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#SeaGrant50: Sustainable Coastal Tourism
By Paul F on Jul 7, 2016 at 11:40 AM

Linking Conservation, Culture, and Commerce

Tourism is ranked within the top three contributors to the economic growth and development of every state in the U.S. The unique natural settings and human-made attractions of coastal states, in particular, attract tens of millions of visitors annually to our nation’s coastlines. Tourism’s contribution to jobs, tax revenues, and local communities is undeniably significant.    

At the same time, the “footprints” of tourism are increasingly apparent. From energy and water consumption to degradation of coastal habitats to impacts on local cultural traditions, the visitor industry is recognized as a key sector to achieving the long-term sustainability of America’s coasts.

Sea Grant programs nationwide continue to address coastal tourism and associated effects on coastal residents and environments. Sea Grant works with coastal communities, the visitor industry, and other stakeholders to foster sustainable coastal development while seeking preservation of our natural capital and maritime and cultural heritage.As illustrated in a new fact sheet (pdf) created in recognition of its 50th anniversary, Sea Grant is the “go-to” organization nation-wide for science-based information and community outreach related to all aspects of coastal tourism

One prime example of this at New York Sea Grant is the program's clean marinas and Great Lakes shipwreck education efforts.

Since 2008, NYSG has educated over 650,000 boaters on how to be environmentally-friendly, safe and legal on the state's waters with its "Discover Clean and Safe Boating" exhibit. The informative panels and maps of our "Great Shipwrecks of NY¹s 'Great' Lakes" traveling exhibit, which has made over a half-dozen stops in three years, has reaches over 750,000 people total in New York, Pennsylvania and Vermont. More at,

There are many video clips on the topic, so click through our YouTube playlist on "Coastal Economies and Businesses" ...

You can also view the individual videos in this playlist via NYSG's YouTube channel.

Here are some of NYSG's other recent related impact statements:

NYSG Launches Maritime History Exhibit Multi-State Tour (pdf)
New York Sea Grant worked with multiple partners to develop a traveling exhibit creating excitement about New York’s freshwater maritime history, underwater science and exploration, and waterfront destinations.

Suddenly-In-Command Education Focused on Safety (pdf)
In 2015, the award-winning New York Sea Grant’s Discover Clean & Safe Boating campaign added a Suddenly-In-Command introduction, taught in cooperation with the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary, on how to assess an emergency situation, stabilize a recreational vessel, summon assistance, and potentially pilot the boat to shore. According to the 2013 NYS Recreational Boating Report 63 percent of boating emergencies occur while cruising or drifting on the water.

Train-the-Trainer Approach Advances Watercraft Stewardship (pdf)
To enhance standardization of watercraft inspection programs statewide, New York Sea Grant published the New York State Watercraft Inspection Steward Program Handbook in 2014 and used it in workshops for new and existing program leaders in 2015. Partners include representatives of the Adirondacks, Buffalo-Niagara, Catskills, Finger Lakes, Lake Champlain, Western NY, and inland lakes and waters statewide.

Watercraft Inspection Program Webinar Series Now Online (pdf)
In 2015, NYSG debuted a six-part webinar series on the logistics of starting a new watercraft inspection program and on standardizing existing programs to enhance efforts to slow and stop the spread of aquatic invasive species. Nearly half of the participants in the series, posted at, are interested in developing new watercraft inspection programs.

NYSG Assists Marinas in Sandy Recovery Efforts (pdf)
New York Sea Grant is working with State officials, including the Governor’s Office of Storm Recovery (GOSR), and the marina industry to help businesses access needed funding and information resources for recovery from Superstorm Sandy. According to GOSR, marine-based businesses accounted for 25 percent of the total value of grants awarded to all business sectors by the NY Rising Small Business Recovery Program.

Working with Sport Fishing Businesses to Build a Vision for Growth (pdf)
New York Sea Grant and sport fishing businesses are developing a vision for economic resiliency focused in the Long Island region. A three-tier strategic plan outline developed in 2015 identifies crucial needs for action and monetary investment focused on media and promotion, grassroots engagement, and improvements in conservation and data collection.


More Info: #SeaGrant50 and

#SeaGrant50 ...

More information on the 50th anniversary campaign via the National Sea Grant College Program (NSGCP), which includes a "50th Stories" sub-page. The NSGCP will gather and share related content from the individual 33 Sea Grant programs on social media via its social media channels using the hashtag #SeaGrant50:


On ...


Tags: #SeaGrant50
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