Texas coral reefs focus of national workshop at Rice’s Baker Institute Aug. 23 -24

Scientists, policymakers and community leaders to discuss ‘Texas Coral Reefs: Today, Yesterday and Tomorrow’

Scientists, policymakers and community leaders will gather for a workshop about Texas coral reefs to raise awareness of the reefs and banks along the Texas continental shelf at Rice University’s Baker Institute for Public Policy Aug. 23-24. The Texas coral reefs are the northernmost reef system in the United States and a national marine sanctuary, home to hundreds of kinds of fish and other tropical sea life.

The workshop will kick off at 6:30 p.m. Aug. 23, with a public lecture by author and photographer Jesse Cancelmo on “Fifty Reasons to Love the Flower Garden Banks.”

Who: Scientists, policymakers and community leaders.

What: “Texas Coral Reefs: Today, Yesterday and Tomorrow.”

When: Thursday, Aug. 23, 6:30 p.m.; Friday, Aug. 24, 9 a.m.-5:30 p.m.

Where: Rice University, Baker Hall, 6100 Main St.

Discussions will address the reefs’ condition today, in the past and over the next 50 years in the context of global warming, sea level rise, ocean acidification, overfishing, general pollution and other possible environmental issues.

The workshop is sponsored by the Baker Institute Science and Technology Policy Program as well as Rice University’s Center for the Study of the Environment and Society and the Shell Center for Sustainability, in conjunction with the Harte Research Institute for Gulf of Mexico Studies at Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi.

The event is free and open to the public. For the full conference agenda and speaker information and to register, visit http://bakerinstitute.org/events/texas-coral-reefs-today-yesterday-and-tomorrow. A webcast of the workshop will be available at http://bakerinstitute.org/webcasts.

About Jeff Falk

Jeff Falk is associate director of national media relations in Rice University's Office of Public Affairs.