In Media: Community Engagement a Focus of Sea Grant’s New Statewide Coastal Resilience Funding
Climate - News

— Published by Stony Brook University's SBU News

Stony Brook, NY, April 5, 2023 — Several New York Sea Grant (NYSG) projects will receive support from a $8.1 million national investment to strengthen resilient coastal communities. NYSG’s ongoing efforts such as Community Flood Watch in NYC as well as statewide initiatives focusing on the MyCoast NY community science platform and natural and nature-based shorelines will be bolstered and expanded.

A truck plows down a flooded city street near the shore in Far Rockaway, Queens. This photo was taken in January 2022 during a “sunny day” high-tide flood event. “Sunny day” floods, also called “nuisance” or “tidal flooding,” bring a range of impacts to coastal areas. Credit: Giles Ashford, NYC Community Flood Watch Project

Two years of funding totaling $125,000 in national support will allow NYSG to create a train-the-trainer program to grow Community Flood Watch in NYC and develop extension and outreach resources for the pilot MyCoast NY program to expand use of a publicly available, centralized database of crowd-sourced photos of flooding, storm damage, and shoreline change from areas across Long Island and in the Hudson Valley to across other parts of the state.

MyCoast NY — a downloadable app and web portal developed by NYSG and the NYS Water Resources Institute — is used to collect and analyze photos of flooding, changing shorelines, and hazardous weather impacts across New York’s various water bodies and builds off of the work of the Community Floodwatch Program, expanding it statewide.

Two NYSG specialists — Kathleen Fallon, a NYSG coastal processes and hazards specialist at Stony Brook University, and Jessica Kuonen, NYSG’s Hudson Estuary specialist — serve as co-leads for MyCoast NY, the reports from which can be beneficial for emergency managers, local planners, residents, and state agencies to understand our changing environment and the impacts of flooding on every New York community.

“Photos of flooding show what will eventually happen more regularly,” said Fallon. “We’re starting to see these changes taking place now and they give a glimpse of what we can expect in the future.”

“Heavy rains are happening more often across New York as the Northeast becomes wetter,” added Kuonen. “In addition, there’s more coastal flooding from high tides as the sea level rises. MyCoast NY is a way for New Yorkers to document — and learn about — these changes.”

Download the MyCoast NY app and help document local flooding and storm impacts through community science.

An additional $150,000 is being provided for an NYSG effort to connect diverse end-users in New York City and New York State with relevant expertise around multi-beneficial, more resilient alternatives to traditional shoreline armoring. Project leads will co-produce forums, workshops, data visualization, and communications products, and formalize a community of practice to share key findings with local, national, and international audiences.

A longer version of this article appeared on the New York Sea Grant website.

More Info: New York Sea Grant

New York Sea Grant (NYSG), a cooperative program of Cornell University and the State University of New York (SUNY), is one of 34 university-based programs under the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Sea Grant College Program.

Since 1971, NYSG has represented a statewide network of integrated research, education and extension services promoting coastal community economic vitality, environmental sustainability and citizen awareness and understanding about the State’s marine and Great Lakes resources.

Through NYSG’s efforts, the combined talents of university scientists and extension specialists help develop and transfer science-based information to many coastal user groups—businesses and industries, federal, state and local government decision-makers and agency managers, educators, the media and the interested public.

The program maintains Great Lakes offices at Cornell University, SUNY Buffalo, SUNY Oswego and the Wayne County Cooperative Extension office in Newark. In the State's marine waters, NYSG has offices at Stony Brook University in Long Island, Brooklyn College and Cornell Cooperative Extension in NYC and Kingston in the Hudson Valley.

For updates on Sea Grant activities: has RSS, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube links. NYSG offers a free e-list sign up via for its flagship publication, NY Coastlines/Currents, which is published quarterly.

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