Jun 12 2003

University of South Carolina Receives Grant to Study and Protect Coastal Environment

WASHINGTON -- U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) today announced the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has awarded the University of South Carolina Research Foundation a $555,000 grant to support the Coastal Zone Management Estuarine Research Reserves program. The money will be used to support the National Estuarine Research Reserves System (NERRS). The NERRS program helps to sustain healthy coasts by improving the nation's understanding and stewardship of estuaries. Nationally, there are 25 protected areas, two of which are located in South Carolina: the Ace Basin Reserve and the North Inlet/Winyah Bay Reserve. Each reserve is a ‘living laboratory’ in which scientists conduct research and educators communicate research results. Reserve staff members work with local communities and regional groups to address natural resource management issues, such as non-point source pollution, habitat restoration and invasive species. Through integrated research and education, the reserves help communities develop strategies to deal successfully with coastal resource issues. “South Carolina’s coast is one of our most valuable resources,” said Graham. “It is important that we protect its natural beauty, and support programs that conduct scientific research and increase public awareness.” ####