The San Francisco Bay Conservation and Development Commission's Sediment Management Team just finished hosting a 2-day workshop titled "The Science of Sediment". The workshop was designed to bring together managers and scientists in the region to identify priority management needs around physical processes of sediment across a wide array of geographic sectors (from the upper watershed, to marshes and shorelines, down to the open bay and subtidal habitats), and then to brainstorm science research strategies to address these priority management needs.
Because sediment is managed in a piecemeal, multi-jurisdictional way, the goal was to take initial steps to identify key areas of overlapping management need and gaps in knowledge that could benefit the region as a whole. We had over 40 participants, with a mix of representation from the science, management, regulatory, consulting, and non-profit sectors and expertise spanning sediment transport, hydrology, geomorphology, wetland management, shoreline management, dredging management, and coastal engineering, among others. Issues and knowledge gaps related to sea level rise and where/how to assist marsh accretion, particularly in light of an overall reduction in sediment supply to the Bay, were a key focus of much of the discussion. Maya Hayden, the SF Cooperative Coordinator, partnered with the Sediment Management Team to help plan and facilitate the workshop, and will be assisting with drafting/refining of components of the research strategy. Other Cooperative members provided feedback and facilitation expertise to help craft the workshop process, and/or were direct participants in the workshop itself. Management needs and prioritized research strategies identified during the workshop and further developed with partners will feed into BCDC's long-term sediment management planning process and will facilitate the targeting of research and monitoring needed for the region.