This webinar was presented by Jorge Brenner of The Nature Conservancy, Greg Guannel and Gregg Verutes of the Natural Capital Project, and Joey Bernhardt of the University of British Columbia. It was cosponsored by the EBM Tools Network. Blue Carbon is a term used to define carbon that is stored and sequestered in coastal wetland habitats. Wetland habitats found along the Gulf Coast of Texas include coastal salt marshes, fresh water marshes, swamps, seagrass beds, and mangroves. All of these habitats are capable of storing, or “sinking”, significant quantities of carbon in their plant matter and soils. The Nature Conservancy’s Texas Blue Carbon Analysis estimated the total amount of carbon stored in coastal wetlands along the coast of Texas. These estimates are based on three “pools” of carbon that are associated with terrestrial and wetland plant communities: 1) above ground biomass (plant material), 2) below ground biomass (roots), and 3) soils. The study site was a zone that extended 10 kilometers inland from the entire Texas coastline. Carbon modeling was done using the InVEST Terrestrial Carbon model (www.naturalcapitalproject.org/InVEST.html). The results of this analysis are designed to help prioritize conservation/restoration activities in wetlands in order to maximize the benefits they provide to all of society. Currently only about 28% of the coastal wetlands analyzed in this study are found within protected conservation and management areas.
This webinar was presented by Amy Polaczyk of Warren Pinnacle Consulting, and it was cosponsored by the EBM Tools Network. In 2013, the states of New York and Connecticut and the New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Commission funded the application of the Sea-Level Affecting Marshes Model (SLAMM) to the entire coast of New York and Long Island Sound. Model simulations incorporated the most up-to-date wetland layers and hydro-enforced LiDAR-derived elevation data with an extensive tide range database and dynamic marsh accretion feedbacks based on mechanistic models of marsh and water quality characteristics. Simulations were run under four New York-specific scenarios of future sea level rise. Stochastic uncertainty analyses were completed, providing confidence intervals for projections, spatial maps showing likelihood of land conversions, and statistical indicators to characterize possible future outcomes and thus better assist decision making. This presentation will discuss the SLAMM application and results, with a focus on the results of the uncertainty analyses and their implications for identifying appropriate planning, management, and adaptation strategies. Learn more at www.warrenpinnacle.com.
This webinar was presented by by Elsa Haubold of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and it was cosponsored by NOAA National Marine Protected Areas Center, the EBM Tools Network, and MPA News. Conservation challenges of the 21st century are complex and include both local challenges and widespread threats such as drought, climate change, and large-scale habitat fragmentation. These complex threats impact entire landscapes and seascapes and multiple resources simultaneously and are too large for any single organization to meet alone. The Landscape Conservation Cooperatives (LCCs) provide a forum for States, Tribes, Federal agencies, non-governmental organizations, universities and other groups to work together in a new way. LCCs provide scientific and technical expertise for conservation planning at landscape scales and promote collaboration among their members in defining shared conservation goals. In this webinar, Dr. Elsa Haubold, National Coordinator for the Landscape Conservation Cooperative Network, will discuss the LCC Network's mission and objectives, the work of its partners, and how oceans are integrated into the LCC Network. Learn more about the LCC Network at http://lccnetwork.org.
Presented by Rod Fujita, Kendra Karr, and Willow Battista of Environmental Defense Fund. The Framework for Integrated Stock and Habitat Evaluation (FISHE) equips fishery managers with a low-cost and highly effective online resource to assess and sustainably manage their data-limited fishery. FISHE simplifies the intricate fishery assessment process by walking users through a structured step-by-step framework that combines multiple methods. This webinar will walk users through the FISHE framework and describe how EDF has worked in Belize to implement this data-limited approach. To try out FISHE yourself, please visit http://fishe.edf.org. This webinar was cosponsored by the EBM Tools Network.
Presented by Dawn Wright, Chief Scientist at Esri, and Jenny Lentz, Education Specialist at the Aquarium of the Pacific. The story map is a relatively new medium for sharing not only data, photos, videos, sounds, and maps, but for telling a specific and compelling story by way of that content. Story map apps provide the user with sophisticated cartographic functionality that does not require advanced training in cartography or GIS. Story maps are essentially web map applications built from web maps, which in turn are built from web-accessible data (including OGC WMS, WFS). Depending on the chosen complexity of a story map, it can be built in anywhere from a few minutes to a few days. With the beauty and utility of underlays such as the Esri Ocean Basemap, as well as a small tsunami of ocean content percolating up through a host of open data sites, there are powerful stories being told about coastal zone management, conservation, exploration and other forms of scientific field work. These stories are informing, educating, entertaining, and inspiring decision-makers on a wide variety of coastal issues. This presentation will take the audience on a small tour of a growing catalog of coastal and ocean story maps, many of which are accessible via MarineCadastre.gov and NOAA’s Digital Coast. It will also highlight the various resources available for building and deploying story maps, and discuss the utility of this medium for presenting, not just photos and videos, but more analytical results. Learn more about Story Maps at http://storymaps.esri.com. Webinar co-sponsored by the EBM Tools Network.
Presented by Lauren Wenzel, Acting Director of the NOAA National MPA Center; Dan Laffoley, Marine Vice Chair for IUCN's World Commission on Protected Areas; and, Alison Greenberg, Senior Manager for the Promise of Sydney at IUCN. This webinar focused oncoastal and marine recommendations and next steps from November's landmark global forum on world parks. Webinar co-sponsored by the NOAA National Marine Protected Areas Center, the EBM Tools Network, and MPA News.
Presented by Tim Wilkinson of the UNEP World Conservation Monitoring Center. The Blue Carbon Mapping Toolkit is a unique suit of tools developed by AGEDI, GRID-Arendal, and UNEP-WCMC to broadly assess the impact of development on coastal marine ecosystems and the associated blue carbon stocks in Abu Dhabi. The tool consists of three components; a web based application to add, edit and validate areas of habitat; a mobile application for use in the field; and a public-facing site that enables decision makers to quickly assess blue carbon stocks in their area of interest. This webinar will dive into how the toolkit works to provide an accurate, evolving map of blue carbon habitats. Learn more at http://bluecarbon.unep-wcmc.org. Webinar co-sponsored by the EBM Tools Network.
Presented by Jeremy Jackson of the Smithsonian Institution and the Scripps Institution of Oceanography. Dr. Jackson presented on the new report Status and Trends of Caribbean Coral Reefs: 1970-2012. The report is a result of a three-year joint effort of the International Coral Reef Initiative’s (ICRI) Global Coral Reef Monitoring Network (GCRMN), the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN), and the United Nations Environmental Programme (UNEP). It is the most detailed and comprehensive study of its kind published to date and is the result of the work of nearly 200 experts over the course of three years. Average Caribbean coral cover declined by half but varies greatly among locations with some sites showing little or no decline. The principal drivers of reef degradation so far have been local impacts of overfishing and coastal development that are potentially reversible by local action. Banning destructive fishing and strengthening coastal zone management would increase resilience of Caribbean reefs to the inevitable future impacts of climate change. Download the report at www.iucn.org/knowledge/publications_doc/publications/?uPubsID=5035. Webinar cosponsored by the EBM Tools Network and the National MPA Center.
Presented by Jason Blau and Lee Green of Redstone Strategy Group, and hosted by OpenChannels.org and the EBM Tools Network. Existing studies have helped define what good ocean planning (also known as Maritime or Marine Spatial Planning) looks like, the possible conservation and community benefits, and how it theoretically could cut costs and create economic value. However, little evidence has been compiled previously to show the actual results of ocean plans. This webinar previewed the results of a new empirical study of the economic, environmental, and social impacts of five established ocean plans: Massachusetts, Rhode Island, the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park, Norway’s Barents Sea, and Belgium. The study shows that on net, all of these plans resulted in broadly shared benefits. Economically, they delivered on average US$60 million per year in economic value from new industries (primarily wind) and retained value in existing industries. Environmentally, plans increased marine protection, ensured industry avoids sensitive habitat, cut carbon, and reduced the risk of oil spills. Socially, the plans encouraged constructive engagement, broad participation, and marine research, transcending the plans themselves. This webinar walked through the detailed results, including the benefits and costs of the ocean plans. Webinar co-sponsored by the EBM Tools Network.
Presented by Steven Lutz and Christian Neumann of GRID-Arendal. Blue carbon projects can work! A new report entitled ‘Building Blue Carbon Projects: An Introductory Guide’ showcases how using the value of carbon stored and sequestered in marine and coastal ecosystems can support conservation and sustainable management. This report aims to stimulate the discussion around projects that use a blue carbon approach, while also highlighting common blue carbon project elements and key issues from existing projects. Presented within the report are several case studies, including the Global Environment Facility's Blue Forests Project. This four-year global project is in its inception phase and aims to demonstrate how the values of carbon and other ecosystem services can be used to stimulate improved and sustainable ecosystem management. The project will be discussed in further detail in this webinar. Download ‘Building Blue Carbon Projects: An Introductory Guide’ at: http://bluecarbonportal.org/blog/blue-carbon-projects-can-work-new-report-shows. Webinar co-sponsored by the EBM Tools Network.