New York harbor’s oyster beds once protected against severe storm and extreme wave damage

Posted In Ecosystem Destruction, Inform

Photograph: © SAF — Coastal Care


A recent study of past disturbance of the oyster beds in New York Harbor led by geoscientists is the first to link Europeans’ overharvesting and disturbance of the ancient shellfish beds to loss of natural coastal defenses against floods and storm waves…

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How colonial oyster harvests left NYC vulnerable to Superstorm Sandy, The Washington Post (03-10-2016)
New York’s settlers worked up quite an appetite building what became one of the largest cities in the world. They ate oysters in the harbor like they were going out of style.By the early 20th Century, 220,000 acres of reef covering 350 square miles was gone, according to The Big Oyster, a book on their history in the city…

The Great American Oyster Collapse, AlJazeera (07-21-2014)

An Oyster in the Storm; The New York Times (11-02-2012)
“I wish I had some oysters. I’m not talking about oysters to eat … I’m talking about the oysters that once protected New Yorkers from storm surges, a bivalve population that numbered in the trillions and that played a critical role in stabilizing the shoreline from Washington to Boston…” An Op Ed by Paul Greenberg, The New York Times…

An Evolving Coastal City, An Op Ed By Marcha Johnson (11-12-2012)
Now that Sandy has caught our collective attention with a real-life demonstration of NYC’s vulnerability and capacity for response and recovery, let’s teach ourselves many ways to live more wisely in a changing environment…

Texas Oyster Reef Restoration Project Begins In Gulf Of Mexico, Huffington Green (11-04-2013)
A deep sea oyster reef restoration being touted as the largest ever in the Gulf of Mexico began in an unlikely place…


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