DEEP: DEP Receives Underwater Research Camera from Coastal America

January 13, 2011
 
DEP Receives Underwater Research Camera from Coastal America
Camera will be used for Research and Outreach Activities

The Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) Office of Long Island Sound Program today announced it has received a state-of-the-art underwater research camera on behalf of the New England Regional Ocean Council from Coastal America’s Corporate Wetlands Restoration Partnership (CWRP). Coastal America is a partnership between federal, state and local governments and private organizations. The camera will be used by the DEP to study coastal and marine habitats and for public education efforts.

"We are grateful to the CWRP for demonstrating their commitment to coastal and marine management efforts by providing DEP with this underwater camera," said Brian Thompson, Director of DEP’s Office of Long Island Sound Programs. "By adding underwater video to the DEP’s coastal management efforts, the public and stakeholders will have a better understanding of the health of coastal and marine habitat."

On July 19, 2010, President Obama signed an Executive Order establishing a National Policy for the Stewardship of the Ocean, Coasts, and Great Lakes. To support that initiative, Coastal America’s National Corporate Wetlands Restoration Partnership Board committed to provide an industry standard underwater video camera system to organizations that study coastal and marine habitat. Several New England State Chapters of the CWRP, including ME, MA, NH, & RI provided funding toward the purchase of the camera.

"We whole heartily supported the funding of these cameras," said Ruthanne Calabrese, Chairperson of the Connecticut chapter of CWRP. As an Environmental Manager at Northeast Utilities, she appreciates the opportunity to align industry and government toward the common goal of environmental stewardship. You can learn more about the CT chapter of the CWRP at www.CTCWRP.org.

The DEP plans to use the underwater camera for a variety of purposes, including:

  • Assessing the natural habitat in the Long Island Sound and inland waters
  • Assisting with submerged aquatic vegetation sampling in Connecticut’s lakes and ponds
  • Analyzing use of manmade structures by fish and other marine life
  • Educating the public, particularly schoolchildren, on the underwater habitat of Connecticut’s waterbodies

The DEP Office of Long Island Sound Programs (OLISP) implements, oversees, and enforces the state’s coastal management and coastal permit laws and regulations. The office also manages programs to protect and restore coastal resources and habitat, and helps coastal towns to plan and implement programs to protect coastal resources and encourage water-dependent uses of the shorefront.