284 Chapters
Medium 9781603442909


Buster, Noreen A. Texas A&M University Press ePub

Gregg R. Brooks and David Mallinson

The Florida Middle Ground (FMG) reef complex, located on the west Florida continental margin (see Hine and Locker in chapter 7 in this volume) in the northeastern Gulf of Mexico, is unusual in that it occupies a relatively high-latitude (>28N), mid-shelf setting (Fig. 19.1). As one of the most productive fishing grounds in the Gulf of Mexico since the 1880s, most early research on the FMG was biological. Investigations of the physical environment began in the 1950s, but most of the initial work was descriptive and focused on reef physiography primarily for navigation for the fishing fleet. Geological studies began in the 1970s and dealt principally with sediments and sedimentary processes. The most recent investigations, beginning in the 1990s, have utilized the vast improvements in available technology to fine-tune and improve upon previous investigations. Current investigations focus on timing and controls of FMG development and how they relate to paleoclimates and Gulf of Mexico circulation patterns.

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Medium 9781623490447

3. Hail (to) the People

Jeffrey P. Mehltretter Drury Texas A&M University Press ePub


Hail (to) the People

Can authority be more amiable and respectable when it descends from accidents or institutions established in remote antiquity than when it springs fresh from the hearts and judgments of an honest and enlightened people? For it is the people only that are represented. It is their power and majesty that is reflected, and only for their good, in every legitimate government, under whatever form it may appear.

—John Adams, Inaugural Address

Both physically and symbolically the president of the United States represents the ideals of an entire nation. He speaks for and with the voice of the people, maintaining the identity and heritage of the nation through his rhetorical choices, whether depicting his constituency as residents of a shining city on a hill, a thousand points of light, lovers of freedom, or some other rendering. He may be addressing an international audience: “To the ears of the world,” President Gerald Ford advised, “the President speaks for the Nation.”1 But he also invites individual citizens to see themselves as part of the collective “people.” Surely the president’s ability to advance viable images of the US citizenry before a multifaceted audience is a component of presidential leadership.2 In the epigraph, John Adams observes that presidents derive authority from the “hearts” and “judgments” of the people—from their esteemed virtues and their grounded beliefs.3

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Medium 9781603447652

2. Use of Models in Ecosystem-Based Management of the Southern Everglades and Florida Bay, Florida

John W Day Texas A&M University Press ePub

Christopher J. Madden

The trend toward comprehensive ecosystem management of coastal ecosystems throughout the United States is accelerating. In June 2003, the Pew Oceans Commission released the report America’s Living Oceans: Charting a Course for Sea Change, which asserted that on a national scale, comprehensive ecosystem-based management (EBM) strategies must be implemented for management and stewardship of our coastal marine ecosystems: “Ecosystem-based management entails developing a new perspective that acknowledges and understands that there are limits to our knowledge; marine ecosystems are inherently unpredictable; ecosystems have functional, historical, and evolutionary limits that constrain human exploitation. . . . Flexible, adaptive management that incorporates new knowledge and provides some level of insurance for unpredictable and uncontrollable events embodies ecosystem-based management.” (Pew Oceans Commission 2003).

The US Commission on Ocean Policy (2004) stated that an EBM perspective is necessary “to address the pervasive scientific uncertainty inherent in natural systems and the failures of single species management approaches to adequately address that uncertainty. . . . US ocean and coastal resources should be managed to reflect the relationships among all ecosystem components, including human and nonhuman species and the environments in which they live. Applying this principle will require defining relevant geographic management areas based on ecosystem, rather than political, boundaries.” (US Commission on Ocean Policy 2004).

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Medium 9781603442015

Where the First Raindrop Falls

Ken W Kramer Texas A&M University Press ePub

David K. Langford

BEFORE Lyndon B. Johnson was a politician, he was a child of the land. Growing up in the Texas Hill Country amid grazing sheep, cattle, and sparkling, clear springs, he inherently understood the relationship among sky, land, and water. Like most Texans, LBJ felt a strong kinship to the land because, since the days of the Republic, our lives and our livelihoods have been shaped by the diverse landscape that characterizes our home.

Although the former president was not part of my biological family, he was part of a large extended family of clannish, pioneering souls determined to eke a living from the Hill Country’s rock-strewn terrain. We were not kin by blood, but we were bound by shared experiences.

My biological family is like the ancient live oaks that dot the Texas Hill Country. For as long as there are memories, we have sunk our roots into the shallow soil and battled to survive in a place whose beauty belies its harshness.

Seven generations of my family have called Gillespie County and Kendall County home. From the beginning, my family has had a love affair, for lack of a better phrase, with water. The Hill Country can be unforgiving when you’re trying to coax a living from the soil. Water was the one thing that made the land hospitable—and offered the promise of a future.

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Medium 9781603440868

Chapter 4 The Changing Coastal and Ocean Economies of the United StatesGulf of Mexico 47Judith T. K ildow, Charles S. Colgan,and Linwood Pendleton

James C Cato Texas A&M University Press PDF


The Changing Coastal and

Ocean Economies of the

United States Gulf of Mexico

Judith T. Kildow, Charles S. Colgan, and

Linwood Pendleton


A4903.indb 47

A comprehensive strategy is needed to protect and nurture the Gulf of Mexico’s riches. Public focus—and that of the government and academics—has been largely locked on the devastation from the 2005 hurricanes. But stresses on the rich natural resources of this special area have been intensifying for many years.

These stresses have been felt especially in the degradation and shrinkage of wetlands and the decline of fisheries. Declining water quality, both fresh water for drinking and seawater, has exacerbated the situation.

The economies of the Gulf states are inextricably linked to the quality and values of the Gulf’s natural resources. Recent reviews of scientific studies, management practices, and the availability of information about economics and natural resources have opened new windows for developing effective strategic plans for protecting these resources. Government and the private sector can work together to use this new information to create a multitiered paradigm with a positive effect on coastal resource management for years to come. Several activities indicate that this shift is under way, including creation of the Gulf of

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