Coastal Development

Coastal Development & Artificial Reef Habitats

CSA Ocean Sciences Inc. (CSA) personnel have managed and/or participated in all aspects of coastal development projects. These projects have ranged from creating habitat for the construction and mitigation for a channel in the Bahamas to the construction and management of over 25 artificial reef projects for various clients in the United States, Bahamas, and Gulf of Arabia (Qatar). CSA has successfully conducted numerous coastal development projects that involved marine construction, habitat enhancement, mitigation, and restoration activities.

CSA’s experienced, professional staff are knowledgeable and current in coastal development policies as well as guidelines for national, state, and local natural resource management agencies in regards to coastal development planning, siting, material selection, and configuration. Staff are informed of pertinent regulatory requirements, including relevant consultations for Essential Fish Habitat (EFH), Endangered and Threatened Species, and marine mammals. Many of our projects have focused on developing and/or reviewing technical plans, coordinating grant applications and permits, and making recommendations for overall planning purposes, including site selection and habitat suitability analysis for mitigation and restoration activities.

Coastal Development Expertise

In addition to permitting and planning, CSA has an extensive track record conducting field operations for baseline field surveys and mapping, including photo documentation (underwater video and still camera), side-scan sonar, subbottom profiling, vibracoring, bathymetric studies, and integrated video mapping systems, to provide complete bathymetric features for comprehensive environmental habitat characterization. Marine field surveys frequently involve the integrated use of various individual operations combined in a manner appropriate to the overall data requirements for a specific project.

CSA personnel have developed efficient techniques to analyze the collected data and display the results with geoportals and other forms of data presentations. CSA provides clients with survey data in a variety of digital data formats, including ArcView and ArcGIS databases. CSA's equipment, operational and scientific personnel, and QA/QC plans ensure the collection of quality data.

Artificial Reefs

As part of our mitigation and restoration capabilities, CSA has designed and implemented coral and seagrass relocation and artificial reef projects. CSA’s artificial reef designs have typically called for secondary use of both natural and man-made materials, based on availability, cost, practicability, and applicability in meeting the established objectives.

CSA has designed and/or deployed artificial reef modules using guidance from various sources, including the National Artificial Reef Plan, Guidelines for Marine Artificial Reef Materials, the National Marine Sanctuary’s Artificial Reef Guidelines, and the State of Florida’s Artificial Reef Strategic Plan. Designs and multiple-site complexes are developed in order to achieve desired benefits. Artificial reef materials are then strategically placed to maximize biological productivity of the area, avoid impacts to natural systems and human health, promote economic stability, and limit navigational impediments generally accepted by international standards.

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