Fall 2014

Campus Receives Grants to Study North Coast Marine Ecosystem

THE CALIFORNIA OCEAN Science Trust has awarded 10 grants totaling $4 million to state and local agencies for marine research on the North Coast, including Humboldt State University.

Students and faculty from a variety of disciplines are part of a statewide effort to study marine protected areas on the North Coast.

The grants are part of the North Coast Marine Protected Area (MPA) Baseline Program, which supports the collection of ecological and socioeconomic information on beaches, reefs and ecosystems on the North Coast. Principal investigators on seven of the 10 projects are HSU faculty members, and several other faculty members will contribute in key investigator roles. Numerous HSU students are also involved.

“Our goal is to protect these areas, and maintain populations of commercially popular fish so that fisheries can remain open,” said Zoology Professor Sean Craig, a recipient of one of the grants.

The goal of the MPA program is to establish benchmarks for measuring the performance of the region’s new marine protected areas from an ecological and socioeconomic perspective. California Sea Grant administers the program with MPA Monitoring Enterprise, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, and the California Ocean Protection Council.