Web Highlight

Web Highlight

On Dec. 29, NOAA's Monitor National Marine Sanctuary participated in a ceremony to dedicate a memorial to commemorate the Civil War ironclad, USS Monitor, and its crew. The USS Monitor sank in a New Year's Eve storm 150 years ago, carrying 16 crew members to their deaths.

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NOS Communications & Education Division

NOS Assistant Administrator Weekly Newsletter

January 3, 2013



Happy New Year, everyone!

image of NOS Assistant Administrator

Back in October, I highlighted the terrific work of the National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science and the NOAA Coastal Services Center in support of the Coastal Carolina Combined Federal Campaign (CFC) in the Charleston area. Here are some more great CFC success stories from around the country.

The National Geodetic Survey has several staff members at the NOAA Boulder office who participate in the Metro Denver CFC. The entire NOAA Boulder office has more than 1,000 people and raised more than $102,000 this year for CFC.

The Center for Operational Oceanographic Products and Services has a number of staff members in Chesapeake, Virginia, who participate in the Hampton Roads Area CFC. They reached 100% of their goal this year!

The Office of Response and Restoration staff at the NOAA Western Regional Center in Seattle participate in one of the Greater Seattle Area CFC campaigns. The Seattle OR&R staff reached 100% of their goal and pledged more than $25,000 in donations this year.

The NOAA Coastal Services Center has staff in Honolulu who participate in the Hawaii-Pacific Area CFC. Pacific Services Center employees pledged more than $6,000 this year. Their office will receive the Platinum Award this year!

Congratulations to the folks in these offices on their CFC success! My thanks goes out to all who participated so generously in this year's CFC.

David Kennedy
Assistant Administrator
National Ocean Service

Web Highlight

On Dec. 29, NOAA's Monitor National Marine Sanctuary participated in a ceremony to dedicate a memorial to commemorate the Civil War ironclad, USS Monitor, and its crew. The USS Monitor sank in a New Year's Eve storm 150 years ago, carrying 16 crew members to their deaths.

If you have an idea for a news story on the NOS website, contact us.

Web Highlight

Around NOS

NOAA Assists U.S. Coast Guard in Alaska (OR&R)

The Office of Response and Restoration (OR&R) is supporting the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) response to the grounding of the mobile drilling unit Kulluk on the rocky shoreline of Kodiak Island — critical habitat of the endangered Steller sea lion — in the Gulf of Alaska. NOAA's Alaska Scientific Support Coordinator is providing NOAA modeling products and coordinating National Weather Service spot forecasts in case the approximately 140,000 gallons of diesel fuel aboard the rig start to leak out. A NOAA information management specialist is assisting at the incident command post in Anchorage and gathering data into Arctic ERMA, NOAA's online GIS tool for environmental disaster response. At present, the rig appears intact and no leaking oil has been sighted. The next step will be to assess the rig's condition and make a plan to remove the oil on board. For more information, contact David Wesley.

NOAA Notifies Port Authority of NY and NJ of Potential Physical Oceanographic Real-Time System (PORTS®) Shutdown (CO-OPS)

On Jan. 2, NOAA notified the Port Authority of New York/New Jersey that unless maintenance funding is identified, the NY/NJ PORTS will potentially shut down on March 31. A notice of the potential change in status will be posted on the NY/NJ PORTS web page on April 1. If a new agreement and maintenance contract are not in place by Oct. 1, NOAA will stop disseminating NY/NJ PORTS data, and will remove sensors and other equipment to prevent degradation and loss. In early December, NOAA sent similar notification to the Delaware Port Authority regarding the Delaware Bay PORTS. PORTS disseminates data on water levels, currents, salinity, and meteorological parameters (e.g., winds, atmospheric pressure, air, water temperatures) that mariners need to safely navigate in and around key ports and harbors. For more information, contact Darren Wright.

NOAA Begins Process to Expand Two California National Marine Sanctuaries (ONMS)

On Dec. 20, NOAA's Office of National Marine Sanctuaries began a public process to review the boundaries of its Gulf of the Farallones and Cordell Bank National Marine Sanctuaries, which protect nearly 2,000 square miles of ocean off the coast near San Francisco. NOAA will solicit public comments on the boundary review through March 1. The proposed expansion area is north of the existing sanctuaries and encompasses Point Arena. This is North America's most intense upwelling site, where cold, nutrient-rich waters from the ocean depths rise to the warmer, sunlit zone at the surface, providing rich feeding grounds for diverse species. NOAA will review the comments to determine whether an expansion would be beneficial; if so, a draft environmental impact statement will be prepared to assess expansion alternatives. For more information, contact Sarah Marquis.

NOS Offices Collaborate to Build Sentinel Site Infrastructure at Cape Cod (NGS, OCRM)

In December, National Geodetic Survey staff and the Waquoit Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve (WB NERR) completed the first year of a study monitoring the stability of different types of wetland-based local geodetic control networks set in the deep wetland peats found at Cape Cod. As part of the NOAA Sentinel Site Program, local geodetic control networks are required to connect vertically-based field observations, such as local water levels and wetland elevation changes, however, the remote locations of many of these sites mean that traditional upland geodetic control networks are unavailable. At the conclusion of this first year, all 12 wetland rod marks established at WB NERR have been converted into dual-purpose SET marks, representing an important milestone in the completion of the required infrastructure for sea-level change sentinel sites as part of the NOAA Sentinel Site Program. For more information, contact Philippe Hensel.

Quality Assurance and Control Standards for Real-Time Dissolved Oxygen Measurements
Released (IOOS®)

The nation's ocean observing community now has quality assurance and control standards for real-time dissolved oxygen measurements collected in coastal waters. The U.S. Integrated Ocean Observing System (IOOS) recently released a community-accepted manual on best practices for quality assurance and control tests of dissolved oxygen measurements taken by five commonly used sensors in all coastal regions, including the Great Lakes. This is the first known effort that includes control steps for the sensors, in addition to those for collected data, which are critical to guaranteeing the quality of the data. The manual provides a checklist that the IOOS regions can use to implement quality assurance and control procedures, factoring in their specific, regionally-unique needs. The dissolved oxygen manual is the first in a series of 26 similar instruction manuals, each focused on a different oceanographic variable. For more information, contact Charly Alexander.

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