coastal region

Multi-functional Seagrass Beds are Disappearing from the Coast

You could say the best thing about seagrass is that you don’t have to mow it. 

Okay, that may be a stretch. 

But in truth, seagrass is beneficial in its role as an important coastal habitat. That’s because young ocean-going fish can grow and develop in seagrass beds before setting out on their journey of life. 

The Changing Outer Banks

Ask almost anyone in the country to describe North Carolina’s Outer Banks and they could probably name a few images easily — the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse, the wild horses, wide strips of sandy beach, and the Wright Brothers monument.

The Outer Banks are so ingrained into our collective national consciousness that people can visualize the coastal region without ever visiting it. The irony is that while images of the Outer Banks remain the same, the islands are constantly changing. They are supposed to.

Tidal Power

What won’t work in North Carolina?

Scientists are focusing on three sources of renewable energy from the oceans: wind power, wave power, and harnessing of the energy of the Gulf Stream. All of them have tremendous potential as a source of energy. They also present major challenges. However, there is another ocean energy source that has already been ruled out: tidal power.