Sanctuary Advisory Council Acknowledged for 2012 Accomplishments
At the Sanctuary Advisory Council's last meeting of 2012, sanctuary staff acknowledged the council's accomplishments throughout the year and thanked them for all that they do. Notable actions that the advisory council was recognized for include:
- Continuing to be a leading voice on and source of deep understanding about the importance of ocean acidification, helping to spur many spin-off accomplishments such as new public service announcements and communication workshops;
- Staying focused on and committed to finding ways to reduce the risk of whale ship strikes, including serving as a leading voice and source of knowledge that is now leading to the adjustment of shipping lanes within the Santa Barbara Channel;
- Expressly supporting sanctuary research, including backing the sanctuary research department and the Research Activity Panel's assessment of science needs and priorities, as well as a UC Santa Barbara Bren School socioeconomic research project;
- Launching a new MPA Science Speaker Series, which engaged everyone in learning about important new marine science happening in and around the sanctuary;
- Embracing high school youth involvement with the council by piloting a Youth Ocean Stewards program;
- Telling NOAA leadership how important the agency's Bay Watershed Education and Training (B-WET) program is, emphasizing the value of funding education and meaningful experiences for young students;
- As part of an ongoing commitment to help protect whales from ship strikes, writing a letter of support for the concept of an innovative incentive-based approach to reducing ship speeds by tapping into state greenhouse gas cap-and-trade auction funds;
- Establishing a new Marketing Subcommittee that is off to a great start, bringing in fresh and creative entrepreneurial ideas to expand support for the sanctuary and help sustain valuable programming; and
- Taking a broader and leading role in education and outreach when additional MPAs were established along the coast, specifically through the coordinating efforts of the Sanctuary Education Team as they brought together agencies, NGOs and other stakeholders to refine and align messaging.
Staff also acknowledged that the advisory council is a highly functioning group and enjoyable to work with, attributing their success to such factors as having:
- Creative and productive working groups;
- High participation by council members;
- A wealth of knowledge and experience;
- Dedicated leadership and close communications by the council's Executive Committee;
- Consistently strong public interest in joining the council when seats become open; and
- A willingness and ability to address difficult issues, reaching or trying to reach consensus in a manner that is respectful, civil, and a model of how advisory groups should work.
Sanctuary Classic Recreational Fishing Tournament Supported by Sanctuary Advisory Council
On November 16, 2012, the Sanctuary Advisory Council approved sending a letter to the Sportfishing Conservancy in support of the Sanctuary Classic recreational fishing and photography tournament. The tournament recently wrapped up its first year, with spokespersons Tom Raftican and Jenny Armstrong presenting highlights of the successful event at the council's meeting in September. In the advisory council's letter, Chair Eric Kett explains that he "appreciated seeing so many children and families from our area enjoying the Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary", and that it was "heartening to learn that our sanctuary had the most photo submissions and several winners!" The letter also points out that the Sanctuary Classic is helpful because "people who experience the sanctuary can form strong connections to the place and develop a sense of stewardship", and emphasizes that "a healthy ocean ecosystem can support multiple uses, including ethical angling". At the meeting, the advisory council discussed ethical angling practices and educational benefits of the tournament, and asked their recreational fishing representative, Capt. David Bacon, to serve as a point of contact for following up with the Sportfishing Conservancy to communicate additional thoughts, questions and ideas regarding the tournament. The council's letter is available here.
Environmental Stewardship Award Given to Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary Advisory Council
On September 30th, Santa Barbara Beautiful, a long-established local non-profit organization, presented their annual Playa de Santa Barbara Environmental Stewardship award to the Sanctuary Advisory Council of the Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary. The award was presented at their 48th annual gala awards event held at the beautiful Music Academy of the West. Santa Barbara County Supervisor Salud Carbajal presented the award to Eric Kett, Chair of the Sanctuary Advisory Council, recognizing the leadership, commitment, volunteerism and accomplishments of the advisory council. Several advisory council members and a few sanctuary staff were present as well, joining the hundreds in attendance.
Formed in 1965 by civic leaders, Santa Barbara Beautiful is an organization of volunteers dedicated to beautifying the local area in a variety of ways, and recognizing important beautification projects throughout the city each year as well as those who have made unique contributions to the ongoing health and beauty of the community.
For more information contact email@example.com or visit http://www.sbbeautiful.org/.
Significance. This award serves as a reminder of how national marine sanctuary advisory councils help NOAA work well within coastal communities, and how advisory councils are respected as locally significant community groups doing meaningful environmental work.
|An Environmental Stewardship award was presented by Santa Barbara Beautiful to the Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary Advisory Council. From left are council members: Eric Kett, Stephanie Mutz and Capt. David Bacon. On the right is sanctuary staff Mike Murray.
"Sanctuary Classic" Wrap-Up Report Provided to Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary Advisory Council
On September 21, 2012, Tom Raftican and Jenny Armstrong with the Sportfishing Conservancy provided a report on the recently completed summer long "Sanctuary Classic" fishing and photography tournament. Ms. Armstrong showed pictures and videos, describing how the tournament grew in popularity over the summer, with 100 photos coming in from family fishing trips taken within the Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary. The four grand prize winners were announced: Aiden Rose (Channel Islands), Wesley Farrer (Florida Keys), Zane Toyon (Channel Islands), and Anthony and Michael Gonzales (Florida Keys). Mr. Raftican thanked sanctuary staff and local businesses for their support, indicated that he would like to see the program repeat next year, and hoped that the advisory council might consider writing a letter of support.
|One of the four grand prize winners of a $1,000 Guy Harvey Scholarship award was Aiden Rose, shown here in this winning photo with his prized lingcod from the Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary. (Photo from: sanctuaryclassic.org.)