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California Coast: Science, Policy and Law

This interdisciplinary course integrates the legal, science, and policy dimensions of characterizing and managing our coastal resources in California. Our focus is on the land-sea interface as we explore contemporary coastal land use and marine resource decision-making. Among the focal issues we will examine are: coastal pollution, public health, ecosystem management; public access; private development; local community and state infrastructure; natural systems and significant threats; resource extraction; and conservation, mitigation and restoration. Students will learn the fundamental physics, chemistry, and biology of the coastal zone, tools for exploring data collected in the coastal ocean (time series analysis), as well as the institutional framework that shapes public and private decision-making affecting coastal resources. This course will take a "place-based" approach. Special Instructions: THIS COURSE IS TAUGHT AS A HIGH LEVEL GRADUATE-STYLE COURSE WITH EXTENSIVE IN-CLASS DISCUSSION THAT REQUIRES CAREFUL PREPARATION FOR EACH CLASS SESSION. Students will be expected to participate fully in field studies designed to provide a personal understanding of how experts from different disciplines confront and work to resolve coastal policy questions. At least three mandatory field trips are required in this course. Elements used in grading: Participation, including class session attendance and field trip attendance, as well as writing and quantitative assignments. (Cross-listed with CEE 175A/275A, EARTHSYS 175/275)

Instructors for this course (Past and Present)

Deborah A. Sivas