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Coastal research project at UC Santa Cruz receives major boost in funding

SANTA CRUZ, CA--For the past two years, researchers at the University of California, Santa Cruz, have been studying and monitoring coastal ecosystems as part of a long-term collaborative research project involving four major universities in California and Oregon. Now the organization funding the project, the David and Lucile Packard Foundation, has augmented its original $17.7 million grant to the four institutions with an additional $2,285,000 grant for the UC Santa Cruz portion of the project.

Called the Partnership for Interdisciplinary Studies of Coastal Oceans (PISCO), the project involves researchers at UCSC, UC Santa Barbara, Oregon State University (OSU), and Stanford University. PISCO researchers are studying the communities of organisms in nearshore habitats along a 1,200-mile stretch of coastal waters from Oregon to southern California. The nearshore zone, from the shoreline out to about six miles off shore, is heavily influenced by human activities, but the natural dynamics of the ecological communities in this zone are not well understood, said Peter Raimondi and Mark Carr, UCSC's principal investigators on the PISCO project.

UCSC scientists led by Carr and Raimondi are responsible for all of PISCO's field research in northern and central California, as well as some of the research in southern California. UCSC's portion of the original five-year grant was $3.2 million, and the augmentation brings the campus to the same level of funding as the other partner institutions.

"This significant augmentation from the Packard Foundation recognizes the outstanding work spearheaded by UCSC, as well as the potential for significant advances in understanding coastal ecosystems," said Jane Lubchenco, a PISCO principal investigator at OSU.

PISCO researchers have established a coordinated ecological monitoring network using identical research protocols at 57 study sites along the California and Oregon coasts. Their work monitorin
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Contact: Tim Stephens
stephens@cats.ucsc.edu
831-459-2495
University of California - Santa Cruz
9-Apr-2001


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