About Summit

About Summit

Restore America’s Estuaries (RAE) and the Coastal States Organization (CSO) presented the 9th National Summit on Coastal and Estuarine Restoration and Management in December 2018, which brought together the coastal restoration and management communities for integrated discussions to explore issues, solutions, and lessons learned in their work. The Summit provided timely and much-needed attention to the challenges and opportunities for coastal and estuarine restoration and management. It brought together a unique blend of people who are involved in policy, science, strategy, business, and on-the-ground restoration and management.

The 2018 Summit program addressed all aspects of coastal and estuarine restoration and management, in all ecosystems, at all scales, and in all regions, including the Great Lakes and international locales. These topics are crucial as coastal communities pursue new, more robust strategies to effectively manage, protect, and restore their resources in a changing climate. Ensuring these resources, and the communities that rely on them, are resilient now and into the future will be a particular focus.


The Summit is an international gathering encompassing all disciplines within the coastal and estuarine restoration and management communities. RAE and CSO worked with 200 partnering and supporting organizations to develop and host the Summit and we saw nearly 1,000 attendees from the restoration and management communities: non-profit and community organizations, indigenous peoples, academic and research institutions, businesses with an interest in the coast, and agencies from all levels of government. Restoration and management practitioners, citizens and community leaders, consultants, scientists, educators, planners, engineers, students, volunteers, philanthropists, program managers, field staff, contractors, regulators, and others involved in restoration and management efforts participated.

2018 Theme: Investing in our Coasts: Environment, Economy, Culture

America’s coasts continue to be a focal point for gauging our nation’s well-being on many fronts. They highlight the challenging juxtaposition between bounty and scarcity, urban and rural, impacted and pristine. Combined, they represent a patchwork of successes, opportunities, and lessons learned. The Summit theme explored the wide variety of roles our coasts play, ranging from economic to environmental to cultural. People — and companies — are drawn to the coast for a range of reasons, most of which have merit in their own right. When these goals align, then management and restoration can proceed in relative harmony. It is when they do not align that challenges become more difficult. Interwoven throughout this theme is the understanding that a changing climate and all that goes with it (including sea-level rise and Great Lakes level fluctuation) play a substantial role. In these times, we cannot have a conversation about the future of our coasts without keeping in mind the importance of what the future may hold. How we choose to manage and invest in our coasts, including the communities and ecosystems within them, will have profound impacts to future generations. The Summit provides a forum for dynamic, thoughtful, and insightful discussions as to what has occurred, what is happening now, and how that knowledge should frame our decisions moving forward.

Past Conferences

2020 Fort Lauderdale, FL
2018 Long Beach, CA
2016 New Orleans, LA
2014 Washington, DC
2012 Tampa, FL
2010 Galveston, TX
2008 Providence, RI
2006 New Orleans, LA
2004 Seattle, WA
2003 Baltimore, MD

View additional information from the 2016 Summit here.

View additional information from the 2014 Summit here.

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