Resilient Communities and Economies

Maine’s coastal communities were founded on natural resources, from fish and shellfish to granite, salt, and a tradition of building wooden ships that connected the extensive forests of inland Maine to the coast. Where these communities continue to depend on marine resources, demographic, economic, political, and environmental changes often manifest as user conflicts, increase demand on the coastal environment, and have the potential to erode Maine’s natural and cultural heritage. Only 20 of Maine’s 3,500 miles of coastline support water-dependent industries. The majority of commercial access points are privately owned and vulnerable to conversion to residential and other private uses.

Maine Sea Grant is helping Maine’s coastal communities preserve and celebrate their fisheries heritage, waterfront assets, and related economic activity, while becoming more resilient to challenges and changes. Our work helps communities gather and use the skills, knowledge, and resources they need to plan for, cope with, and thrive in the face of both predicted and unexpected ecological, social, economic, and demographic changes. Resilience also requires a sustainable energy future, and Maine Sea Grant is supporting research and outreach at the forefront of the emerging tidal and offshore wind energy sector.

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