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Please see the list below for more upcoming events from OpenChannels by OCTO.

Upcoming Webinars and Events

Plastics or Planet? Moving Beyond Plastics

Event Date: 
Thursday, June 4 at 1pm US EDT / 10am US PDT / 5pm UTC

Presented by: Judith Enck of Beyond Plastics

This webinar will explore the environmental, economic, and health implications of plastic production, use, and disposal. Judith Enck of Beyond Plastics will discuss: 1) the nexus of climate change and plastic production and why we can’t recycle our way out of the problem, 2) the potential impacts of the plastics industry’s plans to double production and how the marine debris community can respond to this challenge, 3) the latest plastic reduction laws that are being adopted by local and state governments, and 4) the new federal bill the Break Free From Plastic Pollution Act.

Co-sponsors: OCTO (MarineDebris.info, OpenChannels, The Skimmer, MPA News, EBM Tools Network)

Virtual Ecosystem Scenario Viewer (VES-V): A new tool for visualizing marine ecosystem models

Event Date: 
Tuesday, June 16 at 2pm US EDT / 11am US PDT / 6pm UTC

Ecosystem models can help explore the tradeoffs inherent in natural resource management decisions. However, the complexity that makes the models robust can also limit the ability of many audiences to understand and use the information provided. A new tool Virtual Ecosystem Scenario Viewer (VES-V) helps to address this problem by illustrating the responses of virtual marine ecosystems to a range of living marine resource management scenarios. These visualizations can help diverse audiences see the potential for applying models in their own marine resource management work and can help facilitate stakeholder engagement and input when exploring future tradeoff scenarios in marine resources management decision making. VES-V is designed to handle a wide range of model outputs and data. This webinar will provide an overview of VES-V and provide a forum for discussing a variety of applications for the tool.

Presented by: Isaac Kaplan and Howard Townsend of NOAA

Co-sponsors: OCTO (EBM Tools Network, The Skimmer, OpenChannels, MPA News, MarineDebris.info)

Assessing ecosystem risks: The IUCN Red List of Ecosystems

Event Date: 
Tuesday, June 30 at 1pm US EDT / 10am US PDT / 5pm UTC

Presented by: Radhika Murti and Marcos Valderrábano of IUCN

Rapid climate change, increasing risks of disasters, biodiversity loss … where is the world heading to? In this changing world, reliable assessments of ecosystem status serve to raise awareness about threats to ecosystems and the resulting impacts on human well-being, as well as to demonstrate how improved ecosystem management can reduce risks, enhance resilience, and promote adaptation. The IUCN Red List of Ecosystems is a scientifically robust and global standard for how we assess the status of ecosystems while contributing to address current challenges. What differentiates the Red List of Ecosystems from other methods? Join us to learn more about this tool, real cases, and its applications beyond conservation areas.

Co-sponsors: OCTO (EBM Tools Network, The Skimmer, OpenChannels, MPA News, MarineDebris.info)

Beyond Polarization: Learning from the Unlikely Story of California’s Marine Protected Areas

Event Date: 
Wednesday, July 15 at 1pm US EDT / 10am US PDT / 5pm UTC

At a time when the United States is divided and positive collective action feels out of reach, the creation of California’s network of marine protected areas provides a story of hope and hard work. After a contentious ten-year collaborative public process, the establishment of a network of 124 protected areas was considered nothing short of miraculous, having navigated political and interest-based polarization, bureaucratic delays, evolving science, and historic financial difficulties. What lessons can be drawn from the experience? This webinar will report on the conclusions of a new Island Press book that analyzes the story. It will also explain how the protected areas designation process has influenced the implementation of the MPA network, and describe elements of the California experience that may be adapted elsewhere.

Presented by: Steven Yaffee of the University of Michigan and Kaitilin Gaffney of the Resources Legacy Fund

Co-sponsors: NOAA National MPA Center and OCTO (MPA News, OpenChannels, EBM Tools Network)

Investigate Your Ocean Neighborhood with OceanReports

Event Date: 
Tuesday, July 28 at 1pm US EDT / 10am US PDT / 5pm UTC

Presented by: Christine Taylor of BOEM

Understanding ocean areas is critical for natural resource management, offshore energy planning, navigation planning, and aquaculture siting as well as many other applications. OceanReports is a publicly available web-based application that allows users to select an Area-of-Interest (AOI) anywhere in the US Exclusive Economic Zone and instantly obtain over 70 unique infographics with analyses of the location. Infographics include the area’s energy and minerals, natural resources, transportation, infrastructure, oceanographic and biophysical conditions, and contribution to the local ocean economy. OceanReports allow users to explore pertinent ocean data through interactive pop-ups and visualizations, toggle map displays of each layer, share results by web link, and print custom reports to inform various permitting processes. Metadata, data download, background information, and the analysis rule-sets are also available. In this webinar, the tool will be explained and demonstrated with a question and answer period to follow. Use the tool at https://marinecadastre.gov/oceanreports.

Co-sponsors: OCTO (MarineDebris.info, OpenChannels, The Skimmer, MPA News, EBM Tools Network)