New $300K federal grant funded

Published Jul. 11, 2018

Thomas Soniat, Associate Director of the Canizaro/Livingston Gulf States Center for Environmental Informatics, has been awarded almost $300,000 from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Marine Fisheries Service Saltonstall/Kennedy Program to lead a collaborative effort that will apply a model for determining sustainable harvest of oysters across the Gulf of Mexico. The team will be co-led by professor Eric N. Powell from the University of Southern Mississippi’s Department of Coastal Sciences and includes representatives from state wildlife and fisheries agencies in Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and Florida, as well as seafood industry partners from those states. The team will focus on managing oyster habitat in the face of environmental impacts and climate change. The project brings together academic scientists, state regulators and industry leaders from the Gulf States to ensure that oyster reef quality is maintained and enhanced, and that oyster populations are sustainably fished.