MARES to provide comprehensive view of south Florida marine ecosystems

December 21, 2009

Miami, Fla. -- Marine and Estuarine Goal Setting for South Florida (MARES) is a new collaborative initiative, funded by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), designed to guide regional resource managers in protecting the fragile marine coastal environment in South Florida. Through MARES academic scientists, federal and state agency experts and non-governmental organizations will work closely with federal and state environmental managers, private industry and the general public to develop comprehensive ecosystem models and reach consensus as to feasible management goals for the South Florida coastal ecosystem from Charlotte Harbor south to the Florida Keys and Dry Tortugas and the lower East Coast up to the St. Lucie. The three-year study will also develop an annual report card (Total Marine Ecosystem Assessment Report) that allows resource managers to evaluate their management strategies to adequately protect the local ecosystem.

"Here in South Florida we have a unique subtropical environment - we are home to the only coral reefs in the continental United States, most of our population lives along the coast and our economy hinges on the protection of our marine environment," said Dr. Peter Ortner, professor of biological oceanography at the University of Miami and director of the Cooperative Institute for Marine and Atmospheric Studies (CIMAS). "Human society is part of the larger ecosystem. A unique feature of MARES is the specific consideration of societal processes through the inclusion of human dimensions science, to study what is taking place within the ecosystem and how we are impacting its sustainability."

Input from agencies and the community will be gathered during a series of public meetings leading to a "Total Marine Ecosystem Assessment Report". The first in a series of technical workshops to develop the groundwork for the report is scheduled to take place in Miami, December 9 and 10, 2009 at FIU's MARC Pavillion. Additional information for public meetings throughout the region will be publicized as they are scheduled.

MARES builds upon NOAA's 15 year commitment to improve the understanding of the South Florida coastal ecosystem and associated changes resulting from Everglades Restoration activities. The outcomes from MARES will be used to focus and prioritize future research and management of South Florida coastal waters for NOAA and the other federal and state agencies.

"This is the first time a "Total Marine System" analysis will be developed as a resource management tool", said Joseph Boyer, Director of the Southeast Environmental Research Center at Florida International University. "The results of this effort will also assist South Florida Ecosystem Restoration Task Force managers in 'defining success' with respect to Everglades Restoration."
CIMAS is a research institute of the University of Miami located within the Rosenstiel School for Marine and Atmospheric Science. Since 1977, CIMAS has been sponsored jointly by the University of Miami and NOAA, through its Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research and National Marine Fisheries Service. It is one of thirteen such Institutes nationwide, and serves as a mechanism to create synergy between University scientists and those in NOAA in order to develop a better understanding of the Earth's ocean-atmosphere-land dynamics.

More information on MARES can be obtained by visiting

University of Miami Rosenstiel School of Marine & Atmospheric Science

Related Ecosystem Articles from Brightsurf:

Breast cancer 'ecosystem' reveals possible new targets for treatment
Garvan researchers have used cellular genomics to uncover promising therapy targets for triple negative breast cancer.

Unparalleled inventory of the human gut ecosystem
Scientists gathered and published over 200 000 genomes from the human gut microbiome.

Cycad plants provide an important 'ecosystem service'
A study published in the June 2020 edition of the peer-reviewed journal Horticulturae shows that cycads, which are in decline and among the world's most threatened group of plants, provide an important service to their neighboring organisms.

More ecosystem engineers create stability, preventing extinctions
Biological builders like beavers, elephants, and shipworms re-engineer their environments.

Ecosystem degradation could raise risk of pandemics
Environmental destruction may make pandemics more likely and less manageable, new research suggests.

Improving the operation and performance of Wi-Fi networks for the 5G/6G ecosystem
An article published in the advanced online edition of the journal Computer Communications shows that the use of machine learning can improve the operation and performance of the Wi-Fi networks of the future, those of the 5G/6G ecosystem.

A lost world and extinct ecosystem
The field study site of Pinnacle Point, South Africa, sits at the center of the earliest evidence for symbolic behavior, complex pyrotechnology, projectile weapons, and the first use of foods from the sea, both geographically and scientifically, having contributed much on the evolutionary road to being a modern human.

Ecosystem services are not constrained by borders
What do chocolate, migratory birds, flood control and pandas have in common?

Late cretaceous dinosaur-dominated ecosystem
A topic of considerable interest to paleontologists is how dinosaur-dominated ecosystems were structured, how dinosaurs and co-occurring animals were distributed across the landscape, how they interacted with one another, and how these systems compared to ecosystems today.

How transient invaders can transform an ecosystem
Study finds microbes can alter an environment dramatically before dying out.

Read More: Ecosystem News and Ecosystem Current Events is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to