NOAA Announces Funding to Support Ocean Observing in Central, Northern CA 

May 30, 2008

NOAA’s Integrated Ocean Observing System (IOOS) is awarding $1,395,763 in fiscal year 2008 funding to support ocean observing efforts in Central and Northern California.
Funding will be directed to the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute, where Steven Ramp, program director for the Central and Northern California Ocean Observing System, will oversee development and management of regional needs for coastal and ocean information by monitoring environmental conditions, helping manage protected marine areas and delivering data and information to customers as requested. Underwater vehicles, buoys, and other ocean data tools will be used to respond to emergencies such as outbreaks of toxic algae, oil spills, and search and rescue events.
“This agreement represents another big step forward for the Integrated Coastal and Ocean Observing System, as called for in the President’s Ocean Action Plan,” said retired Navy Vice Admiral Conrad C. Lautenbacher, Ph.D., under secretary of commerce for oceans and atmosphere and NOAA Administrator. “This year’s award is a great example of NOAA’s dedication to supporting regional ocean observing efforts, as well as our commitment to work with our regional partners.”
 “Regional partnerships are critical to the success of a national Integrated Ocean Observing System,” said Zdenka Willis, NOAA IOOS program director. “With increased understanding of our oceans and coasts comes an increased ability to keep our nation safe, our economy secure, and our environment healthy and productive.” 
This money supports NOAA’s efforts to develop a national IOOS, a vital tool for tracking, predicting, managing, and adapting to changes in our coastal and ocean environments. This network of people and technology is pulling coastal and ocean data and information together, so it is easily accessible from one source and can be used by scientists and decision-makers to get a ‘bigger picture’ view of environmental change.

The Central and Northern California region is one recipient in an anticipated series of IOOS grants across the nation this year, totaling $20.4M. These grants support the continuation of 17 multi-year projects awarded in 2007, as well as new efforts in 2008.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, an agency of the U.S. Commerce Department, is dedicated to enhancing economic security and national safety through the prediction and research of weather and climate-related events and information service delivery for transportation, and by providing environmental stewardship of our nation's coastal and marine resources. Through the emerging Global Earth Observation System of Systems (GEOSS), NOAA is working with its federal partners, more than 70 countries and the European Commission to develop a global monitoring network that is as integrated as the planet it observes, predicts and protects.