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Projects

A Multidisciplinary, Integrative Approach to Valui...

We are estimating the economic value from natural and nature-based infrastructure investments to stabilize coastline. Using hazard risks along the U.S. Pacific Northwest coast, we are assigning a dollar value ...
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Acoustic Tracking of Fish Movements to Support Hab...

We are monitoring the movement and residence time of fish in several coastal ecosystems. Our objectives are to document habitat preferences of fish, the timing and scales of their mobility, and ...
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An Early Warning System for Pseudo-nitzschia Harmf...

Blooms of some species of the diatom Pseudo-nitzschia produce a neurotoxin that accumulates in shellfish, which can cause illness and even death in humans who eat them. Shellfish managers monitor ...
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An Ecological Assessment to Support NOAA’s Choptan...

The Choptank watershed is an ecologically and economically valuable resource and designated Habitat Focus Area. We are collecting and synthesizing biological, chemical, and physical data to characterize the condition of ...
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Assessing Coral Bleaching in Four U.S. Caribbean M...

In 2005, high sea temperatures caused coral bleaching in the Caribbean. The goals of this this project were to characterize the spatial extent of coral bleaching and recovery and to ...
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Assessing the Geographic Variability in Vulnerabil...

Coastal communities are increasingly vulnerable to climate effects, such as sea level rise and coastal erosion. To address these and other changing coastal risks in Los Angeles County, NCCOS researchers ...
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Assessment of Hurricane Impacts to Coral Reefs in ...

In 2017, major hurricanes impacted coral reefs in both Florida and Puerto Rico. We quantified these impacts using diver-based surveys, and our information was used to guide targeted emergency stabilization ...
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Assessment of the Beneficial Use of Dredged Sedime...

Navigation channels across the country require regular maintenance dredging to avoid infilling with sediments and becoming impassible. In an experimental strategy that is often referred to as “beneficial use,” sediments ...
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Baseline Assessment of Guanica Bay, Puerto Rico in...

We completed a baseline assessment of the environmental conditions in Guanica Bay, Puerto Rico, to help coastal managers identify the most appropriate restoration projects, and their effectiveness, in support of ...
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News

Study Highlights Tipping Point in Sediment Transpo...

Newport Bay is an urban estuary of southern California where sediment is managed for water quality, wetland habitat, recreation, navigation and the provision of urban amenities. Dredging focuses on sediment ...
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Researchers Determine Flood Risk for 13 Coastal Co...

Coastal communities need to know what actions to take to mitigate flooding, now and in the future as sea level rises. A new NCCOS-funded study helps meet this need by ...
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Study Incorporates Uncertainty to Improve Projecti...

Figure 1: Study model projections of mean tidal marsh elevations (top) and carbon accumulation (bottom) across four sea level rise scenarios. Uncertainty is indicated by the shaded areas which represent ...
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NCCOS Publishes Social Vulnerability Assessment in...

Coastal communities are increasingly vulnerable to climate-driven impacts, such as sea level rise (SLR) and coastal erosion. To address these risks in the Puget Sound region of Washington State, Washington ...
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Cape Lookout National Seashore Environmental Quali...

NCCOS scientist collects samples at Cape Lookout National Seashore adjacent to the abandoned town of Portsmouth, NC. NCCOS scientists have released a final report assessing the environmental quality of sediment ...
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Thin Layer Sediment Placement Boosts Marsh Growth ...

NCCOS scientists released results from a new study showing the effectiveness of thin layer placement in boosting elevations of low-lying marshes. The article recently published in the journal of Ecological ...
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Beach Width Provides Greatest Protection Against F...

Dune erosion, or scarping, caused by Hurricane Matthew along Shackleford Banks, North Carolina. Credit: Laura Moore. Beaches and sand dunes are critical to protecting coastal communities from storm surge, but ...
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Engineering With Nature® Podcast Episode Highlight...

NCCOS and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Engineering With Nature® (EWN) Initiative began collaborating on coastal and community restoration projects in 2016. The evolution of these collaborations takes ...
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New Publication Reports Prevalence of Shellfish To...

Spring in the Bering Strait; several miles offshore, south of the community of Wales, Alaska. Credit: Gay Sheffield, University of Alaska Fairbanks/Alaska Sea Grant. The NCCOS Ecology & Oceanography of ...
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NCCOS Research Supports Olympic Coast National Mar...

Surfers walk Second Beach, Washington, at sunset. Credit: Matt McIntosh, NOAA The Olympic Coast National Marine Sanctuary (OCNMS) has released its latest condition report, which assesses the status and trends ...
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Products

Maps, Tools & Applications

This Data Explorer Map contains ecological and socioeconomic datasets including management boundaries, human use activities, fish and oyster surveys, and benthic habitats in the NOAA Choptank Habitat Focus Area (HFA) Ecosystem Assessment. The tool allows managers, stakeholders and the general public to visualize data that assists with decision-making about management of the ecosystem in the Choptank watershed.
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NS&T is comprised of three nationwide programs, Benthic Surveillance, Mussel Watch and Bioeffects that are designed to describe the current status of, and detect changes in, the environmental quality of our nation's estuarine and coastal waters through environmental monitoring, assessment and related research. In addition, NS&T has also completed special studies designed to help assess the environmental impacts of various events.
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The NCCOS Regional Ecological Assessments (REA) website provides access to data contained in the Coastal Ecology Database, which were collected as part of a series of Regional Ecological Assessments conducted by NCCOS and partners throughout various estuarine, coastal, and continental shelf areas of the U.S.
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NCCOS scientists have developed an easy-to-use numerical wave exposure model (WEMo) that uses linear wave theory to calculate actual wave height and derived wave energy while taking into consideration wind generation and local water depth characteristics such as shoaling and dissipation from breaking waves. WEMo also provides predictions of seafloor sediment movement.
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Data & Publications

A comparison of seafloor habitats and associated benthic fauna in areas open and closed to bottom trawling along the central California continental shelf

A number of studies have shown that mobile, bottom-contact fishing gear (such as otter trawls) can alter seafloor habitats and associated biota. Considerably less is known about the recovery of these resources following such disturbances, though this information is critical ...
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A coupled physical-biological model of the Northern Gulf of Mexico shelf: model description, validation and analysis of phytoplankton variability

The Texas-Louisiana shelf in the Northern Gulf of Mexico receives large inputs of nutrients and freshwater from the Mississippi/Atchafalaya River system. The nutrients stimulate high rates of primary production in the river plume, which contributes to the development of a ...
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A Decade of Water Level Changes along the New River Estuary in North Carolina, USA

From 2008-2018, our program evaluated coastal marsh resilience to changes in inundation along the New River Estuary in Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune (MCBCL) near Jacksonville, NC. To properly contextualize marsh parameters and processes across a range of tidal influence, ...
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A guinea pig's tale: learning to review end-to-end marine ecosystem models for management applications

A shift towards ecosystem-based management in recent decades has led to new analytical tools such as end-to-end marine ecosystem models. End-to-end models are complex and typically simulate full ecosystems from oceanography to foodwebs and fisheries, operate on a spatial framework, ...
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A modeling study of physical controls on hypoxia generation in the northern Gulf of Mexico

The Louisiana shelf (LA shelf) in the northern Gulf of Mexico experiences hypoxic conditions every summer due to the combination of eutrophication and strong water column stratification. Here we use a three-dimensional circulation model coupled with a simple oxygen model ...
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A quantitative genetic approach to assess the evolutionary potential of a coastal marine fish to ocean acidification

Assessing the potential of marine organisms to adapt genetically to increasing oceanic CO2 levels requires proxies such as heritability of fitness-related traits under ocean acidification (OA). We applied a quantitative genetic method to derive the first heritability estimate of survival ...
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Advancing Coastal Science 2017-2021

Advancing Coastal Science lays out four priorities developed as a result of a lengthy stakeholder engagement process. These priorities will be our driving force over the next five years, and will guide NCCOS’s science and competitive research investments. NCCOS will ...
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An Earth's Future Special Collection: Impacts of the coastal dynamics of sea level rise on low-gradient coastal landscapes

Rising sea level represents a significant threat to coastal communities and ecosystems, including altered habitats and increased vulnerability to coastal storms and recurrent inundation. This threat is exemplified in the northern Gulf of Mexico, where low topography, marshes, and a ...
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An ecosystem services assessment using bioextraction technologies for removal of nitrogen and other substances in Long Island Sound and the Great Bay/Piscataqua Region Estuaries

A State-Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Nutrient Innovations Task Group concluded in a 2009 report (State -- EPA Nutrient Innovations Task Group, 2009) that 'continuing the status quo at the national, state, and local levels and relying upon our current practices ...
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An Integrated Assessment Model for Helping the United States Sea Scallop (Placopecten magellanicus) Fishery Plan Ahead for Ocean Acidification and Warming

Ocean acidification, the progressive change in ocean chemistry caused by uptake of atmospheric CO2, is likely to affect some marine resources negatively, including shellfish. The Atlantic sea scallop (Placopecten magellanicus) supports one of the most economically important single-species commercial fisheries ...
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General Pages

Coastal Change

Coastal ChangeVulnerability, Mitigation, and RestorationVulnerability and Risk AssessmentCoastal decision makers need to understand the risks and vulnerabilities facing their communities and ecosystems in order to help them become resilient. Coastal ...
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ESLR Event Response Program

Effects of Sea Level Rise (ESLR) Event Response Program The pursuit of more resilient coastal communities and ecosystems has led to international efforts to better quantify environmental resilience and realize ...
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Island Restoration to Meet "Triple-Win" Engineerin...

Island Restoration to Meet "Triple-Win" Engineering With Nature® Outcomes Presentation Please enable JavaScript Download VideoDownload Closed Captions File ...
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The Effects of Sea Level Rise Program (ESLR)

The Effects of Sea Level Rise Program (ESLR)Announcing Awards for Fiscal Year 2021 ESLR Federal Funding OpportunityThe ESLR program awarded $4.6 million in fiscal year 2021 to fund five new ...
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Wave Exposure Model (WEMo)

Wave Exposure Model (WEMo)Go directly to download and system requirementsThe IssueHydrodynamic factors profoundly impact the environment of coastal areas. Wind waves, particularly waves associated with storms, are unpredictable and can ...
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WEMo Download

Download the Wave Exposure Model (WEMo)If you have any installation problems, please contact nccos.webcontent@noaa.govTerms and Conditions of UseBy using this software tool, you indicate your awareness of and consent to ...
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NOAA Internship Opportunities

Water Level Decision Support Geospatial Analysis

CO-OPS has developed a geospatial inventory tool to evaluate its National Water Level Observation Network (NWLON). The tool was developed to assist planners in modernizing the NWLON network. The tool ...
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Experimental Quantification of Life History and Ec...

This project uses experimental methods to quantify the effects of environmental factors on success of early life-stages of marine fishes. Each year we are involved in new experimental studies that ...
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Analysis of Ocean Acidification and Co-stressor Ef...

This project evaluates the potential effects of ocean acidification and other environmental co-stressors on fish populations. The effects on fish of an increased level of ocean acidification –another consequence of ...
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Understanding NOAA's Benefit to Society

NOAA's responsibilities range from weather and climate forecasting to ensuring the sound management of the nation’s coastal and ocean resources. In fulfilling its mission, the agency’s programs create economic value ...
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Air-sea interaction from the Tropics to Arctic

Accurate air-sea fluxes are essential to weather-climate forecast/projection. Recently developed autonomous observing technology (e.g., Saildrones) enable us to collect in situ flux data in remote region of the world, such ...
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Identifying and Summarizing Research: Marine Mamma...

NOAA Fisheries is conducting vulnerability assessments to identify which marine protected species are vulnerable to climate change and what makes them vulnerable. These vulnerability assessments use existing life history information ...
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Understanding Sea Level Rise Impacts to Wetlands a...

The South Slough National Estuarine Research Reserve (Reserve) established Sentinel Sites in the reserve to understand the local effects of sea level rise on tidal wetland plant communities, including emergent ...
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Ocean Acidification Effects on the Eastern Oyster,...

This project evaluates effects of ocean acidification on three bivalve species of economic importance the eastern oyster, surf clams, and sea scallops. Through laboratory experiments and models, we will assess ...
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Climate and Anthropogenic Impacts on Critical Rese...

The Chesapeake Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve in Virginia (CBNERRVA; www.vims.edu/cbnerr) is engaged in understanding the vulnerability of critical emergent wetland habitats and submerged aquatic vegetation within the York River ...
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NCCOS delivers ecosystem science solutions for stewardship of the nation’s ocean and coastal resources to sustain thriving coastal communities and economies.

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