooding will support the thousands of communities who have strengthened their local floodplain management codes and standards, and will help ensure federal projects last as long as intended.

Environmental Education Awards - EEA is now accepting applications for the 2015 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 27.

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 go to a community or group that exemplifies a sustainable environment and economy. For more information on these awards, including past awardees, see the Council website. Nominations are due by March 30.

National Groundwater Awareness Week - March 8-14 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.

Coastal Studies for Girls - Coastal Studies for Girls is accepting applications for the fall 2015 and spring 2016 semesters. Coastal Studies for Girls is a science and leadership semester school for 10th grade girls located in Freeport, Maine. Students are immersed in experiential courses that draw inspiration from the beauty and intrigue of the Maine coast and explore the natural world, conduct marine science research, and expand their leadership potential. Students earn a full semester of academic credit and financial aid is available for families that qualify. Applications are due by March 15.

Nick Winter Memorial Scholarship Fund - The Association of State Floodplain Managers (ASFPM) and the ASFPM Foundation will grant a $2,500 scholarship for the 2015-2016 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.

Beach Ambassadors - The Goldenrod Foundation is accepting applications now for volunteer Beach Ambassadors. Volunteers work in Plymouth at Nelson Park and Long Beach in the summer, guiding visitors of all ages in coastal zone nature discovery activities and teaching ecology and conservations basics. Ambassadors also staff booths at nature festivals, conduct citizen science, and participate in beach stewardship activities. Training starts in mid-April. Applications will be accepted until April 5 and spaces are limited.

Coastal and Marine Recreation Study for New England - The Northeast Regional Planning Body in coordination with Point 97, SeaPlan, and the Surfrider Foundation are seeking participants in the Coastal and Marine Recreation Study for New England. The survey will collect data about individual recreation use, such as sea kayaking, surfing, and general beach use. Anyone over 18 who has visited the New England coast at least once in 2014 is encouraged to participate. Take the survey, which is open until April 15.

Science Without Borders Challenge - The Khaled bin Sultan Living Oceans Foundation is seeking entries for the Science without Borders Challenge. Students, ages 14-19, are asked to submit videos (maximum of five minutes) on the theme, Protect Our Coral Reefs. Entries are due by April 28.

Marine Art Contest - Massachusetts Marine Educators and Stellwagen Bank Marine Sanctuary are seeking entries from students in grades K-12 for the 2015 Marine Art Contest. Drawings should be based on the theme, Amazing Ocean Creatures of Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary. Winning entries will become part of a touring exhibition and receive cash prizes. Entries are due by May 1.

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 Internships - The Woods Hole Partnership Education Program (PEP) is seeking applications for a 10-week summer program that combines undergraduate course work with research in marine and environmental science. Launched in 2009, PEP is a project supported by six science institutions in Woods Hole that is designed to promote a diverse scientific community by recruiting talent from minority groups that are under-represented in marine and environmental sciences. The 2015 PEP program will run May 30 through August 8. Applications are due by March 14.

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 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 29-August 14) through the museum’s FamilyID website.