Showing posts from April, 2016

Negotiating beach nourishment benefits and costs

Jonathan Bingham is working on his Master of Science degree in Coastal and Ocean Policy at the University of North Carolina Wilmington, where he also received his Bachelor of Science in Environmental Sciences.   He has lived in Wilmington for almost a decade. Jonathan began his career project management branch at the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in Wilmington, NC, and quickly became involved in Federal navigation, coastal storm damage reduction, and environmental restoration projects across coastal North Carolina. His background and experience, in the sciences and involvement in complex policies and politics, ignited his interest in the coastal policy field. 
Beaches – many parties have an interest in them.  Beachfront homeowners, the summertime tourist, businesses that make a living from beachgoers, outdoorsy folks, tax collectors, and even those people who bike to the beach because they’d rather not fight for parking (especially this guy right here). 
Since the 1960s, our NC beach tow…

National Flood Insurance Program and Land Management

Hayley Wise will graduate from the Masters of Coastal and Ocean Policy program this Spring 2016.  She comes to her capstone project with experience in private insurance and administration of the federal government's National Flood Insurance Program. 

The National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) was introduced in 1968 after the private market failed to carry the risk associated with floods. In addition to offering affordable premiums, the NFIP was tasked with encouraging sound land use, minimizing flood losses, and guiding development away from locations threatened by flood hazards. The latter of the two is where the NFIP fails. The NFIP has become a driver in unsustainable coastal development. 
With 52% of the United States population living in a coastal county the demand for coastal development is high. Developers want to make money, and people want to live near the beach. It has caused poor decision-making, which puts property and life in danger. The NFIP uses subsidized rates to…

Southern Flounder: Fish, family and uncertainty

Shelby White is a graduate student in the Masters of Coastal and Ocean Policy Program at the University of North Carolina Wilmington. As a part of the commercial fishing industry in NC, she has witnessed first-hand the issues occurring between commercial and recreational user groups. Shelby's research focuses on the socio-economics of commercial fishermen in the Albemarle Sound, providing insight into how recent southern flounder regulations will impact the commercial fishing industry in the area. 

Historical accounts of eastern North Carolina often begin with tales of Algonquin tribes settling along the bountiful coastline and relying on the water as a means of survival. Using primitive tools to harvest species such as shad, striped bass, and herring, the Algonquin tribes and their discovery of North Carolina’s invaluable water resources paved the dreary road for what has become fisheries management.
The term “fisheries management” sounds relatively simple. Professionals and scient…

Hurricane Stats: Recent changes to 1969 Hurricane Camille

NOAA maintains North Atlantic tropical cyclone data and history in a catalogue known as HURDAT.  For a while now, scientists have reanalyzed data in the catalog in consideration of a wide range of historical information and scientific advancements to improve data quality and completeness.  
Such reanalysis projects often result in changes to a storm's "Best Track," the authoritative scientific agreement of where the storm traveled and its characteristics along the way.  These updates may change the historical or scientific significance of a storm.  For instance, reanalysis may result in a drop or increase in central pressure, an increase or decrease in storm winds, and thus the storm's Saffir-Simpson category and perceptions of the hurricane record.  
The Landsea et al (2004) reanalysis of the 1992 Hurricane Andrew provides a great example of this. 
Until the reanalysis took place, Andrew was on record as a Category 4 landfall.  Thus, between 1900 the time of public…

The Pointy End of Hook: Fisheries Policy and the Importance of At-Sea Enforcement

Eric Quigley is a graduate student in the Coastal and Ocean Policy Program at the University of North Carolina Wilmington.  He graduated from the U.S. Coast Guard Academy in 2006 with a BS in Management.  Currently, he is an active duty Officer in the U.S. Coast Guard with six years of at-sea experience aboard three ships enforcing Federal and multi-national laws and treaties including, leading approximately 120 fisheries enforcement vessel boardings in the Gulf of Mexico and Western and Central Pacific Ocean.

Illegal incursions in the United States Exclusive Economic Zones (EEZ) increased by 13% from 2014-2015.The increase reflects a general trend over recent years.The continued illegal, unreported or unregulated fishing in US waters have led the UN Food and Agricultural Organization and the US President to encourage development of new frameworks to improve effective management these resources.A common ethical perspective holds that despite the manner by which a fish is caught (legal …