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Atlantic Offshore Minerals Assessment Workshop

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Atlantic margin offshore aggregates (sand and gravel) assessment was given momentum at the Atlantic Margin Offshore Aggregates Workshop held at Minerals Management Service headquarters in Herndon, VA, on May 10 and 11. It was convened by Frank Manheim (Reston/Woods Hole), Roger Amato (MMS), and Charles Chesnutt (U.S. Army Corps of Engineers). The meeting was attended by 46 representatives of 20 organizations, including seven state geological surveys. Jeff Williams (C&M Coordinator, Reston) opened the session with remarks pointing out the dominance of coastal erosion throughout the margin, as well as anticipated sea-level rise in the next century. These affect use of aggregates for beach replenishment. Other C&MG attendees included Peter Barnes (Reston), Chris Polloni, Larry Poppe, Polly Hastings, and Courtney Harris (WHFC). USGS presenters included Frank Manheim (offshore sediment and database development), Bill Schwab (New York Bight, Long Island, and North Carolina offshore mapping), Jerry McFaul (Reston) and Chris Polloni (GIS development, including DVD production), Courtney Harris (physical oceanographic data and modeling), and Valentin Tepordei (Minerals Information Team, Reston) (land aggregate status).

Goals of the meeting were to share offshore aggregate user needs and plans, identify information on existing offshore sediment data, and explore cooperative GIS products. Besides USGS "legacy" data sets (see figure below), mainly surficial samples, presenters identified more than 12 other significant sediment data sets, often vibracore data in the near-shore area. Some data sets, such as those for Maryland and North Carolina, were available in advanced GIS formats.

Atlantic Offshore Minerals (Aggregates) Assessment

To deal with ancillary data needed for research and management of aggregates (including wave and current modeling, benthic biology, etc.) a steering committee was formed to stimulate and guide cooperative GIS development. A more detailed summary, attendee list, list of data sets, and steering committee makeup can be obtained on request from Frank Manheim (fmanheim@usgs.gov).

Related Web Sites
Atlantic Margin Offshore Sediments
U.S. Geological Survey (USGS)

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