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Science for Coastal Ecosystem Management

Benthic Habitat Mapping at Majuro
We mapped many reef types around the Majuro atoll and matched them up with the colors and textures shown in satellite images, a process called “ground truthing.” Being physically present in the study area is an essential part of accurately mapping natural resources

Inadequate Planning in our Crowded Coastal Zone Puts our Future Health and Wealth at Risk.

We rely on our oceans for many things, from jobs to energy to food, but making decisions without seeing the whole picture can lead to conflicts and lost resources. We need to be able to balance the uses of the coastal zone so that traditional activities, such as shipping and fishing, can occur alongside new uses while the natural resources are protected and conserved.

Our Maps, Models, and Data Help Planners Understand What's at Stake.

To plan for the future, we need to know where things are - from coral reefs to the migratory paths of whales - and predict their future conditions. For over 20 years, our scientists have mapped and studied our nation's coastal and marine resources and conditions.

We work with coastal managers to provide them the information they need to make decisions that protect resources and support coastal economies and cultures.

NCCOS Coastal Ecosystem Management research is focused on the following subjects and programs.