Third Thursday Web Forum

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July 16th, 2015:  “Mapping the ocean: The value of marine assessments in conserving important resources” with Mary Conley, The Nature Conservancy

It is an important time for ocean management when new and expanding uses are placing additional pressure on our marine environments. Understanding where existing resources are located and what areas are being used is critical for informed decision-making that balances economic, social and environmental needs. Marine Assessments can help by:

  • Providing access to new spatial resources layers that can be used to make ocean management decisions
  • Visualizing areas for conservation and identifying new areas that share features with known areas of importance
  • Creating shared priorities for conservation that can be used by multiple agencies and partners
  • Communicating data gaps to inform future research needs, such as exploration of coral habitats in the deep water canyons

With support from the South Atlantic Landscape Conservation Cooperative, The Nature Conservancy has developed the South Atlantic Bight Marine Assessment (SABMA), extending from Cape Charles, VA to the Florida Keys. This assessment utilized existing data sources to create regional spatial data layers of seafloor habitats, coastal ecosystems and migratory species. Our presentation will provide an overview of the project, highlighting some of the primary analyses, mapping products and identified data gaps.

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Access recording and archived presentation:

PDF of presentation

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