On Air, On YouTube: Sea Grant Shows How We Can Best Prepare For the Next Severe Storm
Coastal Processes & Hazards - News

How Sea Grant is Conserving New York State
A Discussion with the Program's Director Bill Wise

By Andrew Lewin, Speak Up For Blue

New York, NY, July 29, 2015 - I became aware of the nation's Sea Grant programs when I began searching for jobs after completing my undergraduate degree back in 2001. I’ve always been curious about the Sea Grant programs because they are involved in interesting projects in various states. I wanted to make sure that I had someone from the Sea Grant program on the podcast when I started brainstorming about the Speak Up For Blue Podcast. I wanted to ask them what they were all about and how they were able to get involved in so many Ocean Conservation projects.

I reached out to New York Sea Grant on Twitter and they responded right away. They were really keen on talking about the Sea Grant program and its projects, which was perfect because I was too.

My conversation with NYSG's Director Bill Wise during the hour-long interview centered around Hurricane Sandy (also known as Superstorm Sandy), one of the deadliest and costly storms in US history (only surpassed by Hurricane Katrina). Hurricane Sandy was the largest hurricane in the Atlantic Ocean and was a Category 2 when it hit land in the Northeastern United States. It devastated many areas including New York, especially New York City, New Jersey, Connecticut, and other states. The damage cost the US $68 billion. Its aftermath has made the state and the federal government begin to prepare for future storms.

New York Sea Grant is partnering with many organizations to study and provide information to policy makers as to how best the state of New York can prepare for the next storm with minimal damage and no lost lives. [They are doing in several regards, including the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration-funded Coastal Storm Awareness Program, www.nyseagrant.org/csap. They also have storm-related resources at www.nyseagrant.org/hurricane and www.nyseagrant.org/superstormsandy.]

NYSG's Bill Wise came on the podcast to discuss how the Sea Grant program works and the important projects it is funding to show how governments find information to minimize damages in major storms and conserve the coast of New York State.

SpeakUpForBlue.com was created as a resource for the community of people who are looking to do what they can to protect the Ocean, it’s species, and all the wonders above and beneath it’s surface.

VIDEO: Covered in the hour-long interview with NYSG's Director Bill Wise, which can be viewed above, was Sea Grant's efforts to make people more aware of severe storms and how best to prepare for them. "Even after horrific incidences like Superstorm Sandy, people have a tendency to forget because they have their routines, are set in their ways and don't like those routines to be disrupted."

Wise also discusses the program's three main priorities, which are coastal hazards, sustainable fisheries and ecosystem studies and habitat conservation. He informs Speak Up For Blues' Andrew Lewin that New York is the only state in the country with marine and Great Lakes coastlines and NYSG is active on both.

Keeping pets safe from the harmful algal blooms that sometimes impact our waterways is also a focus of the discussion, as is the debate over climate changewhat people feel comfortable calling it, how it is changing our coastal ecosystems, including fisheries (lobsters, among others).


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More Info: New York Sea Grant

New York Sea Grant (NYSG), a cooperative program of Cornell University and the State University of New York, is one of 33 university-based programs under the National Sea Grant College Program (NSGCP) of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). The NSGCP engages this network of the nation’s top universities in conducting scientific research, education, training and extension projects designed to foster science-based decisions about the use and conservation of our aquatic resources. Through its statewide network of integrated services, NYSG has been promoting coastal vitality, environmental sustainability, and citizen awareness about the State’s marine and Great Lakes resources since 1971.

New York Sea Grant maintains Great Lakes offices at SUNY Buffalo, the Wayne County Cooperative Extension office in Newark and at SUNY Oswego. In the State's marine waters, NYSG has offices at Stony Brook University and Stony Brook Manhattan, in the Hudson Valley through Cooperative Extension in Kingston and at Brooklyn College. 

For updates on Sea Grant activities: www.nyseagrant.org has RSS, Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube links. NYSG also offers a free e-list sign up via www.nyseagrant.org/coastlines for its flagship publication, NY Coastlines/Currents, which is published several times a year.

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