News from Across the American Shoreline

Hawaii & Alaska
Science

Hi - Coastal pollution reduces genetic diversity of corals, reef resilience

A new study by researchers at the University of Hawai'i at Mānoa School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology (SOEST) found that human-induced environmental stressors have a large effect on the genetic composition of coral reef populations in Hawai'i.

International
Science

Australia - Decade of plover protection proves successful

The third-highest number of hooded plover fledglings has been recorded for the decade, with 17 little birds making it through to their first flight this season.

Gulf of Mexico
Waterways

TX - USACE Galveston District awards $16.9 million project for Port Arthur Coastal Storm Risk Management System

GALVESTON, Texas– On March 30, the Galveston District of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers awarded a $16.9 million contract to Great Lakes Environmental and Infrastructure LLC of Rocklin, California, for repairs and raises to the Port Arthur Coastal Storm Risk Management System.

Gulf of Mexico
Federal

LA - $300M in stimulus money OKd for hard-hit seafood industry

The COVID 19 monies that will soon be propelled into the nation’s hands include help for the seafood industry, which has been affected by closures in restaurants and bars.

Coastwide
Science

"Above normal" 2020 Atlantic hurricane season on tap, researchers forecast

As the world battles the coronavirus crisis, researchers are warning of a potentially active Atlantic Ocean hurricane season, which kicks off June 1 through the end of November.

International
Science

Bangladesh - As humans away, other creatures stage comeback

When humans are staying home in fear of contacting the coronavirus, other creatures of Mother Nature have staged a comeback to the world’s longest sea beach at Cox’s Bazar. A calm and placid ambience now prevails in the most frequently visited beach of the country, as the local authorities have imposed a ban on people’s movement.

Arctic & Antarctica
Science

What drives pollutant exposure in Barents Sea polar bears?

Polar bears in the Barents Sea population use their environment in two different ways. Bears that spend most of their time offshore are exposed to higher levels of pollutants than bears that stay along the coast due to differences in feeding habits, energy expenditure, and geographical distribution.

Gulf of Mexico
Engineering

LA - Bonnet Carre Spillway to open Friday to lower high Mississippi River in New Orleans

In an unprecedented fifth opening in the last five years, the Army Corps of Engineers will open 20 bays of the Bonnet Carre Spillway Friday morning to reduce pressure on river levees in the New Orleans area and keep the Mississippi River below its official flood stage of 17 feet.

Coastwide
Advocacy

The Battle to Save Our Oceans from an Invisible Threat

I joined Greenpeace on the high seas at the end of their year-long project to abolish a severe threat to our oceans

Southeast
Science

FL - Researchers team up with U.S. Coast Guard to release three baby sea turtles

As the global coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic escalates, marine biologists at Florida Atlantic University acknowledge that "wild" life must go on. Three 6-month-old green sea turtles, the last batch of the 2019 hatchlings at the FAU Marine Laboratory at the Gumbo Limbo Environmental Complex, were ready to be released. However, with closed beaches and scuba boats not permitted to travel, researchers from the FAU Marine Laboratory had to get creative.

Coastwide
Science

Leading scientists say NOAA plan to improve U.S. weather forecasting is incomplete

The latest U.S. government effort to better the nation’s weather forecast modeling may not be adequate to achieve its intended goal, according to leading scientists in the weather community. The effort, some say, lacks the necessary push for innovation.

Northeast
Federal

ME - NOAA To Test Electronic Monitoring In Herring Fishery

Federal fishing regulators are evaluating how to use electronic monitoring to help manage one of the largest fisheries on the East Coast.

Gulf of Mexico
Local

FL - ‘Huge deal’ ends dumping into Sound; GB will receive effluent

Santa Rosa County Commissioners approved signing an agreement Thursday, March 26 between Holley-Navarre Water, Gulf Breeze City and the Northwest Florida Water Management District that Commissioner Lane Lynchard of Gulf Breeze labeled “an absolutely huge deal for Santa Rosa County, Santa Rosa Sound, and Navarre Beach.”

Hawaii & Alaska
Fisheries

Ak - Alaska fishing community takes precautions as it prepares for salmon season

As Alaska’s top doctor put it, “We know the fish are coming regardless of COVID-19 or not and we can’t ask them to stay home.”

West Coast
Fisheries

CA - Crab season will remain open for both the Northern and Central Management Areas, says CDFW

The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) is providing the following important update on the status of the commercial California Dungeness crab fishery which includes the Northern Management Area (Fish and Game Districts 6, 7, 8 and 9) and Central Management Area (Fish and Game Districts 10 and south).

International
Fisheries

Russia - Mulling expansion of auctions for all fishing quotas

The Russian Antitrust Service (RAS) has proposed changes to the mechanism of fishing quota distribution that could expand a major overhaul of how the country manages its seafood sector.

Mid-Atlantic
Local

NC - Deadline Extended for Beach Access Grants

In response to the effects of measures the state is taking to help minimize the spread of COVID-19, local governments looking to apply for funding to improve public access to coastal beaches and waters have been given extra time to submit their preapplication.

Mid-Atlantic
Property

NC - Land Trust Completes Fifth Croatan Purchase

While teleworking in compliance with Gov. Roy Cooper’s executive order in response to COVID-19, the Coastal Land Trust completed the purchase of more than 568 acres adjoining Croatan National Forest in Craven County.

Coastwide
Federal

NOAA - Leadership and Empathy in Challenging Times (With Podcast Interview)

When I started thinking about this message weeks ago, I initially planned for it to tie together NOAA’s 50th anniversary, Women’s History Month, and lessons I’ve learned throughout my career. Now, as I settle into my home office for the foreseeable future, our world is being turned upside down by COVID-19.

International
Federal

South Africa - Go-ahead for mining on ten West Coast beaches

Environment minister rejects most of the appeals against Tormin expansion plans.

Southeast
Science

FL - One benefit from coronavirus closing beaches? There’s hope for a strong turtle nesting season.

Around the world, people have seen a few unexpected benefits from staying home to contain the new coronavirus. Blue skies made a rare appearance in Chinese cities, a change of pace from the smog. Clear water began flowing through canals in Venice, Italy.

Coastwide
Advocacy

Oceans can be restored to former glory within 30 years, say scientists

Major review reports recovery of marine life but a redoubling of efforts is still needed

Hawaii & Alaska
Fisheries

AK - Alaska aerial survey detects 4 miles of herring spawn

The Alaska Department of Fish and Game has measured miles of herring spawn in Sitka Sound.

International
Engineering

UK - Work starts to improve Folkestone district's coastlines defenses

Crucial work has started to reduce the risk of flooding and coastal erosion along Kent's shoreline.

Great Lakes
Waterways

NY - After Delay Over Water Levels, Shipping Season Opens On Lake Ontario

The shipping season on Lake Ontario and the St. Lawrence River is getting underway nearly two weeks later than industry stakeholders had hoped. The extra time was used by the International Lake Ontario-St. Lawrence River Board to reduce water levels in the system in order to mitigate the chance of flooding later this year. Unprecedented water levels in 2017 and 2019 caused devastating flooding along the shoreline.

West Coast
Fisheries

CA - New California rules anger water agencies, environmental groups

California regulators on Tuesday set new rules about how much water can be taken from the state's largest rivers, angering water agencies for restricting how much they can take and environmental groups for not making those limits low enough to protect endangered species.

International
Fisheries

Ireland - Irish aquaculture producers urged to make a strong case for economic assistance

Irish aquaculture producers have been asked to fill in a form to strengthen the sector's case for financial aid from the government as they struggle to deal with the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Northeast
Federal

ME - NOAA suspends Northeast fishing monitor requirement

An arm of the federal government is temporarily waiving the need for some fishing vessels to carry at-sea monitors.

Arctic & Antarctica
Science

Lost rainforest covered ‘most of West ANTARCTICA’ 90million years ago when South Pole was warm

Today's icy wasteland would've once played host to huge amounts of plant-life – during an unusually toasty period in history 90million years ago.

Southeast
Waterways

FL - There's too much nitrogen and phosphorus in U.S. waterways

Even minor amounts of human activity can increase nutrient concentrations in fresh waters that can damage the environment, according to a new study.

International
Waterways

Philippines - Shipping Container Pileup Could Shut Philippines’ Biggest Port

The Philippines’ largest port could shut in less than a week if shipping containers aren’t moved to free up space for new cargo amid a lockdown that’s preventing businesses from retrieving freight.

Coastwide
Recreation

Surf film to watch online free: Pump!

Spending more time in front of the screen than usual? More YouTubes than tubes? We’ve complied a half dozen surf flicks you can watch online free while the world has a little collective think about its behavior, you can find em all here.

Hawaii & Alaska
Recreation

HI - Maui’s mayor: Surfing or paddling is fine. Lounging on the beach is not

Maui’s mayor is clarifying the county’s stay-at-home order, telling residents that exercise at the beach or in the ocean is fine — but lounging on the sand is not.

Southeast
Recreation

Department Of Interior Sets Aside Portion Of Florida Beachfront As National ‘Wild Things’ Preserve

WASHINGTON—Officially safeguarding the area’s secluded hot tubs, three-way friendly bungalows, and unlit beaches where troublesome friends can be quietly disposed of, the Department of Interior set aside a 300-mile stretch of Florida coastline as a National Wild Things Preserve.

Coastwide
Science

Rising Tides: Will Mangroves Keep Up as Sea Levels Climb?

Ahead of World Wetlands Day, research shows how protecting mangroves can mitigate sea level rise – while also helping them adapt to its effects.

Northeast
Local

FL - Broward County’s Water Academy educates officials about costs, complexities of maintaining clean environment (Opinion)

Wastewater disposal. Flood control. Sewage piping. Sea-level rise. These are topics Broward County elected officials need to master, so there’s a need for a crash course once taking office.

Great Lakes
Science

Bowling Green State University researchers propose hydrogels to fight algal bloom

The Lake Erie region may soon have its watershed moment when it comes to curbing agricultural runoff thanks to researchers at Bowling Green State University.

Great Lakes
Local

MI - High Water Levels Threaten Marinas

A wet spring in already soaked west Michigan could spell trouble for marina businesses up and down the Lake Michigan shoreline that can't adjust the height of their boat docks as water levels are projected to continue rising.

Great Lakes
Engineering

‘We needed this five years ago:' As Great Lakes rise, no money for coastal study

A U.S. Army Corps of Engineers study that’s expected to examine coastal risk across the entire Great Lakes basin remains stalled for lack of federal funding two years after being authorized by Congress.

Southeast
Engineering

NC - North Carolina Coastal Federation snags grant for shoreline repairs in Cedar Point

The N.C. Coastal Federation recently received a $2.7 million grant from NOAA/NFWF for large-scale construction of living shorelines includes money for a large project to protect the Highway 24 causeway between Cedar Point and the bridges that lead into Swansboro to the west.

Caribbean
Tourism

USVI - COVID-19 Costing the US Virgin Islands Tourism Tens of Millions

Tens of millions of dollars in revenue for the Virgin Islands are practically up in smoke as the COVID-19 pandemic forced cruise ship cancellations, a ban on hotel stays and a stay-at-home order that all but cut off the territory’s lifeblood: tourism.

Southeast
Property

NC - Federal Judge Throws Out Takings Challenge to NC Coastal Programs setback

Homeowners denied the ability to rebuild a home within the state's oceanfront setback area filed a takings case in federal court. Federal District judge ruled that the taking case was not ripe for federal courts - plaintiffs need to go through state court first.

International
Science

South Africa - Fossil track sites tell the story of ancient crocodiles at the Cape

“The Pleistocene” often evokes images of ice ages – with much of the planet covered by great ice sheets. In reality, this geological epoch that started 2.6 million years ago and lasted until about 11,700 years ago was a time of wildly swinging climatic conditions, typically with long, cold “glacial” phases interspersed with warm “interglacials”.

Great Lakes
Engineering

MI - High water, erosion cause retaining wall along Manistee Riverwalk to collapse into channel

A cement block retaining wall tumbled into the Manistee channel over the weekend - just days before deconstruction was to begin - damaging part of the Manistee Riverwalk.

Pacific Northwest
Advocacy

Emerald Corridor - Pacific Northwest Rides Adaptation Wave

One of the most important stories you can cover in your community is how local institutions are preparing to adapt to more-destructive wildfire seasons, increased flooding, landslides and myriad other effects of a warming climate in the Pacific Northwest.

Northeast
Fisheries

Ocean data portal maps show significant shifts by mid-Atlantic fish species

A series of interactive maps published on the Mid-Atlantic Ocean Data Portal illustrates the shifts that have taken place over the last five decades by several commercially and recreationally important fish species living along the East Coast.

Northeast
Energy

When will the US get 1 GW of offshore wind on the grid?

NOW is concerned with the economic hardship imposed on secondary and tertiary U.S. suppliers due to the global spread of COVID-19.

Coastwide
Science

Scientists Decode Genome of Sterlet Sturgeon

An international team of researchers from the United States and Europe has produced the first high-quality genomic sequence for the sterlet (Acipenser ruthenus), a small species of sturgeon from Eurasia.

Northeast
Fisheries

MA - Fish aid 2 weeks away

$300 million part of $2.2 trillion congressional relief package

Hawaii & Alaska
Fisheries

HI - Fisheries and Stewardship: Lessons from Native Hawaiian Aquaculture

This article is the fourth in a series of articles published by NPQ, in partnership with the First Nations Development Institute (First Nations), that lift up Native American voices to highlight issues concerning environmental justice in Indian Country and identify ways that philanthropy might more effectively support this work.

Gulf of Mexico
Local

FL - PCB lifeguards training for beaches to reopen

According to Larry Couch, chief of the Panama City Beach Fire Rescue, the department’s eight seasonal lifeguards are in the midst of training to protect the city’s portion of the Gulf Coast.

Coastwide
Science

Researchers can better quantify the range of possible impacts from landfalling storms

What if Sandy had dealt New Jersey a glancing blow in 2012 instead of hitting it nearly head on? Or if the historic storm had made landfall farther south or north? What if the storm was smaller, slower, or more intense? How would the impacts change?

Southeast
Local

SC - Georgetown County Sheriff Office enforcing orders on beaches and waterways

Law enforcement officers from Georgetown County will be closely monitoring county beaches and waterways for the duration of the State of Emergency and enforcing Gov. Henry McMaster’s Executive Order to close all public access points because of the public health threat posed by COVID-19.

Gulf of Mexico
Energy

The U.S. Offshore Rig Count is down week-over-week

The overall U.S. rig count is down 44 rigs from the previous week to 728, with oil rigs down 40 to 624, gas rigs down four at 102, and miscellaneous rigs unchanged at two, according to the latest numbers from Baker Hughes.

Mid-Atlantic
Tourism

VA - Coronavirus forced the Outer Banks to close to visitors. Virginia Beach rental properties remain open to guests.

To stop the spread of the coronavirus, police in the Outer Banks set up check points earlier this month to prevent visitors and nonresident property owners from entering the popular vacation destination.

West Coast
Recreation

CA - Replica of tall ship which sailed from Boston to California almost 200 years ago and inspired classic book tips over in California dock

A replica of the sailing vessel Pilgrim that Richard Henry Dana Jr. wrote about in Two Years Before the Mast has sunk at its dock in Dana Point, California, where it served as a classroom for marine science and maritime history programs.

Southeast
Tourism

SC - Tourism hub is among US cities with highest share of jobs ‘at risk’ from coronavirus

Myrtle Beach, which brings in more visitors every year than any other South Carolina destination, may be one of the U.S. metros most vulnerable to coronavirus-related job losses. File/Gavin McIntyre/Staff

Coastwide
Federal

USN - 'Sailors Do Not Need to Die': Carrier Captain Pleads for Help as Virus Cases Surge

The commanding officer of an aircraft carrier sidelined in Guam says there are more than 100 positive cases of the illness caused by the coronavirus among its crew and is calling on Navy leadership to do more to protect the lives of his sailors.

International
Recreation

Video - This converted lifeboat is exploring the Arctic

In 2018, friends Guylee Simmonds and David Schnabel bought a 100-person survival lifeboat and spent just over a year transforming the utilitarian vessel with a mission to take it on an epic 5,000km, four-month cruise from the Sussex coast to the Arctic Circle. This is their story...

Gulf of Mexico
Science

LA - In Louisiana, brown pelicans emerge as a sign of hope, recovery and resilience

With spring underway, thousands of brown pelicans are returning to nest on Queen Bess Island — a bird rookery island south of New Orleans in Louisiana’s Barataria Bay. What may seem like an ordinary annual event is actually quite remarkable, and a promising sign of recovery and resilience for Louisiana’s state bird.

International
Fisheries

India - Tech startup extends help to Indian shrimp farmers navigating bleak new coronavirus landscape

Concern is building in the market over who is going to buy the most recently harvested shrimp.

Great Lakes
Engineering

IN - Flooding Along Lake Michigan's Coast Expected This Spring, Summer

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is projecting even higher water levels on Lake Michigan than last year. That means Indiana lakeshore towns could see more flooding this spring and summer.

International
Tourism

Australia - Could the Great Barrier Reef benefit from the current travel ban?

A lot of plans have been scrapped. This has led to crystal clear waters (if not dolphins) in Venice, iconic Balinese surf breaks uncrowded like the 1960s and an exodus of selfie sticks from Machu Picchu.

Coastwide
Advocacy

The coronavirus outbreak is part of the climate change crisis

Therefore, climate action should be central to our response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

International
Advocacy

South Africa - Nature may be Covid-19 lockdown’s biggest beneficiary

Nature along KZN’s coast is slowly improving amid the 21-day lockdown, with shark nets and drumlines temporarily removed.

Mid-Atlantic
Science

NJ - Ospreys Have A Shocking Spring Migration

Spring peepers and wood frogs are calling for a mate, flowers are blooming, crows are nesting, songbirds are singing, and river herring are migrating from the Atlantic Ocean to warmer coastal waters. All life is beginning to stir, except of course for people. Across New Jersey and the rest of the country, many people have begun adjusting to a life of home-bound isolation, an effort to radically reduce human-to-human contact and slow the spread of the coronavirus.

Coastwide
Federal

NFWF, NOAA: $43M in Coastal Resilience Grants

The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation and NOAA’s Office for Coastal Management has announced more than $43 million in grants to improve the resilience of local communities and wildlife habitat in the face of increasingly severe and frequent natural disasters.

International
Fisheries

Japan - Global warming wreaks havoc on Japanese edible kelp

In the not too distant future, global warming could deprive Japanese cuisine of an essential element: konbu, or edible kelp.

Coastwide
Engineering

The Dexterous History of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

Besides building emergency hospitals in response to COVID-19, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers does so much more.

West Coast
Science

CA - San Diego Calculated How Fast the Sea Will Rise, But Not the Cost

Whole portions of the city could crumble away in just decades, especially during storms when tidelines surge well past existing sea walls and other coastal infrastructure, according to an assessment of sea-level rise by the city.

International
Fisheries

UK - Farmed fish scandal

Shoppers across the UK are unknowingly consuming 2.5 times more fish than they think, according to 'Caught Out', a new report from Feedback and the Changing Markets Foundation which ranks the top ten UK supermarkets according to the sustainability of the farmed seafood that they sell.

Northeast
Fisheries

Canada - Fate of spring lobster fishery up in the air

Pierre LeBlanc needs to decide by Friday whether he’ll bring in dozens of temporary foreign workers.

Hawaii & Alaska
Federal

AK - Fish Factor: Seafood stimulus helps Alaska; SeaShare donations; Prince William Sound expansion

The US seafood industry received a $300 million assist from the $2 trillion COVID-19 relief package passed by Congress on March 27, and a wide coalition of industry stakeholders is hoping for more.

Gulf of Mexico
Local

MS - Ocean Springs mayor wants beaches shut down due to coronavirus. He has to wait on Jackson County

Crowds of more than 10 still gathered Saturday on Front Beach in Ocean Springs despite the threat of the new coronavirus.

International
Energy

China - Construction at 401.5MW Chinese Offshore Wind Project Back on Track

Construction at the Yangjiang Nanpeng Island offshore wind farm in China is back in full swing, according to MingYang Smart Energy.

International
Local

Australia - City dwellers move into their beach houses to wait out coronavirus outbreak

Holiday towns around the country are seeing a string of beach house owners move out of major cities and into their second homes to wait out the coronavirus outbreak.

Pacific Northwest
Local

BC - Coastal Community Lockdowns

To protect their communities from the spread of COVID-19 and to preserve precious medical resources, some British Columbia communities are asking visitors to stay home.

Arctic & Antarctica
Science

Antarctic Fish Is a Blood Doping Champion

To remain active in frigid environments, the bald notothen drastically adjusts oxygen in its blood

Northeast
Waterways

NY - Dredgers Make Way for USNS Comfort in New York

Dredgers are expediting operations in New York to make way for the U.S. Navy hospital ship USNS Comfort, which will dock in the epicenter of America's COVID-19 outbreak to assist hospitals that become overrun by the pandemic.

Gulf of Mexico
Fisheries

TX - Oysters in Galveston Bay are on the rebound. Will it stay that way?

SAN LEON — Joaquin Padilla steered his white oyster boat, MISS KOSOVARE, in deliberate, counter-clockwise circles on an unusually placid Galveston Bay. The boat’s oyster dredge — a chain mesh net with a heavy steel frame - dragged on the port side of the boat along the floor of the bay, raking up dozens of oysters of various sizes.

Southeast
Tourism

SC - Uneven SC beach closures anger residents, guests | COVID-19

Tempers flared on both sides of the barricades and some coastal South Carolina towns regrouped after the abrupt beach restrictions were put in place late last week because of the new coronavirus.

West Coast
Recreation

CA - TWO MORE SURFERS OF “EXTRAORDINARY SELF-CONFIDENCE” RUN GAUNTLET AT J-BAY; CAPTURED, THREATENED WITH SIX MONTHS JAIL

“ROUND THEM UP AND BRING THEM TO THE LOCALS. LOTS OF SPARE ENERGY TO SORT THEM OUT!” Locals red with indignation etc.

West Coast
Recreation

CA - LA County Beaches, Bike Paths, Promenades and Piers Closed

MANHATTAN BEACH, Calif. – Los Angeles may be famous for its beautiful beaches, but Los Angeles County is restricting access to all beaches, bike paths, promenades and piers in an effort to stop the spread of COVID-19.

Gulf of Mexico
Tourism

TX - As day-trippers continue to flock to island, Galveston closes beaches

GALVESTON -- In an unprecedented move, the city on Sunday closed beaches to the public and banned vehicular traffic from the West End beaches as it continues to deter visitors and public gatherings.

Int'l - Tunnel link in Irish Sea '£16bn less' than bridge

A tunnel between Northern Ireland and Scotland could cost the taxpayer up to £16 billion less than a bridge, according to the architect whose plans for a crossing were backed by Boris Johnson.

Coastwide
Federal

USA - Stimulus bill includes long-sought change to harbor fund

Provision would make it easier for Congress to spend money to maintain nation's harbors

Northeast
Waterways

NY - Manhattan Cruise Terminal to Host Hospital Ship

Manhattan Cruise Terminal and Pier 90 are set to play host to the USNS Comfort hospital ship, which is scheduled to arrive on Monday.

West Coast
Tourism

CA - Long Beach officially shuts down Boardwalk after rise in foot traffic there and increasing numbers of coronavirus cases

Long Beach officials took the extraordinary step Thursday of closing the 2.2-mile Boardwalk because of a rising number of coronavirus cases on the barrier beach and continuing foot traffic.

Southeast
Tourism

SC - Hilton Head considers urging islanders to shelter in place since sheriff can’t enforce

Note: The Hilton Head Island Packet and McClatchy News Sites are offering most coverage of the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic to all, with no payment required. We want to ensure our readers can make critical decisions for themselves and their families. To continue supporting vital reporting like this, please consider a digital subscription. For more coverage, subscribe to our daily coronavirus newsletter.

ME - Floating wind farms a hot topic at forum

ROCKPORT — If a changing climate, whale protection regulations and, now, the as yet immeasurable threat arising from the emergence of the coronavirus aren’t enough to keep fishermen awake at night, the potential development of offshore power generation facilities in the Gulf of Maine should do the trick.