From the Desk of the Acting Assistant Administrator

The nation's ocean and coastal agency: Supporting coastal communities, promoting a robust economy, and protecting coastal and marine ecosystems.


GIS Day 2018

To acknowledge the importance of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) in the world today, we celebrate GIS Day annually on the second Wednesday of November. GIS Day provides an international forum for users of GIS technology to demonstrate real-world applications that are making a difference in our society.


Hurricane Michael

Last week, NOS was once again called to service as Hurricane Michael ravaged the Florida Panhandle and portions of Georgia and Virginia. Here is an update of our recent activities in support of response and recovery to Hurricanes Michael and Florence.


Hurricane Florence

The past week has been challenging for many of us dealing with Hurricane Florence. From preparations and evacuations to storm predictions and damage assessments, we have weathered this major event and have accounted for all of our personnel in the affected area. Here are a few examples of recent NOS activities supporting response and recovery to this historic storm.


Digital Coast Academy

You may know that the Office for Coastal Management’s Digital Coast website was developed to meet the unique needs of the coastal management community. What you may not be aware of is that in addition to providing data and predictive tools, the site offers a wealth of learning resources through its Digital Coast Academy.


World Ocean Month

June is our annual celebration of National Ocean Month. We are often asked at this time of year, how many oceans are there? There’s only one! The ocean is the defining feature of our planet, covering approximately 70 percent of Earth’s surface. Our one ocean is divided into five named ocean basins and is intricately connected to major lakes, watersheds, and waterways through a vast and complicated drainage system. No matter where you live, you are connected to our one global ocean.

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Real-time Data Helps Miami Seaport Safely Bring in Ships

On April 3, 2018, several NOAA leaders joined me and local officials at PortMiami to dedicate a new Physical Oceanographic Real-Time System (PORTS®) comprised of three offshore buoy-mounted current meters that will enhance navigation safety for the Miami seaport. In Miami, ship pilots face strong currents from the Gulf Stream as they enter the channel. The new PORTS provides pilots with critical real-time information that they need to make navigation decisions, using a new technology configuration that makes the meters more reliable, more cost-efficient, and extends their range offshore. The information is especially important as cargo ships and cruise ships become larger and carry more goods and people.

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International Year of the Reef

2018 is the third International Year of the Reef—a platform to highlight the importance of coral reefs. Covering less than one percent of the planet, coral reefs are the home to 25 percent of marine species and supply food to millions of people. They are also vital to our ocean economy, providing billions of dollars in services, such coastal protection, jobs, tourism and more.

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Year in Review

I’d like to take a moment to celebrate the outstanding accomplishments across our programs in FY 2017. More than 40 examples of our success appear in the newly released Fiscal Year 2017 Year in Review. Here are some numbers that help tell the story of the year.

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Dr. Steve Thur Named New NCCOS Director

I am pleased to announce that Dr. Steven Thur has been selected to serve as Director of the National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science (NCCOS) effective December 10, 2017. Dr. Thur brings a high degree of scientific rigor and an emphasis on organizational excellence that we believe will advance the work of NCCOS and coastal science throughout the National Ocean Service.

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