WE Provide What Leaders Need


Strategies to restore estuary health

Sustainable fisheries management frameworks

Assessment of marine habitat protection alternatives


What's at Stake


Oceans and natural coastal areas are remarkably beneficial to humans – providing fisheries for food supply, supporting livelihoods through coastal recreation and economic activity around ports, stabilizing our climate by sequestering and storing carbon, and buffering communities from storms and disasters. But risks to oceans and coastal areas are growing. Ocean acidification and nutrient pollution impact shellfish populations. Warmer water temperatures have damaged coral reefs, causing recreation and tourism to falter. Population growth is driving development pressure along shorelines as people seek beautiful places to live and recreate. There is an ongoing battle between preserving nature’s storm mitigation capabilities and maintaining people’s property values and development rights. Our marine work focuses on the complex interface between the natural marine environment and local communities by identifying oceans’ and coastal areas’ contributions to local communities and the economy.

Photo Credit: MinJae Kim via Flickr

Photo Credit: MinJae Kim via Flickr

Our Approach


Supporting Coastal Restoration

Coastal areas are a key interface between people and the environment. When intact, they are remarkably effective at protecting land and communities from hurricane winds, storm surge, and other hazards. Dunes, wetlands, mangrove forests, and other natural features all provide protection. We work to build an understanding of these critical areas and provide communities with options for funding coastal restoration.


Informing Management Policy for Oceans and Coastal Areas

We use systems analysis of policies and projects to identify opportunities to protect and preserve natural marine environments while balancing economic and social outcomes. From informing shoreline master planning processes to helping communities justify Marine Protected Area designations, we provide information that helps communities make the best decisions regarding their marine assets. As we build sustainable outcomes for local communities, we leverage these examples to inform regional and national policy and effect change at scale.


Photo Credit: finchlake2000 via Flickr

Photo Credit: finchlake2000 via Flickr