Recommendations to Local and State Leaders from the Joint Ocean Commission Initiativehttp://www.jointoceancommission.org
Last week the Joint Ocean Commission released a report highlighting actions that need to be taken to protect and restore our nation's coast and ocean. The report highlights Ventura as one of the west coast communities actively working to put integrated, ecosystem-based approaches into practice in the management of ocean and coastal resources they depend on for high quality of life and a vibrant coastal economy. This is the result of the Ventura Chapter of the Surfrider Foundation's work on Surfers' Point, Matilija Dam, and stormwater and watershed management.
The report presents the Joint Initiative’s recommendations for actions local and state elected leaders can take to improve the health of coastal ecosystems and economies. The recommendations focus on:
- Actions local leaders can take to implement an integrated, ecosystem-based approach
- Actions state legislatures can take to support local communities in this effort
- Ways both local and state leaders can begin to address coastal climate change impacts
- Strategies coastal communities and state legislatures can employ to ensure the resources needed to implement the recommendations are available
- On-the-ground examples of how local and state governments on the West Coast are already making progress toward an integrated, ecosystem-based approach
The Ventura Ecosystem-based management project was highlighted in this month's Making Waves, the Surfrider Foundation's publication. The article is posted on the blog here
Local press: Report urges cooperation to protect coastal zones
Letter to the editor highlighting our progress:
Cooperation under way
January 16, 2009
Re: your Jan. 15 article, "Report urges cooperation to protect coastal
This article about the Joint Ocean Commission Initiative report, "One Coast, One Future," correctly highlights fragmented governance as one of the primary threats to our coasts and ocean.
This report also highlights Ventura as one of the West Coast communities actively working to put integrated, ecosystem-based approaches into practice in the management of ocean and coastal resources they depend on for high quality of life and a vibrant coastal economy.
In early 2008, the Ventura chapter of the Surfrider Foundation published, "Solving the Urban Runoff Problem - A Vision for the City of Ventura." In this document, we outlined a strategy for retrofit of the storm drain infrastructure in Ventura to improve coastal water quality and make better use of our limited rainfall. In July, the city of Ventura passed a "green streets" ordinance as a first step in implementing this plan. This is one part of the Surfrider Foundation's
integrated strategy for the restoration of the Ventura River watershed, which also includes beach restoration at Surfers' Point and removal of Matilija Dam.
Each of these projects requires coordinating the multiple jurisdictions of local, state and federal government agencies and engaging the affected communities -- no easy task in a society with so
many competing interests. However, despite state budget woes, there is now a great opportunity to construct these "green infrastructure" projects with the federal economic stimulus package.
Restoring the function of our coastal ecosystems by implementing "ecosystem-based management" in Ventura will serve as a real world demonstration of the principles outlined in the Joint Ocean Commission report. Support for these projects is one way our elected officials
can provide critical leadership for securing the health of coastal ecosystems and economies.
More information on the Ventura ecosystem project may be found at http://venturaecosystem.blogspot.com/
-- Paul Jenkin, Ventura