40 Years of Progress in the Urban Ocean

40 Years of Progress in the Urban Ocean > Ports, Marine Transportation and Coastal Management 
Ports, Marine Transportation and Coastal Management 

LA County is home to the busiest port complex in the United States; close to 45% of all marine freight entering the country comes ashore through the twin ports of LA and Long Beach. Although the ports contribute more than 1 million jobs to a vibrant Southern California economy, the movement of goods to the region and throughout the nation results in environmental impacts affecting air quality, water quality and traffic congestion.With inevitable competition for coastal access from both public and private sectors, USC Sea Grant has played an important role over the years in educating stakeholders about how our coast is managed. USC Sea Grant promotes science, policy, and outreach addressing these challenges and assists policy makers in finding an optimal balance between economic development and environmental protection. 

Program Growth


The Paul Hall Memorial Endowment in Marine Transportation, established at USC in 1981, partially supports USC Sea Grant marine transportation programs and sponsors a lecture series to honor distinguished contributors to marine transportation.  In 2002, funding from NOAA and the Bay-Delta Program allowed us to strengthen our leadership with an Extension Program focused on marine transportation, ports and harbors, and coastal management.

It’s a Small World After All


For the last two decades, USC Sea Grant has invested in public education about the importance of our marine transportation system, including issues involving vessels not owned or operated by U.S. companies. Read more...

Continuity and Innovation


After the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on the U.S., seaports around the world were concerned with the disruption of their services.The Ports of LA and Long Beach are vital to the whole country; thus, “business continuity” became a major focus of shippers, port managers, carriers, and cargo owners. Read more...

Beyond the Ports


The marine transportation system does not operate solely at sea; its landside impacts are felt as goods move through cities and rural areas of the nation by truck and train. Public understanding of the industry is critical for efforts to promote change that will be feasible for the industry and good for the environment and public health. Read more...

Looking Ahead


Acknowledging our expertise in marine shipping and coastal and marine spatial planning, the Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary Advisory Council called upon USC Sea Grant for Working Groups focused on ship strikes on whales and the effects of shipping on air quality. Read more...

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