Coastal News

Open Ocean Trustees Approve New Monitoring Activity Focused on the Benefits of Coastal Restoration

The Open Ocean Trustees have approved a Monitoring and Adaptive Management (MAM) Activity Implementation Plan for the Coastal Restoration Effects on Inshore, Nearshore, and Offshore Ecological Condition. This MAM activity will use existing monitoring and assessment protocols to develop an approach for evaluating how Deepwater Horizon Natural Resource Damage Assessment (NRDA) restoration projects affect the fish and invertebrate species that rely on them (e.g., through improved water quality).

Estuaries are vital to fishing, tourism, and shipping industries. In fact, it is estimated that estuarine-dependent species comprise 95%, by weight, of the fish caught by commercial fishermen in the Gulf of Mexico. Additionally, estuaries support important local cultural traditions and provide critical habitat for fish and wildlife. Increasing human activity has been shown to degrade water quality in estuaries and other bodies of water adjacent to these activities. Poor water quality can decrease the biological diversity and richness within aquatic coastal communities. For this reason, the Deepwater Horizon Trustee Implementation Groups have approved one or more projects that address the Water Quality, Nutrient Reduction and Coastal/Nearshore restoration types.

To complete this work, the MAM activity will implement a multi-year, phased activity to plan and develop a science-based approach leveraging National Coastal Condition Assessment protocols (developed by the US Environmental Protection Agency) as well as fisheries population and food web evaluation protocols. Once the approach is developed and a priority location is selected, a pilot project will test the approach.

The first phase of the MAM activity is a planning phase that involves reviewing data and data gaps from existing monitoring programs and developing a scalable or transferable approach for assessing the benefits to oceanic resources from coastal restoration. The second phase will implement a pilot project to apply the approach in cooperation with multiple federal, state, and local partners.

This activity will lead to an understanding of how estuarine restoration activities may affect open ocean fish and water column invertebrate populations by improving nursery habitat or important prey species for those populations.


ECO Magazine is a marine science trade publication committed to bringing scientists and professionals the latest ground-breaking research, industry news, and job opportunities from around the world.


8502 SW Kansas Ave
Stuart, FL 34997

Newsletter Signup

The ECO Newsletter is a weekly email featuring the Top 10 stories of the past seven days, providing readers with a convenient way to stay abreast on the latest ocean science and industry news.