Hazards and Resilience and Climate Change

Research, education hub on ‘coastal resiliency’ will focus on earthquakes, coastal erosion and climate change

September 7, 2021

The National Science Foundation has funded a multi-institutional team including Washington Sea Grant to work on increasing resiliency among Pacific Northwest coastal communities.

Led by Oregon State University and the University of Washington, the new Cascadia Coastlines and Peoples Hazards Research Hub, or Cascadia CoPes Hub, will serve coastal communities in Northern California, Oregon and Washington. The hub’s multidisciplinary approach will span geoscience, social science, public policy and community partnerships.

The Pacific Northwest coastline is at significant risk ...

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Impacts from the Summer 2021 Heatwave on Washington Shellfish

July 21, 2021

The record-breaking heat that hit the Pacific Northwest from June 23 to 28, 2021, caused harm to many intertidal shellfish and invertebrate species on Washington beaches.

On many beaches, species such as cockles, varnish clams, butter clams, and native littleneck clams—normally buried out of sight—popped to the surface of the substrate in large numbers. Manila clams were also impacted in some areas. Surfaced clams were observed to be gaping, a sign of stress, or had already died from the ...

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Could a Tsunami Hit Puget Sound?

New tsunami hazard maps show how a Cascadia megaquake could impact Puget Sound

June 22, 2021
By Kathleen McKeegan, WSG Science Communications Fellow 

It’s not a matter of if, but when. New tsunami hazard maps published by the Washington Geological Survey and the Washington State Department of Natural Resources (DNR) show that a large earthquake on the Cascadia subduction zone (CSZ) off ...

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New Video: Swinomish Community Visits a Clam Garden

April 28, 2021

“Our coast Salish people had methods of cultivating the natural environment to support the ecosystems but also to feed the people,” says Alana Quintasket, senator for the Swinomish Indian Tribal Community. “And a clam garden is one example of that.” However, clam gardens have been dormant for hundreds of years in many of places that they used to exist. The Swinomish Indian Tribal Community is currently working toward reviving the ancient mariculture practice in modern-day Washington.

Not only does this ...

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Planet Ocean Teaches Middle Grade Readers How to Speak Up For The Sea

March 31, 2021

We are thrilled to announce the release of Planet Ocean, a nonfiction book for middle-grade readers (ages 8 and up) written with an underwater perspective about how climate change and pollution affect the sustainability of our sea. In addition to some cool science, Planet Ocean readers discover our unbreakable connection to the sea. Writer Patricia Newman and diver/photographer Annie Crawley give voice to stories from inspirational scientists, Indigenous peoples, and kids and teens impacted by ocean changes and working to combat them.

Meg Chadsey, ...

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The Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami and the Legacy in Washington 10 Years Later

March 11, 2021

By Carrie Garrison-Laney, WSG Tsunami Hazards Specialist and PMEL Liaison

On March 11, 2011 the largest earthquake ever recorded in Japan — the 4th largest ever recorded worldwide — and the resulting tsunami devastated coastal areas of Aomori, Iwate, Miyagi, Sendai, and Fukushima in eastern Japan. The tsunami attained a maximum height of 133 feet (40 meters) — the height of a 12-story building. Some communities were completely washed away. The tsunami also caused a nuclear accident at Fukushima Daiichi when ...

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Cruisin’ the Fossil Coastline Virtual Opening Celebration

January 12, 2020

In case you missed it, here’s the recording for Cruisin’ the Fossil Coastline Virtual Opening Celebration from the Burke Museum, a special exhibit opening sponsored by Washington Sea Grant. Learn how artist Ray Troll and curator Dr. Kirk Johnson created a lifelong friendship and partnership that over the past decades has led to a brand new exhibit on view at the Burke Museum.

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Reimagining Our Future Shorelines

The Washington Coastal Resilience Project will continue to help communities prepare for shoreline hazards for years to come  

By MaryAnn Wagner

Owen Beach, located in Point Defiance Park, is a popular area for many communities in Tacoma, providing beach access for boaters, swimmers and kayakers, and a space for public events. A few years ago, city planners ...

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New Video: King Tides Are Here

December 14, 2020

In a typical year, we would invite the public to join us at a king tides viewing party this week to learn about the highest tides of the year, and what they can teach us about sea level rise. We all know that this is not a typical year. Instead, we invite you to learn about king tides from Bridget Trosin, WSG coastal policy specialist, in the video below.

Learn more and see the calendar of when king tides ...

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Washington Sea Grant Received Four Grants from the Habitat Strategic Initiative in 2020

December 10, 2020

WSG awarded grants for Green Shores for Homes, Sea Level Rise Exposure, Shoreline Monitoring Toolbox, and Green Crab Projects for a total of $1.15 million. 

The National Estuary Program (NEP) is a place-based initiative to protect and restore the water quality and ecological integrity of estuaries of national significance. Earlier this year, the Puget Sound NEP Habitat Strategic Initiative Read More

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New Report: Puget Sound Marine Waters See Effect of Climate Change in 2019

December 9, 2020

Post shared from Puget Sound Partnership:

A new report details the effects of a changing climate on Puget Sound in 2019, and documents how these changes moved through the ecosystem to affect marine life and seafood consumers.

Scientists observed unusually warm water temperatures in 2019, though not as warm as during the years of “the Blob” marine heatwave of 2014-2016. Salinity was generally higher than normal throughout the Puget ...

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Head Outdoors This Holiday Season to Witness King Tides and Help Build a Picture of the Future

November 23, 2020 

The MyCoast app allows you to instantly share photos of the season’s biggest tides

King tides, the annual extreme-high tides that occur whenever the moon is closest to Earth, are a dramatic feature of Washington winters – and offer a glimpse of what our future in Western Washington may look like as sea levels rise. This holiday season provides a great opportunity for people to capture these extreme tides and help scientists assemble a preview of shorelines to come. ...

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