CSO Newsletter
The Coastal States Organization represents the nation’s Coastal States, Territories, and Commonwealths on ocean, coastal, and Great Lakes resource issues.
Spotlight on Coastal Management:
Illinois Coastal Management Program
Coastal zone management balances development and protection of the vital natural resources that support thriving coastal communities and economies. The  Illinois Coastal Management Program  has been helping communities plan for an uncertain future since 2012. Projects such as the Sand Management Working Group and Waukegan Harbor Waterfront Working Group help communities keep people, property, and resources safe while planning for future recreational and economic development.

To learn more about issues impacting the state and the great work by the Illinois Coastal Management Program, click   here.

Find more information on the work being done by the State Coastal Zone Management Programs on CSO's Publication page.
2020 National Coastal and Estuarine Summit
Restore America’s Estuaries and the Coastal States Organization co-host  The National Coastal and Estuarine Summit . We bring together the coastal restoration and management communities for integrated discussions to explore issues, solutions, and lessons learned in their work. The Summit explores cutting-edge issues in coastal restoration and management and highlights the latest research through interactive sessions, plenary speakers, and poster presentations.  Learn more .

Be a part of the action by becoming a 2020 Summit sponsor . Exclusive sponsor benefits include:

  • National recognition as a Summit sponsor to audiences of 10,000+
  • Complimentary exhibit space and registrations
  • Opportunities to network with colleagues, potential partners, and clients

Check out the Sponsorship Brochure to learn more about the available opportunities here .
In the States and Regions
East Coast and Caribbean
As Threats Rise to Virginia’s Coast, State Works To Protect Habitats and Communities
Virginia’s  7,345 miles  of coastline are home to a variety of habitats, many of them critical to wildlife, coastal communities, and the state’s economy. To learn more about these areas, Pew spoke to Laura McKay, who leads Virginia’s Coastal Zone Management (CZM) Program. Read more

This Classroom on a Chesapeake Bay Island Taught Generations of Students. As the Sea Rises, Its Doors are Closing
Generations of middle and high school students have come here to learn about the fragile ecosystem of the bay. Now, the Virginia island, about six miles from Cris­field, Md., off the Eastern Shore, has succumbed to the very forces these educational programs have sought to fight: a warming climate, rising sea levels and disappearing shores. In the past 40 years, foundation officials said, water has swallowed about 70 percent of Fox Island — so named because when viewed from above, the land once resembled a fox plodding along through the waves. Seventh-graders from Georgetown Day School in the District stopped at Fox Island...were the last school group to step foot on the marshy ground. Read more

Florida’s Building Code Doesn’t Take Sea Rise into Account. That Could Change
But as of 2019, Florida’s massive, nationally renowned statewide building code still doesn’t have much to say about how to build with climate change in mind. That could change this year, as a new Florida International University study commissioned by the Florida Building Commission makes its way through the building code bureaucracy.   It’s too late to add anything to the 2020 code update, but a subcommittee accepted the findings unanimously this summer. One of its first recommendations: bring all new construction along the flood-prone coast up another foot. Read more

Branford, Connecticut, Sets Up Fund to Pay for Costs of Climate Change
James Finch is the director of finance for Branford, Connecticut which created a new coastal resiliency fund. Finch says Branford put $1 million in to start with more to be added each year. Over time, the invested funds are expected to grow. Then when it comes time to repair a flooded bridge, elevate houses, or improve stormwater drainage, the town can tap into those funds. Read more
Great Lakes
Interview: Scudder Mackey, Chief at the ODNR
Scudder Mackey, chief at the Office of Coastal Management at Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR), has his work cut out for him with the ambitious efforts being marshalled by stakeholders across Ohio and other states in the Great Lakes region. The focus: to improve the lakes’ water quality; to create, enhance, and restore wetland habitats, help keep shipping channels open, implement use and processing practices that increase capacity for dredged materials, and to forge partnerships that get results. Read more

Balloon Effect: Survey Highlights Great Lakes’ Balloon Pollution Problem
Balloons are synonymous with celebration – birthdays, weddings and graduation ceremonies. But once the party is over, discarded balloons can kill wildlife and pollute the environment. Lara O’Brien, a master’s student at the University of Michigan’s School for Environment and Sustainability...launched a  citizen science survey  to collect reports of balloon debris on local beaches and riverbanks. As of the end of October, she had just over 1,500 unique reports of balloon fragments. O’Brien is not alone in her concern about balloons in the Great Lakes. Volunteer trash pickup days sponsored by the environmental group  Alliance for the Great Lakes  tallied more than 18,000 balloons, balloon pieces or strings along Great Lakes shorelines between 2016 and 2018. Read more

County to Host Open House for New Floodplain Maps
Over the past few years, FEMA has been studying the Great Lakes and working toward creating new floodplain maps. Because the Great Lakes are the only ones of their kind in the world, scientists and engineers have had a difficult time creating the Flood Insurance Study (i.e., the work done to create the preliminary floodplain maps). The Great Lakes are unpredictable, and the proposed floodplain maps will now try to account for the localized flooding that occurs on the Lake Michigan shoreline. Read more
West Coast and Pacific
PSU Study Finds Microplastics in Majority of Razor Clams and Oysters Collected on Oregon Coast
The synthetic fibers that make up much of our modern clothing are making their way into the stomachs of the animals we eat, according to a new study from researchers at Portland State University.The vast majority of razor clams and oysters that were collected along the Oregon coast tested positive for microplastics, the researchers found. Read more

Major Project Begins to Tackle Erosion Hotspot on Oahu’s Most Famous Shoreline
Crews have started working on a new fix for an erosion hotspot in Waikiki. They will construct a sandbag groin that will extend out into the ocean. The structure at Kuhio Beach will be 95 feet long, 18 feet wide and 4.3 feet high. The $568,000 state project is being supported through a public-private partnership with the Waikiki Beach Special Improvement District Association, which will pay for half of the cost. Read more
Mississippi Governor Announces $53M in Coastal Restoration Projects
Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant announced a list of 15 restoration projects for 2019 during the annual Mississippi Restoration Summit in Biloxi. When implemented, these projects will add more than $53 million to the total of more than $560 million already being spent on restoration projects in the wake of the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill. The projects announced for 2019 are funded through the RESTORE Act and the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation Gulf Environmental Benefit Fund. Read more

Bay Access Projects Moving Forward in Daphne, Spanish Fort
Projects to improve public access to Mobile Bay in Daphne and Spanish Fort can move forward with the approval of more than $3 million in federal funding.
The announcement by Gov. Kay Ivey of funding for 16 Baldwin and Mobile County projects through the Gulf of Mexico Energy Security Act includes funding for a Causeway waterfront park and welcome center in Spanish Fort and the dredging of the D’Olive Bay channel in Daphne. Chris Blankenship, commissioner of the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, said the projects will make local waters more accessible to residents and visitors. Read more
Events & Webinars
National Sea Grant Law Center Launches Shellfish Aquaculture Podcast 
The  National Sea Grant Law Center  at the University of Mississippi  School of Law  has launched a shellfish aquaculture podcast. The eight-episode “Law on the Half Shell” podcast is part of a National Sea Grant College Program-funded collaboration to examine impediments to shellfish aquaculture across the United States. Learn more and find the episodes here .

New California Coastal Hazard Resilience Planning Resource
NOAA, USGS, the California Coastal Commission, the California Governor's Office of Emergency Service and Office of Planning and Research, the California Ocean Protection Council, the California State Coastal Conservancy, and FEMA have produced a new reference guide "Coastal Hazard Resilience Planning in California." While designed for California, the concepts are applicable to communities in other states. Explore the reference guide here .

Coastal Research Survey
American Shore & Beach Preservation Association (ASBPA) is working with the U.S. Coastal Research Program (USCRP) and the USGS Coastal Marine Hazards Research Program on this survey to evaluate coastal practitioners’ roles and responsibilities, management challenges, and preferred methods of data and tool delivery. The survey will be open between November 2019 and April 2020. The results of this short 8-minute survey will inform USCRP coastal research investments and guide future ASBPA S&T activities (this is part of our 3-year strategic plan). ASBPA’s Science & Technology Committee will publish white papers on each topic to provide science-based guidance for policy makers. The USCRP will use the information to guide investments in research, tools, and resources to address today’s most pressing coastal challenges. Take the survey here .

Margaret A. Davidson Graduate Fellowship
NOAA is accepting applications for a new fellowship program for graduate students at the national estuarine research reserves. One two-year fellowship opportunity will be available at each of the 29 coastal sites. Through a research project, fellows will address a key coastal management question to help scientists and communities understand coastal challenges that may influence future policy and management strategies. Applications must be submitted by December 20, 2019.  Apply here.
Job Openings
The views expressed in articles referenced here are those of the authors and do not represent or reflect the views of CSO.  

If you have a news item or job posting to include in future CSO Newsletters, please send an email to: rkeylon@coastalstates.org with a subject line: "Newsletter Content". Please include the information to be considered in the body of the email. 
Please note: CSO reserves final decision regarding published newsletter content and may not use all information submitted.
Coastal States Organization | 444 North Capitol St. NW, Suite 638, Washington, DC 20001 | 202-508-3860 | cso@coastalstates.org | www.coastalstates.org