Gouldsboro Shore is a collection of projects and volunteer activities that address and prepare for changes to Gouldsboro’s shore. The website engages Gouldsboro’s community of residents and visitors in working together to envision and prepare for coastal change. It also provides people outside of Gouldsboro with a window into what Gouldsboro is doing.
Bill Zoellick, who volunteers as project manager for some of this work, manages this website. You can contact Bill if you have suggestions or ideas to share.
The Gouldsboro Shore program now focuses on four activities aimed at helping the town respond to change along its coast.
- Restoring the Productivity and Health of Gouldsboro’s Mudflats. The Gulf of Maine’s warming waters, coupled with milder winters, changes the ecological balance along Gouldsboro’s shore. The changes are evident to Gouldsboro’s shellfish harvesters, who are witnessing dramatic changes in the struggle between green crabs and softshell clams. Gouldsboro’s shellfish committee and its Shellfish Resilience Lab have emerged as leaders in developing ways to adapt to these changes and develop new approaches to this important community fishery.
- Preserving Shore Access. Gouldsboro and other coastal communities are in the midst of a real estate boom as people discover that they can work from home, get more distance from COVID, and improve the quality of their lives when they move here. There is much that is good about this influx of new ideas and energy. But it also has the potential to disrupt long-standing, informal arrangements that have given clam harvesters and others access to the shore. Gouldsboro’s newly funded “Shore and Storm” project provides the town with opportunities to mitigate those risks.
- Anticipating and Addressing Risks to Gouldsboro’s Coastal infrastructure. Storms are becoming more frequent and more intense. At the same time, the sea level is rising. These changes increase the risk of frequent damage to roads, wharves, launch ramps, and other coastal infrastructure. The “Shore and Storm” funding enables Gouldsboro to identify the infrastructure that is most at risk over the next decades and to begin taking steps to avoid sudden loss of key infrastructure.
- Engaging the Community in Planning for Change. Gouldsboro will not succeed in responding to change unless its residents understand what is happening and why the town needs to take action, including investments in infrastructure. The Gouldsboro Shore Program is as much about listening to and learning from the town’s residents as it is about finding other expertise to help the town plan for and respond to change.