Veteran Indian River Lagoon researcher John Trefry, a professor in the Department of Ocean Engineering and Marine Sciences, offered a briefing on the lagoon at the Congressional Estuary Caucus on June 15 in the Rayburn House Office Building in Washington, D.C.
Invited by Caucus co-founder U.S. Rep. Bill Posey, and speaking before about 70 people – among the largest groups to attend a Caucus event – Trefry talked about Florida Tech’s extensive and varied research in the lagoon, how science is critical to developing engineering solutions to lagoon problems, and the importance of implementation by local, state and federal managers.
Austin Fox, an assistant professor in the Ocean Engineering and Marine Sciences department, also attended the caucus and spoke with congressional and agency staff.
The bipartisan Congressional Estuary Caucus was founded in 2017 by Posey (R-FL), and Representatives Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR), Rick Larsen (D-WA) and Frank LoBiondo (R-NJ) to promote estuary restoration and conservation. It comprises nearly 40 members representing districts along the U.S. coasts.
This briefing was dedicated to raising awareness of the importance of the Indian River Lagoon, one of the most diverse estuaries in North America and the world. Stretching 156 miles along Florida’s east coast, the Indian River Lagoon is a sanctuary for nearly 4,000 species of wildlife, an economic engine for the community, and an invaluable recreational and educational resource for residents and visitors.