Washington ChaptersDedicated to the protection and enjoyment of Washington's ocean, waves and beaches - More Details
|Photo credit: Tyna McNair|
All this talk about Marine Spatial Planning can be a bit confusing, especially for those of us who do not spend our time tackling legislative issues. The truth is that the entire process of Marine Spatial Planning is really about the people living near and using the ocean, first and foremost. Understanding how Marine Spatial Planning relates specifically to you and your recreational enjoyment is vital to the process.
Access to Recreational Areas
With a coastline of over 3,000 miles, Washington has a plethora of coastal areas to enjoy. Despite its apparent abundance, continued development of the coast has limited public access to our coastal areas and beaches. This includes public resources that we have a right to access. This is one reason to take part in Marine Spatial Planning-to help keep industry out of our important recreational areas. Various commercial activities like oil drilling, coal transport, or energy exploration pose threats to the waves and waters we value for their recreational opportunities like surfing and kayaking. Anticipating and planning for changes in coastal commercial activity is vital for areas with high recreational value. We can do this with Marine Spatial Planning.
Health of Recreational Areas
Keeping our recreational areas healthy is an important part of our experience outdoors. After all, we do not want our children to play in polluted water. Nor would we enjoy taking in a view of the beach inundated by plastic and other garbage. We value the areas where we recreate, and part of that means taking care of them properly and making sure that their value is properly accounted for in the Marine Spatial Planning process.
Enjoyment for All
The ocean provides us with many natural resources and provides a myriad of benefits for humans and animals alike. This is why we need to ensure that recreationalists are not priced out of areas and their hobbies-the oceans and beaches should be enjoyed by everyone. Surfrider was born from an innate love of the water, and part of our mission is to protect that resource for the enjoyment of all. Just because the coast has high economic value does not mean that only a subset of the population should enjoy it: the waves are for everyone.
Help with the Marine Spatial Planning process by understanding how it relates to you, and make sure to participate in the public commenting period (see previous post). Remember, this process aims to bring multiple stakeholders together to create solutions that work for us all. So help out the process and make sure that you are heard!
Do you love the beach? Who doesn’t, right? Well, now you can get involved in protecting your favorite beach by participating in the process of Marine Spatial Planning (MSP). If you use the beach and ocean for anything from family excursions to tow-in surfing, then we encourage you to speak up!
Washington State is seeking public comment on the recently released draft goals and objectives for MSP, which is the process of mapping uses and resources of the marine environment so that they can be intelligently managed and new uses can be evaluated with better information. In addition, a crucial part of MSP is involving stakeholders and the public in the process, and that’s why your input is so valuable.
This spring and early summer Washington SeaGrant convened local, state, and federal agency staff with members from the Washington Coastal Marine Advisory Council to develop goals and objectives that will guide decisions regarding MSP, resulting in the draft that is now open for public comment. MSP is currently focusing on the coastal waters of Washington, ranging from Ilwaco to Port Angeles and includes the estuaries, such as Willapa Bay and Grays Harbor, up to the tidal mean high water mark.
Coastal recreators should be interested in this process because it can offer better protection of the ocean and beaches that we use for walking, clamming, surfing, kayaking, bird watching, and escaping the hustle and bustle of modern life.
Please take time to read the draft goals and objectives for MSP and provide any comments. Your time investment will pay off in the future when your favorite beach is protected! You can find the draft (called the “scoping document”), and comment cards here: http://www.msp.wa.gov/public-comment-period-open-for-marine-spatial-plan/
In addition to any issues you find, we recommend making the following suggestions:
- Suggest adding this overarching goal: “Protect and preserve existing sustainable uses.”
- Convey how important protection and access to recreational areas are to coastal communities who economically benefit and to the general public as a whole whose quality of life is enhanced by playing outside.
- Emphasize the importance of protecting the marine ecosystem including important habitats, biodiversity, and ecological functions
Please email your comments to firstname.lastname@example.org by September 23, 2013. Your voice is very important in helping shape the future of our valuable coastline. Now is your chance to be heard!
More information about MSP can be found here: http://www.msp.wa.gov/ and http://surfriderwashingtoncoast.blogspot.com/p/marine-spatial-planning_5.html
Hey there friends, the day has come where we have a central hub of information in WA to best distribute information about the various chapter activities. This will serve us well to share info, events, and bring all of us a little closer together and more in-tune with each others work and efforts. So big cheers and send any questions, advice, or general inquiries or notions of shenanigans to Brice.
Photo credit: Tal Vick
Some kids were more hesitant than others…
Photo credit: Tyna Mcnair
But some were ready to stand up!
Photo credit: Tyna Mcnair
Check out what Warm Current is doing on the West Coast and how you can join in the fun at an upcoming event on the WA Coast at:
Governor Jay Inslee signs legislation to establish the Washington Coastal Marine Advisory Council under the executive office of the governor
The ocean is a tremendously busy place, and as it gets busier, managing the resources and uses of the ocean will become more and more complex. Marine Spatial Planning (MSP) is a process of mapping those uses in order to provide planners and decision makers the information they need to make wise decisions when managing resources or considering new uses.
More information about MSP can be found here:
This month, coastal Marine Resource Committees (MRCs) will be hosting a series of workshops to educate the public and solicit feedback regarding MSP. This is a tremendous opportunity for coastal communities to get a better understanding of MSP, and also to meet members of their respective MRCs.
If you have any interest in MSP, or just want to meet your local MRC, please attend one of these workshops, and spread the word to others who may be interested. Snacks and beverages will be provided.
Here are the times and locations:
Tuesday, April 9th – 6:00 – 7:30
Willapa Harbor Community Center
916 West First Street, South Bend, WA
Wednesday, April 10th – 6:00 -7:30
Ilwaco Community Building
158 First Avenue North, Ilwaco, WA
Grays Harbor County
Tuesday, April 16th – 5:30 -7:30
Rotary Log Pavilion
1401 Sargent Blvd, Aberdeen, WA
North Coast Counties
Thursday, April 18th – 5:30 – 7:30
Olympic Natural Resource Center
1455 S. Forks Avenue, Forks, WA
Monday, April 22nd – 5:00 – 7:00
4188 W SR4, Rosburg, WA