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Renewable Energy, Climate Impact & Blue Economy: New Coastal Climate Specialist
Publications: Success Stories - Extension (2022)

Port Jefferson Harbor, on Long Island’s North Shore, will serve as a regional operations and maintenance hub for New York’s offshore wind projects. Credit: Gwendolyn Gallagher/NYSG 


Gwen Gallagher, Coastal Climate Specialist, New York Sea Grant, P: (631) 632-8730, E: geg59@cornell.edu

New York Sea Grant’s new Coastal Climate Specialist will engage stakeholders with extension programming focused on renewable energy, local climate change impacts, and NY’s blue economy.

Stony Brook, NY, August 10, 2022 - Climate change has drastically impacted New York coastal communities, warranting enhanced efforts to increase resilience, minimize environmental and community impacts, and transition to renewable energy sources.

New York State has more than 2,000 miles of coastlines that are becoming increasingly affected by climate change. With this abundance of coastal areas, offshore wind has gained traction as a future source of renewable energy here. Multiple projects and ports are currently under development to achieve 9,000 MW of offshore wind energy in New York by 2035. Additionally, offshore wind represents a new sector entering the existing “blue economy” space, which supports sustainable use of ocean resources.

Extension programming is needed to ensure that local communities have access to the best available science in order to understand the coastal effects of climate change, ocean sustainability and the blue economy, and the emerging offshore wind industry. In 2021, New York Sea Grant (NYSG) leveraged funds to increase its program capacity to address climate change, renewable energy, and blue economy issues across New York State through the hiring of a new NYSG Coastal Climate Specialist.

With the rapid development of offshore wind in New York, the initial efforts of this new extension position will focus on creating and disseminating objective resources to engage stakeholders and educate local New York communities and ocean users about offshore wind and renewable energy. This specialist will represent New York as a member of the Northeast Offshore Wind Energy Liaison Initiative team and conduct extension for a Northeast Regional Sea Grant Network Offshore Renewable Energy (ORE) research project designed to better understand the effects of ocean renewable energy development on coastal communities. The U.S. Department of Energy Wind Energy and Water Power Technologies Office, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and Northeast Fisheries Science Center provided funding for the competitive process to select the ORE project.

Project Partners:

• Northeast Regional Sea Grant Network
• Rhode Island Sea Grant (Northeast Offshore Wind Energy Liaison Initiative)

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: www.nyseagrant.org has RSS, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube links. NYSG offers a free e-list sign up via www.nyseagrant.org/nycoastlines for its flagship publication, NY Coastlines/Currents, which is published quarterly.

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