In 2015, the National Sea Grant Law Center received a grant award from the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation’s Fishing for Energy Partnership. The project, “Increasing Awareness of the Legal Framework Governing Removal of Marine Debris and Placement of Fishing Gear in the New England Region” aims to help New England managers assess the feasibility of implementing innovative derelict fishing gear removal strategies in their states. The NSGLC also partnered with the Rhode Island Sea Grant Legal Program (RISGLP) at the Roger Williams University School of Law to perform research on vessel navigation laws and restrictions on the placement of commercial fishing gear within shipping and boating lanes.
The Agricultural & Food Law Consortium is a national, multi-institutional collaboration designed to enhance and expand the development and delivery of authoritative, timely, and objective agricultural and food law research and information. This information is available to the nation’s vast agricultural community of producers, attorneys, state and federal policymakers, Cooperative Extension Service professionals, and others at the local, state, regional, and national levels. Agricultural law and food law includes law related to land-based food, fiber, and energy production systems, as well as seafood and marine-based aquaculture. The National Sea Grant Law Center is one of four founding members of the Consortium and contributes expertise on a range of topics including, aquaculture, fisheries, and water quality and quantity.
Sea Grant programs and their staffs face the daunting task of remaining neutral while working on some of our coastal communities’ most challenging environmental, economic, and social issues. In 2011, the Sea Grant Extension Assembly asked the National Sea Grant Law Center for assistance in developing materials to help the Sea Grant network navigate complex advocacy issues. Since then, in partnership with Jim Fawcett of the USC Sea Grant Program, Stephanie Otts of the NSGLC has worked to facilitate the advocacy conversation and expand professional development opportunities.
The “Legal Guide for Direct Marketing Aquaculture Products in Alabama” is a project of the National Sea Grant Law Center and the National Agricultural Law Center funded by the Southern Risk Management Education Center and the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture. The project is intended to assist aquaculture producers seeking to diversify their businesses through direct marketing. The project will result in a guide, workshop, webinars, and a webpage, all of which are designed to provide aquaculture producers with basic information about the federal, state, and local legal requirements of select direct marketing strategies.
“Building Consensus in the West,” is an initiative of the Western Regional Panel on Aquatic Nuisance Species. The goal of the WRP initiative is to develop a multi-state vision for watercraft inspection and decontamination (WID) programs. The National Sea Grant Law Center is an active participant in this initiative, providing legal research support and leading efforts to develop model legislation and regulations for WID Programs.
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In 2010, the National Sea Grant Law Center and six other partner institutions received funding from the Economic Development Administration to develop a Sustainable Working Waterfronts Toolkit. The Sustainable Working Waterfronts Toolkit is a web-based information portal that contains a wealth of information about the historical and current use of waterfront space, the economic value of working waterfronts, and legal, policy, and financing tools that can be used to preserve, enhance, and protect these valuable areas. The Toolkit also features case studies of successful working waterfronts initiatives from communities around the country. To access the Toolkit, please visit the National Working Waterfront Network’s website at www.wateraccessus.com.
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