News and Updates Archive

April, May, June 2010


June 2010

 

House Hearing on NPOESS Transition

On June 29, the House Committee on Science and Technology, Subcommittee on Investigations and Oversight (Chair, Representative Brad Miller, D NC-13) held a hearing on “Setting New Courses for Polar Weather Satellites and Earth Observations.” The hearing reviewed the actions that NOAA, NASA, and DOD are taking in response to the President's direction to restructure the NPOESS program, and provided an update on transition activities. NOAA’s Deputy Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere, Mary M. Glackin, testified and a copy of the written testimony may be viewed on the Congressional Testimony page.

 

Congress Notified of Fishery Council Appointments

On June 23, the Secretary announced the appointment of 19 new and returning members to the eight regional fishery management councils. The newly named or reappointed Members will begin their terms on August 11. Senate, House, and Committee staff for all coastal states were notified by NOAA’s OLIA of the appointments via phone calls and emails. All Governors who submitted nominations for the Councils were also informed of the final selections.

 

 

Representative Baird
Representative Ros-Lehtinen

Representative Ros-Lehtinen Visit with NOAA Leadership

On June 22, Representative Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R FL-18) met with the Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere and NOAA Administrator, Dr. Jane Lubchenco, and other NOAA leadership during a luncheon in Miami, Florida. The meeting provided an opportunity to discuss Representative Ros-Lehtinen’s interests and priorities.

 

 

House Oceans Caucus Hosts Marine Debris Briefing

On June 22, the House Oceans Caucus hosted a marine debris briefing for all interested Senate and House staff in the Capitol in Washington, DC. Representative Sam Farr (D CA-17), Co-Chair of the Caucus, served as host and staff from NOAA’s National Ocean Service, Marine Debris Division, spoke about the program at the federal level and NOAA’s collaborations with federal, NGO, and intergovernmental partners.

In addition, briefings were held for staff in the offices of Representative Jose Serrano (D NY-16), Representative Steve Israel (D NY-2), and Representative Nita Lowey (D NY-18) that included information on  marine debris projects in Long Island.

 

Representative Baird
Representative Baird

Representative Baird Visits Gulf

On June 20-21, Representative Brian Baird (D WA-3), Chair of the House Committee on Science and Technology, Subcommittee on Energy and Environment, was joined by Committee staff during a visit to the Gulf for a first-hand view of response efforts, including NOAA’s. Representative Baird flew over of the spill area on June 20 aboard a US Coast Guard helicopter and was accompanied by NOAA scientists and staff. He also received a series of briefings from NOAA and other responders on various issues including plumes, marine mammals, and overall operations.

On June 21, Representative Baird took a boat tour of marsh and wildlife areas and was joined by NOAA scientists as well as other federal agency staff.

 

Senator Nelson Staff Fly on P3 Aircraft During Loop Current Mission

On June 18, staff for Senator Bill Nelson (D-FL) joined the scientific team aboard NOAA’s Office of Marine and Aviation Operations Lockheed WP-3D Orion based at the NOAA Aircraft Operations Center in Tampa, Florida, during a mission over the Loop Current.

 

House Committee Markup of HSIA Related Bill

On June 16, the House Committee on Natural Resources (Chair, Representative Nick Rahall, D WV-3) held a markup that included HR 2864, a bill to amend the Hydrographic Services Improvement Act (HSIA) of 1998 to authorize funds to acquire hydrographic data and provide hydrographic services specific to the Arctic for safe navigation, delineating the United States extended continental shelf, and the monitoring and description of coastal changes. The Committee reported the bill favorably to the full House with a floor vote to be scheduled at a later date.

 

House Hearing on Renewable Energy Forecasting

On June 16, the House Committee on Science and Technology, Subcommittee on Energy and Environment (Chair, Representative Brian Baird, D WA-3) held a hearing on Environmental Data and Information Services For Renewable Energy. The Deputy Assistant Administrator for Laboratories and Cooperative Institutes of NOAA’s Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research, Dr. Sandy MacDonald, testified and a copy of the written testimony may be viewed on the Congressional Testimony page.

 

House Hearing on Ocean Science

On June 15, the House Committee on Natural Resources. Subcommittee on Insular Affairs, Oceans, and Wildlife (Chair, Delegate Madeleine Bordallo, D-Guam), held a hearing on "Ocean Science and Data Limits in a Time of Crisis: Do NOAA and the Fish and Wildlife Service Have Resources to Respond?" The Acting Assistant Administrator of NOAA’s National Ocean Service, Dave Kennedy, testified and a copy of the written testimony may be viewed on the Congressional Testimony page.

 

House Hearing on Effects of Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill

On June 10, the House Committee on Natural Resources. Subcommittee on Insular Affairs, Oceans, and Wildlife (Chair, Delegate Madeleine Bordallo, D-Guam), held a hearing on "Our Natural Resources at Risk: The Short and Long Term Impacts of the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill." The Director of NOAA’s National Ocean Service, Office of Response and Restoration, Dave Westerholm, testified and a copy of the written testimony may be viewed on the Congressional Testimony page.

 

Representative Jones Presents NOAA Excellence Awards Senator Merkley and Representative Blumenauer Visit With Awardees

On June 10, Representative Walter B. Jones, Jr. (R NC-3) joined NOAA’s Director of Policy, Sally Yozell, to present awards at the Walter B. Jones Memorial and NOAA Excellence Awards for Coastal and Ocean Resource Management ceremony at the Rayburn House Office Building in Washington, DC. Individuals, local governments, and non-governmental organizations were recognized for their contributions to, and excellence in, estuarine, coastal, and marine management.

Prior to the ceremony Senator Jeff Merkley (D-OR) and Representative Earl Blumenauer (D OR-3) visited with the awardees.

 

Senate and House Meetings With NMFS Regional Official

On June 9-10, Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR); Senator Jeff Merkley (D-OR); staff for Senator Maria Cantwell (D-WA), Senator Patty Murray (D-WA), and Senator Mark Begich (D-AK); staff for the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation and Senate Committee on Appropriations; Representative Pete DeFazio (D OR-4), Representative Kurt Schrader (D OR-5), staff for Representative Doc Hastings (R WA-4) and for the House Committee on Natural Resources met the new Administrator for NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service, Northwest Regional Office, Will Stelle. Some of the issues that were raised include: implementation of hatchery reform, socioeconomic impacts of the Pacific catch shares program, and litigation involving the Federal Columbia River Power System biological opinion.

 

House Passes World Ocean Day Resolution

On June 9, the House passed H Res 1330, a resolution recognizing June 8, 2010, as World Ocean Day.

 

Senate Committee Passes Salmon and Sea Otter Bills

On June 9, the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation (Chair, Senator Jay Rockefeller, D-WV) held a markup of several bills, including S 817, the Pacific Salmon Stronghold Conservation Act of 2009, a bill to establish a Salmon Stronghold Partnership Program to conserve wild Pacific salmon and for other purposes. The Committee also marked up S 1748, the Southern Sea Otter Recovery and Research Act, a bill to establish a program of research, recovery, and other activities to provide for the recovery of the southern sea otter. NOAA must address sea otters under the Marine Mammal Protection Act, although they mostly fall under DOI jurisdiction. The Committee reported both bills favorably to the full Senate with a floor vote to be scheduled at a later date.

 

Senator Akaka, Representative Brown, Representative Scalise and Congressional Staff Attend Fish Fry

On June 9, Senator Daniel Akaka (D-HI), Representative Henry Brown (R SC-1), Representative Steve Scalise (R LA-1), and over 40 congressional staff joined NOAA and DOC leadership at the 35th Annual NOAA Fish Fry at the Herbert C. Hoover Building in Washington, DC.

 

House Hearing on Oil Spill Cleanup Research and Technology

On June 9, the House Committee on Science and Technology, Subcommittee on Energy and Environment (Chair, Representative Briand Baird, D WA-3) held hold a hearing on the “Deluge of Oil Highlights Research and Technology Needs for Effective Cleanup of Oil Spills.” The Incident Operations Coordinator for the Emergency Response Division of NOAA’s National Ocean Service, Office of Response and Restoration, Doug Helton, testified and a copy of the written testimony may be viewed on the Congressional Testimony page.

 

Representative edwards
Representative Edwards

Representative Edwards Keynote at Space Weather Environment Forum

On June 8, Representative Donna Edwards (D MD-4) provided the keynote address at the 4th Annual Space Weather Environment Forum in Washington, DC, which was co-hosted by NOAA, NASA, DOD, and other federal agencies and partners. Representative Edwards was joined by the Assistant Administrator of NOAA’s National Environmental Satellite, Data, and Information Service, Mary Kicza. The forum focused on the costs of space weather e and the benefits of improved space weather services with an emphasis on the anticipated needs of the user community in 2010-2020.

 

Senator Hagan Staff Visit Center for Coastal Fisheries

On June 8, staff for Senator Kay Hagan visited NOAA’s National Ocean Service, National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science, Center for Coastal Fisheries and Habitat Research in Beaufort, North Carolina. During the visit the staff were briefed about the work of the Center to conduct and support research, monitoring, assessment, and technical assistance for managing coastal ecosystems and society's use of them.

 

Hill Visits for the National Marine Sanctuary Volunteers of the Year

On June 7-8, over 20 Members of the Senate and House, and congressional staff, met the NOAA National Marine Sanctuary Volunteers of the Year. The volunteers were joined by staff from NOAA’s National Ocean Service, Office of National Marine Sanctuaries, to discuss their volunteer work at the sanctuary, and provide an overview of the sanctuary and its programs. Member offices included in these visits were:

- Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA)
- Senator Bill Nelson (D-FL)
- Senator Carl Levin (D-MI)
- Senator Daniel Akaka (D-HI)
- Senator Daniel Inouye (D-HI)
- Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA)
- Delegate Eni Faleomavaega (D-AS)
- Delegate Gregorio Sablan (D-NMI)
- Representative Anna Eshoo (D CA-14)
- Representative Bart Stupak (D MI-1)
- Representative Bill Delahunt (D MA-10)
- Representative Charlie Djou (D HI-1)
- Representative Gene Green (D TX-29)
- Representative Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R FL-18)
- Representative John Barrow (D GA-12)
- Representative Lois Capps (D CA-23)
- Representative Mazie Hirono (D HI-2)
- Representative Rob Wittman (R VA-1)
- Representative Walter Jones (R NC-3)

 

Senator Levin Event at Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary

On June 5, Senator Carl Levin (D-MI) scheduled held an event at NOAA’s National Ocean Service, Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary in Alpena, Michigan. The event was in honor of National Trails Day and highlighted the Great Lakes Heritage Maritime Trail, part of the campus of the Great Lakes Heritage Maritime Center.

 

Delegate Bordallo Visit to the Okeanos Explorer

On June 3, Delegate Madeleine Bordallo (D-Guam) visited the NOAA ship Okeanos Explorer, which stopped at the Apra Harbor, Naval Base in Guam during transit to Indonesia. Delegate Bordallo hosted a small group of island dignitaries for a tour of the ship.

Delegate Bordallo
CDR Joe Pica, Dr. Robert Underwood (Pres. U. Guam), and Delegate Bordallo talk about the capabilities of the Little Hercules ROV, an underwater robot that will serve as the ship’s “eyes in the sea” during deep sea explorations. The ROV can dive down to 4000 meters, has a two body system (ROV and camera platform) with high definition cameras on both vehicles, and will be connected to the ship via an 8000m electro mechanical cable with fiber optics. 
Delegate Bordallo
Junior Officer, ENS Matt O’Leary, explains the electronic chart display on the bridge of NOAA Ship Okeanos Explorer to Congresswoman Madeleine Bordallo.
Okeanos Explorer
NOAA ship Okeanos Explorer.

 

Representative Etheridge Visits Raleigh WFO

On June 1, Representative Bob Etheridge (D NC-2) visited NOAA’s National Weather Service (NWS), Weather Forecast Office in Raleigh, North Carolina. Representative Etheridge was briefed on the 2010 hurricane season, NWS readiness for severe weather hazards, and how the office has provided effective service for central North Carolina.

 

Senator Murray Visits NOAA’s Sand Point Campus

On June 1, Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) visited NOAA’s Sand Point Campus in Seattle, Washington, where she was briefed by staff from NOAA’s National Ocean Service, Office of Response and Restoration and NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service on NOAA’s critical role in providing coordinated scientific and technical support to the Unified Command. The visit and tour was followed by a press event held by the Senator where she highlighted NOAA’s work, which was covered by several local, press outlets.

 

 

May 2010

 

House Hearing on Oil Spill Prevention and Response

On May 19, the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure (Chair, Representative James Oberstar, D MN-8) held a hearing on the “Deepwater Horizon: Oil Spill Prevention and Response Measures and Natural Resource Impacts”. The hearing addressed the ongoing Gulf of Mexico oil spill that occurred as a result of an explosion and fire on a deepwater drilling rig, Deepwater Horizon, late in the evening on April 20 approximately 50 miles southeast of the Mississippi Delta. The Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere and NOAA Administrator, Dr. Jane Lubchenco, testified and a copy of the written testimony may be viewed on the Congressional Testimony page.

 

Senate Hearing on Response Efforts to the Gulf Coast Oil Spill

On May 18, the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation (Chair, Senator Jay Rockefeller, D-WV) held a hearing regarding the ongoing Gulf of Mexico oil spill. At this hearing, NOAA highlighted ongoing efforts underway by the agency including, but not limited to, scientific support to the US Coast Guard and Unified Command, spot weather forecasts including marine and aviation issues related to marine mammals, sea turtles, and fishery resources, and conducting a natural resource damage assessment. The Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere and NOAA Administrator, Dr. Jane Lubchenco, testified and a copy of the written testimony may be viewed on the Congressional Testimony page.

 

Representative Moran and Senate Staff Attend Buoy Event

On May 14, Representative Jim Moran (D VA-8) and staff from the offices of Senator Barbara Mikulski (D-MD) and Senator Mark Warner (D-VA) joined NOAA’s Director of Policy, Sally Yozell, at an event in National Harbor, Maryland, which celebrated the launch of the first NOAA Chesapeake Bay Interpretive Buoy in the Washington, D.C. area. The dedication ceremony was held on a pier at the National Harbor marina followed by a launch of the buoy in the Potomac River near the Woodrow Wilson Bridge. The Chesapeake Bay Interpretive Buoy System (CBIBS) provides real-time data about local weather, oceanographic and water quality conditions and marks key points along the Captain John Smith Chesapeake National Historic Trail.

Representative Moran
Representative Moran and Sally Yozell.
buoy launch

14 Members of New England/Northeast Delegation Meet with Secretary Locke and Dr. Lubchenco on New England Groundfish

On May 12, Members of the New England/Northeast Delegations met with Secretary of Commerce Gary Locke and the Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere and NOAA Administrator, Dr. Jane Lubchenco, to discuss New England groundfish issues. Those issues included groundfish quota, assistance for a groundfish permit buyback plan, crew retraining programs, loan assistance to mitigate expected economic hardships, and improved science.

Representative Cole Visits National Weather Center

On May 12, Representative Tom Cole (R OK-4) visited NOAA’s National Weather Center in Norman, Oklahoma, where he received a weather briefing and update on the recent tornadoes in the area and then a demonstration of the activities in the NOAA Hazardous Weather Testbed and VORTEX2 Operations Center. During his visit, Representative Cole thanked the staff for their good work in the face of Monday’s severe weather.

Representative Cole
Representative Cole in the Storm Prediction Center.

 

Senate and House Staff Briefing on Chesapeake Bay Order

On May 11, about 25 Senate and House staff attended a briefing on the final strategy for the Chesapeake Bay Executive Order, which was released on May 12, and NOAA is one of several federal agency partners. The new federal strategy for the Chesapeake region focuses on protecting and restoring the environment in communities throughout the 64,000-square-mile watershed and in its thousands of streams, creeks and rivers. The strategy includes using rigorous regulations to restore clean water, implementing new conservation practices on 4 million acresof farms, conserving 2 million acres of undeveloped land and rebuilding oysters in 20 tributaries of the bay. To increase accountability, federal agencies will establish milestones every two years for actions to make progress toward measurable environmental goals. These will support and complement the states’ two-year milestones. 

 

Senate and House Staff Briefing on Status of Fish Stocks Report

On May 10, over 35 Senate and House staff attended a briefing on NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service’s (NMFS) 2009 Status of U.S. Fish Stocks report. To fulfill requirements of Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation Act, NMFS must review the status of individual fish stocks and fish stock complexes on an annual basis and report its findings to Congress and the eight regional fishery management councils. In its 2009 report, NMFS reviewed the status of 522 stocks/stock complexes and put them into categories of: not subject to overfishing, subject to overfishing and/or overfished, or approaching an overfished condition. The report breaks stock status down on a regional basis. NMFS officials presented the findings of this report at the briefing.

 

Senate Confirms Dr. Larry Robinson

On May 6, by unanimous consent, the Senate confirmed the nomination of Dr. Larry Robinson, of Florida, to be Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere.

 

House Hearing on Hydrographic Services Improvement Act

On May 6, the House Committee on Natural Resources. Subcommittee on Insular Affairs, Oceans, and Wildlife (Chair, Delegate Madeleine Bordallo, D-Guam) held a hearing on HR 2864, a bill to amend the Hydrographic Services Improvement Act of 1998 to authorize NOAA to gather hydrographic data and develop products in the Arctic region. The Director of NOAA’s National Ocean Service, Office of Coast Survey, Capt. John Lowell, testified and a copy of the written testimony may be viewed on the Congressional Testimony page.

 

House Hearing on the IWC

On May 6, the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, Subcommittee on International Organizations, Human Rights, and Oversight (Chair, Representative Russ Carnahan, D MO-3) and Subcommittee on Asia, the Pacific, and the Global Environment (Chair, Delegate Eni Faleomavaegoa, D-AS) held a joint hearing on the International Whaling Commission (IWC). The Committee wanted to hear from NOAA on how we participate in the IWC and how we see the process moving forward. In addition, we were asked to comment on HR 2455, which would amend the Whale Conservation and Protection Study Act. NOAA’s Senior Advisor, Monica Medina, testified and a copy of the written testimony may be viewed on the Congressional Testimony page.

 

House Committee Approves Marianas Trench Monument Bills

On May 5, the House Committee on Natural Resources (Chair, Representative Nick Rahall, D WV-3) held a markup of HR 4493, the Marianas Trench Marine National Monument Management Enhancement Act of 2010, and HR 3511, the Marianas Trench Marine National Monument Visitor Facility Authorization Act of 2009. These bills would provide for the enhancement of visitor services, fish and wildlife research, and marine and coastal resource management related to the Marianas Trench Marine National Monument. The committee reported both bills favorably with amendments, and the bills now go to the House floor for a vote at a later date to be determined.

 

North Dakota Delegation Host Devils Lake Flood Summit

On May 3, Senator Kent Conrad (D-ND), Senator Byron Dorgan (D-ND), and Representative Earl Pomeroy (D-ND) hosted a Flood Summit in Devils Lake, North Dakota, at which the Assistant Administrator of NOAA’s National Weather Service (NWS), Dr. Jack Hayes, provided remarks. The Summit provided an opportunity for the Delegation and local officials to educate federal agencies on the challenges that exist as this region confronts record lake flooding and to lay out a plan to address the current and long term needs. Devils Lake and eastern North Dakota have seen record flooding the past two years. NWS and NOAA/OLIA have been heavily involved, providing on going information and support to the area and to ND delegation offices, and in many meetings, briefings and events over the past 16 months.

ND Summit
Left to Right: Senator Dorgan, Dr. hayes, Governor Hoeven, US Army Corps Commanding General Van Antwerp (at mic), Senator Conrad, Representative Pomeroy, and FEMA Administrator Fugate.

 

Senator Shelby
Senator Shelby

Senator Shelby Meeting on Fisheries and Oil Spill Issues

On May 3, Senator Richard Shelby (R-AL) was joined by NOAA representatives and local and state officials at a constituent meeting in Mobile, Alabama. The meeting with fishermen was an opportunity to discuss the current status of oil spill response efforts, and to answer questions.

 

Congress Notified and Briefed on Fishery Closure Due to Oil Spill

On May 2, over 80 Members of Congress and several committees were notified by NOAA’s OLIA of NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service announcement of a ten day emergency closure of all fisheries in federal waters in the Gulf of Mexico affected by the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. This initial action is effective for a period of ten days, allowing for future evaluation and possible modification based on further analysis and developments associated with the spill. Members and congressional staff continue to be briefed and inquiries responded to on the status of the closure and other fisheries’ issues in the region.

 

NOAA Amends Fishery Closure In the Gulf

On May 2, NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service announced a ten day emergency closure of all fisheries in federal waters in the Gulf of Mexico affected by the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. On May 6, NOAA amended the emergency rule to modify and expand the boundaries of the closed fishing area to better reflect the current location of the BP oil spill, and extends the fishing restriction through May 16. Over 80 Member offices and congressional Committees were notified of this action.

 

 

April 2010

 

Senator Inouye Staff Visit Tsunami Warning Center

On April 30, staff from the office of Senator Daniel Inouye (D-HI) visited NOAA’s National Weather Service Pacific Tsunami Warning Center in Ewa Beach, Hawaii. During their visit, the Senator’s staff learned about the alerts and warnings provided by the Center related to the Chilean earthquake and the response in Hawaii.

 

Representative Buchanan and Senator Nelson Staff Attend NOAA Hurricane Awareness Tour

On April 30, Representative Vern Buchanan (R FL-13) and staff from the office of Senator Bill Nelson (D-FL) attended the NOAA Hurricane Awareness Tour at its last stop in Sarasota, Florida. During the tour, NOAA hurricane experts visited five Gulf Coast cities aboard a NOAA P-3 hurricane hunter aircraft to raise awareness about storm threats and the danger of being caught without a personal hurricane plan.

 

Representative Posey
Representative Posey

Representative Posey Hosts Red Snapper Listening Session

On April 26, Representative Bill Posey (R FL-15) hosted a listening session in his district to help answer questions, and hear concerns and ideas on the science and management issues for red snapper in the South Atlantic. Representatives from NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) participated on a panel along with representatives from the Florida Wildlife Commission and other representatives from various industry sectors including, recreational fishing, commercial fishing, and the restaurant industry. Approximately 75 people attended the event, which provided NMFS the opportunity to discuss the current status of science and management actions for red snapper in the South Atlantic and also provided a forum for an exchange of ideas about the issue.

 

House Hearing on Standards of Care for Marine Mammals

On April 27, the House Committee on Natural Resources. Subcommittee on Insular Affairs, Oceans, and Wildlife (Chair, Delegate Madeleine Bordallo, D-Guam) held a hearing on the standards of care for marine mammals in aquariums and public display facilities. While the US Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service has primary authority over animals held in public display facilities, the Subcommittee used this hearing to investigate whether NOAA's role in care of captive marine mammals should be enhanced since it is the federal agency with the greatest expertise on marine mammals. The Assistant Administrator of NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service, Eric Schwaab, testified and a copy of the written testimony may be viewed on the Congressional Testimony page.

 

Deepwater Horizon
Photo: US Coast Guard

NOAA-OLIA Updates Congress on Oil Platform Explosion in the Gulf

On April 21 (ongoing), NOAA’s Office of Legislative and Intergovernmental Affairs began updating Congress on the Deepwater Horizon oil platform explosion that occurred late on April 20 approximately 50 miles off the coast of Louisiana. The updates highlighted efforts of NOAA’s National Ocean Service, Office of Response and Restoration, and NOAA’s National Weather Service. The updates will continue as we learn more about the incident. Some of the Member offices and Committees who were provided the updates include:

 

4th Annual NOAA Day on Capitol Hill - NOAA: Where Science Meets Service and Stewardship

On April 20, as the world began a week of celebrations in honor of Earth Day, NOAA presented a series of briefings during the 4th Annual NOAA Day on Capitol Hill under the theme "NOAA: Where Science Meets Service and Stewardship." These briefings highlighted some of the many challenges facing the nation and the programs and activities that NOAA and some of our partners are using to address them. The five briefings were attended by about 150 people including congressional staff and partners. Summary of the five NOAA Day briefings, speakers, and congressional hosts.

Representative Brian Baird provided opening remarks at the briefing on ocean acidification and at the briefing on oil spill response and restoration; staff for Senator Murkowski and Senator Begich both provided short remarks on the Senators' behalf. The Honory Sponsors of NOAA Day and the Honorary Hosts for the briefings were (listed alphabetically by Chamber):

Honorary Sponsors

Honorary Hosts

NOAA Day NOAA Day
Sea Level Rise briefing. Sea Level Rise briefing.
NOAA Day NOAA Day
Research We Can Use: Turning Research Technology Into Enhanced Weather Prediction briefing. Research We Can Use: Turning Research Technology Into Enhanced Weather Prediction briefing.
NOAA Day NOAA Day
Representative Baird speaking at the Ocean Acidification briefing. Ocean Acidification briefing.
NOAA Day NOAA Day NOAA Day
Oil Spill Response and Restoration: How NOAA's Science Serves Coastal Communities briefing. Arne Fuglvog speaking on behalf of Senator Murkowski. Bob King speaking on behalf of Senator Begich.
NOAA Day NOAA Day
Integrated Ecosystem Assessments: Moving From Ecosystem Science to Ecosystem Action briefing. Integrated Ecosystem Assessments: Moving From Ecosystem Science to Ecosystem Action briefing.

 

Senator Mikulski Speaks at Space Roundtable Luncheon

On April 19, Senator Barbara Mikulski (D-MD), provided remarks at the Maryland Space Business Roundtable luncheon. The Senator was joined by NOAA’s Chief of Staff, Margaret Spring, who also made remarks, and other administration officials.

 

Representative Courtney Helps NOAA Celebrate ARRA Project

On April 19, Representative Joe Courtney (D CT-2) was joined by NOAA officials, community members, and project partners to celebrate a river restoration project on the Naugatuck River in Connecticut. This project, funded through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) of 2009, created a bypass channel around a dam and opened 29 miles of historic habitat for migratory fish such as shad, herring, and alewife.

 

Senate and House Staff Briefings on OAR Labs

On April 13-14, the Program and Lab Directors from NOAA’s Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research (OAR) met with over 30 Members and/or congressional staff to provide an update on recent accomplishments and FY11 proposed activities. The Members, Members offices, and committees that received the briefing included:

Senator Udall
Senator Mark Udall (center), with some of the Lab Directors.

 

Representative Coffman Staff Visit NOAA Facilities in Boulder

On April 8, staff for Representative Mike Coffman (R CO-6) visited NOAA's facilities in Boulder, Colorado, with a particular focus on space weather. Though the facilities are not located in his district, Representative Coffman has noted the importance of predicting space weather.

 

Senator LeMieux Staff Visit NHC

On April 5, staff from the office of Senator George LeMieux (R-FL) visited NOAA’s National Weather Service National Hurricane Center (NHC) in Miami, Florida. The Senator’s staff met with NHC officials and were briefed on hurricane preparedness and NHC operations.

 

Representative Miller
Representative Miller

Representative Miller Visits WFO

On, April 5, Representative Brad Miller (D NC-13) and a district-based staffer visited NOAA’s National Weather Service Weather Forecast Office (WFO) in Raleigh, North Carolina. Representative Miller has visited the WFO previously, and for this visit, he was interested in how science and technology are helping 
his constituents. The WFO included information in their briefing on their work with North Carolina State University, which is also located in Representative Miller’s district.

 

Staff for Senator Akaka and Senate Committee Visit Tsunami Warning Center

On April 5, staff from the office of Senator Daniel Akaka (D-HI) and the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs toured NOAA’s National Weather Service Pacific Tsunami Warning Center in Ewa Beach, Hawaii, during a Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) led delegation to numerous FEMA sites in Hawaii. The primary purpose of this visit was to examine recovery efforts in Samoa and American Samoa, including FEMA's role in emergency preparedness in the Pacific Region.

Staff at PTWC
Congressional staff at the Warning Center.

 

Senate Committee Staff Visit NOAA Programs in Hawaii

On March 29 – April 2, staff from the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, the House Committee on Natural Resources, and staff to Senator Begich (D-AK) traveled to Hawaii to learn more about NOAA’s programs and activities. Items on the agenda included NOAA’s coral reef ecosystem science and management activities in the region, fisheries science and management activities, the Hawaii Undersea Research Laboratory, Office of National Marine Sanctuaries activities, and more.