National Ocean Council; Development of Strategic Action Plans for the National Policy for the Stewardship of the Ocean, Our Coasts, and the Great Lakes

On July 19, 2010, President Obama signed Executive Order 13547 establishing a National Policy for the Stewardship of the Ocean, our Coasts, and the Great Lakes (“National Policy”). That Executive Order adopts the Final Recommendations of the Interagency Ocean Policy Task Force (“Final Recommendations”) and directs Federal agencies to take the appropriate steps to implement them. The Executive Order creates an interagency National Ocean Council (NOC) to strengthen ocean governance and coordination, identifies nine priority actions for the NOC to pursue, and adopts a flexible framework for effective coastal and marine spatial planning to address conservation, economic activity, user conflict, and sustainable use of the ocean, our coasts and the Great Lakes.

Purpose: The NOC is announcing its intent to prepare strategic action plans for the nine priority objectives identified in the Final Recommendations and is requesting input on the development of these strategic action plans. (For general information about the NOC and a copy of Executive Order 13547 and the Final Recommendations, please see: Public comments will inform the preparation of the strategic action plans. All comments will be collated and posted on the NOC Web site.

Public Comment: The NOC is seeking public input as it develops the strategic action plans for the priority objectives. To be considered during the development of the draft strategic action plans, comments should be submitted by April 29, 2011. Draft strategic action plans will be released for public review in the summer of 2011, allowing additional opportunity for the public to provide comments. Plans are expected to be completed by the end of 2011.

In this public comment period, the NOC is interested in comments that address the opportunities, obstacles, and metrics of progress relevant to each of the priority objectives. Comments should take into account that the strategic action plans should address the key areas identified in the Final Recommendations, including, as appropriate, the importance of integrating local, regional, and national efforts.

Objective 5 is “Resiliency and Adaptation to Climate Change and Ocean Acidification: Strengthen resiliency of coastal communities and marine and Great Lakes environments and their abilities to adapt to climate change impacts and ocean acidification”

Federal Register, 24 January 2011. Web site.

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