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Courtney Announces More Than $2 Million in Federal Funding for Connecticut Sea Grant Program

September 20, 2019
Press Release

WASHINGTON, DC – Congressman Joe Courtney (CT-02) today announced that the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has awarded federal grants totaling more than $2 million to Connecticut Sea Grant (CTSG), based out of the University of Connecticut’s Avery Point campus in Groton. 

“Connecticut Sea Grant handles everything from connecting aquaculture producers to communities to jumpstarting fisheries,” said Congressman Courtney. “They’ve been assisting local shellfish farmers, fishermen, and maritime conservation efforts across the Long Island sound for over fifty years, and I’m glad we were able to help them secure this important funding.” 

The first award is for $1,085,131, and will help support the establishment of a National Sea Grant Seaweed Hub. The hub will serve as a central clearinghouse for available science-based, non-proprietary, practical resources related to previous and current seaweed aquaculture research and extension efforts. This project will grant federal and state agencies the ability to access information to guide their own planning and outreach efforts, as well as provide seaweed aquaculture stakeholders with the information they need to make better informed decisions. 

The second award is for $1,173,284 and will be used to expand available science-based tools and information to proactively and effectively engage the public, press, and decision-makers about the social, economic and environmental effects of shellfish aquaculture. The funding will also be used to expand entry level training opportunities to improve decision-making of permitting, with the overall goal of formulating an effective strategy to identify and promote beneficial bivalve aquaculture development in Connecticut and New England. 

Sea Grant is a national network comprised of 33 Sea Grant programs based at flagship universities in coastal and Great Lake states throughout the U.S. and Puerto Rico. The National Sea Grant College Program encourages the wise stewardship of our marine resources through research, education, outreach and technology transfer. The Program is focused on making the United States the world leader in marine research and the sustainable development of marine resources. 

CTSG is funded principally through the NOAA, with matching funds from the State of Connecticut, through the University of Connecticut. The program has three focuses: research, outreach, and education. Outreach efforts include the CTSG Extension Program, and its Communications Program. The program also has an administrative staff committed to promoting understanding of the Sea Grant mission.