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The Atlantic Coastal Zone Informations Steering Committee posts a resources page for students and teachers where you'll find a link to “By the Sea: A Guide to the Coastal Zone of Atlantic Canada,” which illustrates how 11 ecosystems were formed. It details their inhabitants and their relationships with one another and includes suggested field trips. Others links include environmental education programs and projects throughout Canada, interactive ocean mapping and remote sensing sites for elementary and secondary students and curriculum guides and resource materials from the Canadian Wildlife Federation, Environment Canada and Fisheries and Oceans Canada. Explore them at www.dal.ca/aczisc/schools.

The Gulf of Maine Area Census of Marine Life has released the “Dynamic Atlas of the Gulf of Maine,” part of the larger Gulf of Maine Biogeographic Information System. The on-line system allows decades of selected scientific data to be accessed, combined and visualized in ways that were essentially unavailable before now. The Web site also offers a guided tour to new visitors who would like to explore the site's capabilities. The atlas can be found at: http://gmbis.iris.usm.maine.edu.

The New England Interstate Water Pollution Commission's Web site provides a good overview of mercury pollution and what is being done in the Northeast to protect public health and the environment. “Mercury Pollution in the Northeast: A Guide for Policymakers” looks at progress and obstacles at the state and federal levels and includes legislation, initiatives and suggestions to control mercury pollution. You can find these and other publications and upcoming conferences addressing water issues at www.neiwpcc.org/.

The Outermost House by Henry Beston chronicles a solitary year spent on a Cape Cod beach. The nature classic was written in 1928 and tells of the ceaseless rhythms of life along the seashore. A Web site honoring the legacy of Beston and his wife, the poet Elizabeth Coatsworth, has recently been launched. It features writings, interviews, quotes and biographies. An introduction describing the site reads: “…we see it also as an undying beacon and safe haven for those of the modern technocratic age, who seek a closer communion with the eternal verities of nature that Henry Beston wrote of so poetically.” You can visit the site at www.henrybeston.com.

Take an interactive journey through “The Renewal Energy Poster,” the latest in a series of educational materials called “Pathways to a Sustainable Future” created by the Chewonki Foundation in Wiscasset, Maine. Designed for all ages, Pathways, according to the site, “illuminates examples of management and behavior that will lead to long-term sustainable use of energy and natural resources as well as the protection of habitats and ecosystems that support all life on Earth.” The site provides excellent descriptions and explanations of renewable energy concepts like biomass, geothermal, solar and wind power. You can view the poster and other Chewonki educational projects at www.chewonki.org.

The U.S. National Marine Protected Areas Center has established Web-based MPA Regional Information Centers including one on New England. The online centers provide “one-stop-shopping” for comprehensive information on federal, state and tribal marine protected areas planning processes. Stakeholders can search the Information Centers for MPA planning processes by region or state. To access the site go to www.MPA.gov.

© 2005 The Gulf of Maine Times