Coastal Turbidity on the Southeast Florida Shelf - Monitoring Turbid Water Sources and Fates by Satellite
Turbidity can have a significant impact on coral reef ecosystems through light limitation, sedimentation, and eutrophication. Because of the significant impact that turbidity can have, the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (FDEP) made it a priority in their 2004 local action strategy to determine the tracks and fates of turbidity in the waters of the northern Florida reef tract. Additionally, NOAA's Coral Reef Conservation Program funded a study from 2013 to 2015 to determine the feasibility of monitoring turbidity plumes in reef waters for three U.S. jurisdictions, one of which was the Southeast Florida Shelf and northern Florida reef tract. This report presents the results of that study. It shows that with care, satellite ocean color can be used to remotely monitor sources and instances of coastal ocean turbidity.
Relative turbidity or Color Index (CI) maps were gathered via the Moderate-resolution imaging spectroradiometer (MODIS) ocean color instruments on two polar-orbiting satellites at 250 meter spatial resolution. Maps have been produced for analysis from July 2002 to May 2017, and new maps have been made available to management partners in all three jurisdictions in near real-time via a public web site (https://optics.marine.usf.edu).
Citation: Gramer, L.J., and J.C. Hendee, 2018: Coastal turbidity on the southeast Florida Shelf - Monitoring turbid water sources and fates by satellite. NOAA Technical Memorandum, OAR-AOML-105 (doi:10.25923/zqv9-nw98), 31 pp.
Appearing as solitary forms in the fossil record more than 400 million years ago, corals are extremely ancient animals that evolved into modern reef-building forms over the last 25 million years. Continue Reading →
coral reef conservation program
The NOAA Coral Reef Conservation Program (CRCP) is a partnership between the NOAA Line Offices that work on coral reef issues: the National Ocean Service, the National Marine Fisheries Service, the Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research, and the National Environmental Satellite, Data and Information Service. The CRCP brings together expertise from across NOAA for a multidisciplinary approach to managing and understanding coral reef ecosystems.
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