Capitol Hill Coastal Economic Resiliency Briefing Draws Crowd

A briefing on Sept. 21, sponsored by the Sea Grant Association in cooperation with the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee, featured Jim Sharrow with the Duluth Seaway Port Authority as one of three speakers.

Attended by more than 55 congressional staffers and interested persons, the briefing focused on economic resiliency in the nation’s coastal communities. Sharrow spoke about the port’s successful economic activities and his work with both the Wisconsin and Minnesota Sea Grant programs on the beneficial reuse of dredged material, about finding answers to the issue of freshwater corrosion of steel structures in the harbor, and ballast water discharge rulings.

James Hurley, Wisconsin Sea Grant director, attended the briefing. “Jim’s description was the essence of Sea Grant,” he said. “It started with a stakeholder need that sparked the research. The results from the research were then used to develop policies. Truly, it is actionable science at its best. I look forward to solving future issues in the region alongside him.”

The briefing opened and closed with comments by Sea Grant Association President Sylvain De Guise. Other speakers included Herb Malone, president and CEO of the Alabama Gulf Coast Convention and Visitors Bureau, and Ian Jeffords, owner and general manager of Penn Cove Shellfish in Washington State.