Blogs

OpenChannels has a team of dedicated bloggers addressing targeted aspects of ocean planning and management, including communication, technology, ocean uses, and more. Our bloggers are experts in the field, drawing from their own knowledge and experience.

The OpenChannels community can also benefit from your knowledge and experience. We appreciate the diversity of perspectives in this field and welcome the use of OpenChannels for sharing these views. Do you have a perspective on ocean planning you would like to share? We'll help you do that right now: just click the button above and follow the prompts. If you are interested in blogging but have questions, please email Raye Evrard at raye [at] octogroup.org. We look forward to your contribution!

The OpenChannels Team


Blogs
Posted on February 4, 2019 - 6:58pm, by Anonymous (not verified)

By Jenny Seifert

It’s a no-brainer that science is critical for managing ocean resources. But actually applying science in ways that are useful to managers is not always easy. Differences in pace, scale, and priorities can thwart a clean science-to-management application.

This is not a story about the magic solution for this predicament (sorry), but it is a story about how the power of connection – specifically between data and people – can be a key ingredient.

It doesn’t hurt that this story takes place in Hawai’i, whose magical waters draw people in droves. In 2017 alone, 9.4 million tourists generated nearly US$17 billion in direct tourism revenue for the state, and 89 percent of its residents participate in ocean activities at least once a month.

Blog series logo
Posted on January 24, 2019 - 2:03pm, by raye

by Celeste Barnes-Crouse

Allow me to preface this article with this: I’ll be the first to admit that I’m guilty of promoting the “sustainable lifestyle” (refusing single-use plastics, buying organic foods, driving less often, etc.) as trendy and achievable. While this comes from a genuine desire to make better choices for the planet, it is flawed. Writing this piece is a way to acknowledge my privilege to engage in sustainable living and discuss where the movement could improve. When I say “my privilege”, I’m referring to the “unearned cultural, legal, social, and institutional rights [or benefits] extended to a group [or individual] based on their group [race, class, ability, etc.] membership”. I recognize that my race and socio-economic position enable me to participate in sustainability more readily than others.

Blog series logo
Posted on January 15, 2019 - 4:19pm, by abrown

By Charlotte Dohrn

Perched at the end of a narrow, low-lying peninsula on the Washington coast, the city of Westport is no stranger to exposure. The sleepy fishing town gets about twice as much rain as Seattle, and in the winter it’s often pummeled by fierce gales, king tides, and swells that easily exceed 10 feet.

Blog series logo
Posted on December 17, 2018 - 3:39pm, by abrown

By Henry Bell

Do you know where your favorite seafood comes from? I grew up in Minnesota, and aside from the occasional walleye or perch that came from a nearby lake, I certainly didn’t. Perhaps the grocery store label would tell me if my fish was farmed or wild-caught, but what about the fishery it came from? How about where it was processed or who imported it? Dare I question who caught it or what type of gear was used? Should I care?

Read the full text HERE

Blog series logo
Posted on December 12, 2018 - 1:49pm, by abrown

By Lou Forristall

What do Orcas have to do with I-1631? Nothing, yet. That’s a problem. Photo Credit: Oregon State University

I-1631, the second attempt to put a price on carbon emissions in Washington state via ballot initiative, was rejected by voters this November. 1631 sought to place a fee on carbon emissions and use the revenue to fund programs and projects related to the environment. The oil and gas industry spent $31 million to defeat it, annihilating the record in Washington for spending on a ballot initiative.

Despite what has been characterized as 1631’s “resounding defeat,” there is reason for optimism regarding climate action in Washington after 1631. Yes, it lost by about 6 points.  But it performed well compared to its 2016 predecessor, I-732. 732 was a revenue neutral carbon tax that lost by almost 10 percent. That’s progress! Small progress, admittedly, but 1631 faced some major hurdles that 732 did not.

Read the full blog HERE

Blog series logo
Posted on December 12, 2018 - 1:44pm, by abrown

By Brittany Hoedemaker

As Washington—and the rest of the world—buzzes about the declining Southern Resident Killer Whale population, I find myself thinking ever more about another predator in our waters: the sixgill shark.

The bluntnose sixgill shark (Hexanchus griseus), with its fluorescent green eyes and six (as opposed to the common five) gills can be found in temperate and tropical waters globally. The usually sluggish sharks live along the ocean floor, rendering them out of sight and out of mind for most people despite their wide distribution. However, these sharks still find themselves listed as Near Threatened by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) due to depletion from incidental bycatch and sport fishing.

Read the full blog HERE

Blogs
Posted on December 12, 2018 - 12:41pm, by raye

By: Gulf and Caribbean Fisheries Institute (GCFI)

Key Largo, December 11, 2018 Managers from four Mexican marine national parks are visiting the Florida Keys for a technical exchange to address an emerging threat posed to coral reefs by a coral disease that was first documented in Florida and is being now reported in other parts of the Caribbean. 

Marine natural resource managers from the Caribbean have expressed concern about the spread of a previously unknown coral disease that has recently been identified in Florida. The Stony Coral Tissue Loss Disease spreads rapidly and affects some of the slowest-growing and longest-lived reef-building corals, including the iconic brain corals, star corals and pillar corals. Scientists are still uncertain about the cause of the disease. 

Blog series logo
Posted on November 30, 2018 - 10:31am, by abrown

By Jessica Knoth

Tigers, elephants, gorillas, dolphins, sharks…you can picture each one, right? That’s because they are charismatic megafauna, or, in other words, species that are compelling because they are viewed as beautiful, impressive, or cute. Ironically, many of these species also happen to be endangered. A 2001 study by Anna Gunnthorsdottir found that there are stronger efforts to conserve some endangered species over others, simply because the animal is perceived to be physically attractive. The increased funding, habitat protection, and policy support for these species due to their perception by the general public can lead to more conservation successes.

Read the full blog HERE

Pages