Hundreds share information about coastal issues, resources

By: Melissa Schneider / Published: Nov 15,  2008

More than 400 people attended the Mississippi-Alabama Bays and Bayous Symposium on Oct. 28-29 at the Mississippi Coast Coliseum and Convention Center in Biloxi to share information about coastal resources, natural hazards, fish stocks, water quality, land-use, education and community action programs.

People from 10 states and 128 affiliations attended two days of presentations. More than 150 presenters shared their research and case studies with scientists, extension agents, community activists and educators. Some topic covered included hurricane intensity scales, oyster reef and marsh grass restoration efforts, engineering principles for living shorelines, population trends of sea life and issues related to hypoxia (which causes dead zones and jubilees).

Keynote speakers included Steve Murawski, director of scientific programs and chief science advisor for NOAA Fisheries, and Virginia Burkett, chief scientist for global change research for the U.S. Geological Survey.

For the first time, the symposium included sessions about educating students and the public about marine sciences and highlighting innovative community efforts that benefit coastal ecosystems.

The Bays and Bayous Symposium was sponsored by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Mississippi-Alabama Sea Grant Consortium, Chevron Pascagoula Refinery, Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources State Lands Division, Mobile Bay National Estuary Program, NOAA Coastal Services Center, Northern Gulf Institute, The Forum, Mississippi Department of Marine Resources, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Gulf of Mexico Program, NASA, Alabama State Port Authority and Volkert & Associates, Inc.


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