Leadership in research, education, and analytics to promote a sustainable Blue Economy
The “Blue Economy” is a widely used term meaning the overall economic contribution of the oceans and coasts to the national economy and the need to address the sustainability of these natural assets. The Center for the Blue Economy is a research and academic center developing innovative ways to address critical ocean and coastal resource management issues. The center’s research demonstrates the tremendous value of ocean and coastal resources and the interdependence of a healthy ocean, well-managed coastline, and strong economy. Our data shows that in 2014, the coastal economy contributed 83.7% of the total U.S. GDP and 81.5% of total U.S. employment. Rising sea levels, the impact of increasingly powerful and unpredictable storms, and the degradation of critical natural resources like coastal wetlands threaten to significantly diminish the economic drivers that the nation has historically relied on. Understanding the economic contributions of the oceans and coasts to human welfare and mitigating climate change are thus more important than ever.
The Center for the Blue Economy is based at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey (MIIS), blocks from the ocean in beautiful Monterey, California. MIIS is a sister institution to Middlebury College, home to the nation’s oldest undergraduate environmental studies program.