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Changing Oceans Talk; Help Needed for Marine Debris Survey on Oregon Coast

Published 10/04/21 at 4:56 AM PDT
By Oregon Coast Beach Connection staff

Changing Oceans Talk; Help Needed for Marine Debris Survey on Oregon Coast

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(Warrenton, Oregon) – As Oregon Shores Conservation Coalition (OSCC) continues to celebrate its 50th anniversary year, more ways of learning about the beaches and helping them out appear. October 13 sees yet another talk on what's happening with our oceans and the group holds the first of many marine debris surveys at Fort Stevens, where it will need more volunteers. (Above: Fort Stevens State Park)

OSCC has been hosted numerous experts from around the U.S. giving online lectures that address the challenges of the next 50 years of Oregon coast conservation. The next one is a talk on the future of “Our Changing Oceans,” presented by marine ecologist Kristy Kroeker on Wednesday, Oct. 13, at 7 p.m. The online event is free and open to the public.

You'll find the registration link here.

Dr. Kroeker is an associate professor in the Ecology & Evolutionary Biology Department in the Institute of Marine Science at the University of California at Santa Cruz. She specializes in such areas of research as community ecology, species interactions, and global change biology. She and the other researchers in her lab focus on coastal sustainability, climate change, multiple stressors, social-ecological systems, and ocean policy and management.

She will discuss the ways in which the marine environment is changing now and it likely to continue changing in the future, with a particular emphasis on ocean acidification and its effects, and will contemplate the effects of these changes on ocean organisms.

For more information, contact Phillip Johnson, Oregon Shores' executive director, at (503) 754-9303, phillip@oregonshores.org.

OSCC is holding several marine debris surveys in the future, and one of the big spots is on the north Oregon coast at Fort Stevens State Park.

“More volunteers are needed to fill out the team, headed by Oregon Shores board member Ed Joyce, which handles the monthly survey at this site,” OSCC said. “We seek to organize a large enough team that some members can be there every month, without any one person having to be there each time.”

The same day as Kroeker's talk – Wednesday, October 13 – the group will host a shoreline marine debris education session at Fort Stevens for those members of the public who would like to help out. They will be training new volunteers as well.

This event begins at 10 a.m. and there will be an actual survey conducted.

All this assists experts in determining the answers to some important questions left by the debris itself. This includes looming unknowns such as what types of marine debris are the most common in any given area? How is this problem evolving, changing? And how effective are the methods for dealing with it? NOAA's Marine Debris Monitoring and Assessment Project (MDMAP) helps answer these questions and others by collecting baseline data. The data collected through this project can be used to evaluate the impacts of marine debris along our coastlines and can help inform future marine debris mitigation and prevention efforts on a local, regional, and national scale.

Everyone will meet at Parking Lot B, about three-quarters of a mile south of the Columbia on Jetty Rd. in Fort Stevens State Park.

This part of OSCC's programs is done under its hands-on beach volunteer arm, known as CoastWatch. Surveys are a monthly event so that consistent data is submitted. CoastWatch wishes to invite the public to join in these efforts, which will happen at other sites along the Oregon coast as well. See oregonshores.org for more.

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