Championing the Well-Being of Sarasota Bay
We are a partner in helping to conserve the ecological well-being of the Sarasota Bay estuary. Our priority is working for solutions that will help Sarasota Bay and its surrounding communities adapt to climate change, create resiliency in shorelines and maintain and create habitat. We focus our efforts on climate change education, advocacy, and promoting adaptation strategies such as living shorelines and living seawalls.
We offer education to neighborhood groups and civic organizations on climate change and adaptation and what coastal residents can do in their own back yards to create more resilient and habitat-friendly shorelines. We have done presentations to the Sarasota Yacht Club, to residents of Lakewood Ranch and other communities. Please contact us is you are interested in learning more.
Additionally, Jack Merriam conducts a class Climate Change: Local Impacts and Local Adaptation. What are climate change predictors - those that affect our natural and man-made environment? This course discusses how climate change and bay-level rise are impacting our area and what we can expect in the future. Each week, a different topic will be examined including storm surge implications, pollution sources, biological indicators (seagrass, red tide, fish, mangroves, and other living shorelines), local economics, and adaptation techniques. New classes will be coming up in the Fall of 2019.
Mapping opportunities for use of living shorelines in Sarasota Bay
We have developed a research project that will assess the opportunities in Sarasota Bay waterfront communities for implementing living shorelines or living seawalls.
Specific objectives are:
1. Build a spatial suitability model that identifies priority areas for living-shoreline strategies along Sarasota Bay
2. Model the ecosystem services associated with living-shoreline strategies
3. Evaluate the social, economic, and policy opportunities and tradeoffs in implementing living shoreline strategies
We are currently seeking funding to implement this project. If you are interested in knowing more or can help to locate funding, please contact us.
Supporting community action
We partner with other local environmental groups to advocate for wise decision-making on issues that will impact the Sarasota Bay estuary, such as major development projects and shoreline and habitat enhancement
The Sarasota Bay Foundation parterned with Mote Marine Laboratory's Fisheries Forum Subcommittee on Coastal Restoration, Sarasota County's Neighborhood Environmental Stewardship Team (NEST), University of Florida Sea Grant, and START - Solutions to Avoid Red Tide, to do an enhancement of Indian Beach Park that includes shoreline plantings to provide habitat and resilience. This project was completed February 17, 2019.
If you would like more information on what you can do to protect the bay and its watersheds, please contact us.