In the Great Lakes region, Sea Grant scientists research invasive species in freshwater such as lamprey or zebra mussels, while in Maine, extension agents assist fishermen in their occupational transition from lobster trapping to seaweed aquaculture. Hawaii Sea Grant, meanwhile, has a feasibility study in the works to assess the potential for sea water air conditioning systems in the tourism district of Waikiki.
Each of Sea Grant’s 33 programs focuses on coastal or marine resource challenges specific to the region, with various governance structures in place—such as advisory boards or stakeholder meetings—helping to define or anticipate those challenges. In this way, each research and extension center generates impactful, relevant data and activities for its surrounding communities.
On August 30, the University of Guam Sea Grant (UOGSG) program hosted its stakeholder listening session. Twenty-five attendees representing nonprofit, education, and government groups brainstormed ideas for potential research, outreach, and education opportunities.
“Being in alignment with community priorities in the ridge-to-reef environment is critical for UOGSG,” says Associate Director of Sea Grant, James Hollyer. “We are clear that UOGSG is only one partner in a vast network of organizations who care about the quality of the environment and life on Guam, and we appreciate the collegial way that meeting attendees contributed ideas that are of value for us all. It’s great being around people who care so passionately about Guam.”
At the five-hour session, participants shared their programs’ successes and identified on-going or future threats to natural resources on island. Attendees also generated ideas about products and activities that could in some way address those threats.
In straw votes generated by select session questions, meeting participants favored shoreline stabilization, green fee feasibility, and government conservation policies/implementation as potential topics for research. Attendees also recommended workshops or information targeting the public about drinking water, environmental regulations, and homeowner techniques for stormwater management and waste disposal.
UOGSG will use session notes to inform the drafting of UOGSG’s strategic plan, which undergoes revision every three to four years.
The notes and list is downloadable in PDF format at: http://cnas-re.uog.edu/uog-sea-grant/
The public can continue its engagement with Sea Grant-affiliated faculty and staff by suggesting or offering comments on the existing list. Email firstname.lastname@example.org.