This week, Mayor Bloomberg and Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell announced that Jamaica Bay will be home to a new environmental research center called the Science and Resilience Institute. Among other plans, the 10,000 acres of federal and city-owned parks in and around Jamaica Bay will now be overseen by a new Jamaica Bay-Rockaway Parks Conservancy.

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The new Institute is expected to become a top-tier research center to better understand urban ecosystems and their adjacent communities. City officials said that one of the new institute’s first projects led by the City the University of New York consortium would be intensive research on climate change and its impact on our natural systems with aims to specifically restore Jamaica Bay.

“Jamaica Bay is one of the greatest natural treasures any city has within its borders, and our Administration is working hard to make the bay an even greater, stronger, and more resilient natural resource for decades to come,” said Mayor Bloomberg in a press release. “The new consortium we’re announcing today is an all-star team of research institutions and non-profits who will do important work to protect and preserve urban ecosystems from development and from the effects of climate change.”

Jamaica Bay of course is home to some of the five borough’s only natural flood barriers including wetlands, salt marshes, and beachgrass covered sand dunes. After Hurricane Sandy, the New York City Department of Parks & Recreation decided to partner with the National Park Service to form the Jamaica Bay-Rockaway Parks Conservancy to hopefully restore and bolster some of those crucial resources.