Wednesday, August 9, 2017: 8:00 AM-11:30 AM
Portland Blrm 256, Oregon Convention Center
Ariana Sutton-Grier, University of Maryland and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Britta Baechler, Portland State University
Coastal ecosystems are both some of the most beloved ecosystems by people for recreation, vacation, and coastal living, but also some of the most threatened by human use and development. Therefore, it is critical to understand the connections between coastal biodiversity, material cycling, coastal ecosystem functioning, and the ability of these ecosystems to provide the ecosystem services on which people depend including: commercial and recreational fishery habitat, water quality improvements, shoreline protection (climate adaptation), climate mitigation (carbon sequestration), and recreational uses. In order to understand the linkages between ecosystems and the benefits they provide to people, it is important to take a multidisciplinary approach that includes social and natural scientists. This session will present new advances about the coastal ecological functions and processes that provide these benefits to people, the valuation of these ecosystem services, and some of the current or emerging opportunities to include these benefits in policy and decision making that could result in more coastal ecosystem protection and/or restoration and help to make coastal communities more resilient in the face of climate change.