Funded Projects Spring 2014

  1. Sama Group: Ecological and Economic Feasibility for a Sustainable Coastal Development
    Sama Group is presently gaining traction with Santa Barbara County towards the adoption of a “Sustainable Living Research Ordinance” (SLRO) that would allow more sustainable types of development (not allowed in current building/zoning/health codes) that demonstrate positive ecological impacts with compelling community and economic benefits. The proposed project would hire 2 UCSB student interns and support from Sama Group staff to conduct an ecological and economic feasibility study of a sustainable (re)development of coastal property, such as the UCSB-owned Devereaux property, or private developer-owned Naples property(s).
    Total Funded: $1,900


  1. Coal Oil Point Reserve: Internships and additional funding support for conservation, education, and restoration programs: Summer 2014/Fall 2014
    Coal Oil Point Reserve requests funds to provide UCSB students with paid internships for summer and fall quarters 2014. UCSB student interns will participate in the Snowy Plover Docent Program, the education program, and the habitat restoration program. The internships at the reserve will provide UCSB students with opportunities to acquire field experience necessary to enhance their professional development. The summer is the most sensitive time for the Western Snowy Plover (listed endangered species). The birds lay their eggs in the sand and raise their chicks on the public beach. Providing internships to UCSB students over the summer to assist with the conservation efforts of the snowy plover greatly improves the outreach and protection capabilities of the program.
    Total Funded: $7,450


  1. CCBER: Kids in Nature Peer-to-Peer Environmental Education Program
    Four undergraduate students will be selected to serve as Kids in Nature (KIN) interns during fall quarter 2014. The interns will have successfully completed the Education Practicum course (EEMB 189/ES 191), which we have offered each quarter since 2008. The KIN interns will serve as mentors for the newly enrolled UCSB students and also for the over 90 5th grade students who are part of the KIN program. The interns will each lead one of the KIN groups of 4-5 students in classroom activities and on field trips.
    Total Funded: $15,761


  1. Santa Barbara Channelkeeper: MPA Watch Internship
    MPA Watch is a monitoring program that utilizes volunteers to record and track human activities in and around Santa Barbara’s newly designated Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) by conducting onshore visual surveys. The data collected by MPA Watch volunteers is critical in detecting trends in human uses in the MPAs and how they correspond to biological changes resulting from the protected status of the MPAs. The program will also aid compliance and enforcement efforts to ensure that MPA regulations are followed.
    Total Funded: $4,932.12


  1. Marine Science Institute: From Plankton to Particles: Predicting the Fate of Carbon in an Acidified Coastal Ecosystem
    This research project will bring an entirely new aspect of ocean acidification (OA) research to UCSB by examining a newly isolated, local phytoplankton species’ biogeochemical response to predicted climate conditions in the Santa Barbara Channel (SBC). Phytoplankton are an ecologically important group of marine autotrophs that contribute to carbon sequestration and food web structure in the SBC. Alterations to the physiology of these microscopic plants as a result of OA could result in dramatic changes to local water chemistry and marine aquaculture. To address this important issue, this project will not only focus on scientific discovery, it will also utilize modern video technology and the internet as a platform for community outreach and support the mentorship of an undergraduate student interested in contributing to their senior honors thesis in the aquatic sciences. This research project will enhance our current understanding of ocean acidification and seek to preserve and protect the UCSB shoreline for years to come by contributing research to the scientific community, raising environmental awareness in the online community, and fostering the education of an undergraduate student in the UCSB community.
    Total Funded: $15,338.60


  1. Reef Check Foundation: Reef Check California
    Reef Check California (RCCA) is a community-based monitoring program dedicated to conserving California’s rocky reef ecosystem. At UCSB, RCCA trains students in reef monitoring protocols. Students then participate in RCCA’s annual surveys along the Santa Barbara coast and Channel Islands. The students’ data are used by the MPA Monitoring Enterprise to inform the monitoring of marine protected areas in southern California, by the Department of Fish and Wildlife and by leading marine scientists. Funds will support staff, training and surveys, providing UCSB with increased opportunities for immersion learning, field experience, and active engagement in marine management processes in California.
    Total Funded: $11,000.00


  1. CCBER: Nature Saturdays for North Campus Open Space
    CCBER is requesting funding to run four Nature Saturday events on North Campus Open Space to build on the 6 funded by the Outhwaite Foundation. Nature Saturday events are a capacity building program for CCBER to do outdoor education with Goleta and IV community members and their families about our local coastal resources. The goal is to build community as we move in to planning for and restoring the Ocean Meadows Golf Course and South Parcel in these people’s back yards. Their first event attracted more than 70 people and was much appreciated. They’ve been advertising this poster/flyer around town. Kids 6-12 can be dropped off by a parent. Kids 5 and under should be with a parent. There were 30 kids from the 6-12 range at their first event. Project is hopeful of being sustained after its over. CCBER is trying to target semi broad area from freeway to airport.
    Total Funded: $9,975.00


  1. Los Padres ForestWatch: Wilderness, Wildlife, and Watersheds
    The Wilderness, Wildlife & Watersheds Program is a volunteer effort designed to remove trash from ten areas in the Los Padres National Forest and restore six areas by removing invasive tamarisk plants from forest watersheds. By doing so, they can prevent water pollution, promote watershed function, remove visual blights on the landscape, and increase everyone’s enjoyment of the great outdoors. Through this program ForestWatch has taken an active hands-on role in protecting and restoring these special places with the help of hundreds of community volunteers. The work makes a direct impact addressing projects that simply would not get done were it not for their efforts. Federal agency budgets preclude their completing these labor-intensive but wholly necessary projects, and that is where volunteers step in and get the work done. As a result of these efforts and the engagement and education in the community, they protect clean water, open space, and wildlife habitat that are so important to environmental health and quality of life.
    Total Funded: $18,638.74


  1. Plastic Solutions: Freshman Water Bottle Giveaway
    Plastic Solutions is a campus organization here at UCSB that aims to reduce the amount of single-use plastics on campus. One of their goals is to eliminate the sale of single-use plastic water bottles on campus. In doing so, Plastic Solutions would like to promote awareness of the impact of single-use plastic water bottles by having a Freshmen Water Bottle Giveaway next fall. The idea behind this is that the water bottles would be given to students who sign a pledge to stop purchasing and using single-use plastic water bottles.
    Total Funded: $3,750


  1. Environmental Defense Center: Cleaning and Enhancing Goleta’s Vital Watersheds
    EDC will plan and implement seven creek and watershed clean-ups to protect water quality in the Goleta Valley in 2014. Beyond straight clean-up, they will identify and abate pollution sources and train and empower creek stewards to carry the work forward. Working with a student intern lead, they will conduct site reconnaissance, schedule the clean-ups, obtain City of Goleta and Santa Barbara County permits, prepare maps and waiver forms for participants, and provide supplies (e.g., bags and gloves). Their work will include but not be limited to securing volunteers, engaging local media, supervising volunteers and managing the clean-ups.
    Total Funded: $6,013


  1. Isla Vista Recreation & Park District: Adopt-A-Block
    Adopt-A-Block is requesting the funding to retain a part-time staff member to continue to expand their community outreach and special events portion of their existing program. This person would reach out to student groups to create awareness and solicit their participation in keeping our streets and beach accesses clear of waste that would have otherwise reached our beaches and ultimately pollute our oceans. They are also looking to improve the quality and efficiency of their clean-up events by obtaining funding for a portable PA system and an AAB EZ-UP canopy.
    Total Funded: $1,714.95


  1. Explore Ecology: Coastal Cleanup Day and Watershed Resource Center Management Internship
    This grant will fund UCSB student interns to assist Explore Ecology (EE) staff at the Watershed Resource Center (WRC). The objective is to raise public awareness about Santa Barbara’s unique watersheds and ocean environment and impart the importance of practicing pollution prevention to maintain clean water quality. UCSB interns will be instrumental in the development and management of community programming and will work as liaisons with UCSB students and faculty, involving them in WRC activities, and in administering the Santa Barbara County Coastal Cleanup Day event and Creek Week activities.
    Total Funded: $6,552


  1. Marine Science Institute: Developing New Tools for Assessing the Vulnerability of Sandy Beach Ecosystems to Climate Change
    Coastal ecosystems are not adequately considered in climate change adaptation planning, particularly at local scales. Sandy beaches make up most of Santa Barbara’s coastline providing vital economic, recreational and ecological benefits. A critical impediment to assessing vulnerability of beach ecosystems to climate change is the lack of information on the elevations of key ecological zones relative to standard elevational metrics (mean sea level, mean high tide) used in modeling coastal hazards. To fill this critical gap, this project will collect elevation data for key ecological features of beaches that can be integrated with standard elevational metrics used in coastal models.
    Total Funded: $5,669


Minor Funding

  1. South Coast Habitat Restoration: Watershed Restoration Assistant Fall 2014
    South Coast Habitat Restoration is a local non-profit that is dedicated to environmental stewardship and habitat restoration. They focus their efforts on preserving and restoring habitat for the endangered southern steelhead trout. This proposal seeks funding for compensation for two UCSB student assistant positions. The assistants will assist with the implementation of a variety of watershed restoration projects including: fish passage improvements, bank stabilization projects, non native removal, and maintenance and monitoring of project sites, under the guidance and supervision of SCHR staff. Additionally assistants will be involved in community outreach and education at local festivals and volunteer events with SCHR. This work will focus on projects that restore stream habitat for the endangered southern steelhead trout throughout Santa Barbara County’s coastal streams. The student assistants will learn about native flora and fauna and be introduced to the process of project implementation including: planning, permitting, construction, native re-vegetation etc.
    Total Funded: TBA


  1. Center for Spatial Studies & Department of Geography, UCSB: Exploring the UCSB Coast with kite aerial photography
    Using kite aerial photography (KAP) and image processing software, undergraduate interns will create a time series of photographic maps of the coastal zone between Campus Point (CP) and Coal Oil Point (COP) during Summer Quarter of 2014. The resulting maps and photographs will be featured in a lesson, designed by the interns, to teach 3rd-6th student about the ecology and geomorphology of the Santa Barbara coast while introducing principles of environmental monitoring through remote sensing. The lesson will be delivered to one or more local elementary school classes during Fall Quarter of 2014, in conjunction with the Department of Geography’s annual community outreach event during Geography Awareness Week (November 16–22). The project will run through Summer and Fall quarters, 2014, and will require two UCSB undergraduate interns who will receive 3 units of Geog 199RA credit for their participation of approximately 6 hours per week.
    Total Funded: $990.00
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