NOS Assistant Administrator Weekly Update
On April 1, program office accounting codes changed for almost all activities. The Resource Management Division in NOS headquarters has worked closely with each program's budget contacts to ensure that default accounting codes in systems like WebTA, Travel Manager, and the purchase card system are updated. If you have any questions, please contact Robert Ransom or Renee Galloway.
Why the change? The new accounting codes reflect the new budget structure for our line office. We have reduced the number of program/project/activities (PPAs) by more than half as part of our ongoing effort to improve coordination and collaboration among activities that support NOS priorities.
NOS's budget now reflects three sub-programs under the Operations, Research, and Facilities (ORF) account:
- Navigation, Observations, and Positioning (includes NOAA's physical oceanographic activities)
- Coastal Science and Assessment (includes research, assessment, and monitoring programs)
- Ocean and Coastal Management and Services
I would like to thank all of those responsible for implementing these changes!
Holly A. Bamford, Ph.D.
Assistant Administrator for Ocean Services and Coastal
Zone Management, National Ocean Service
NOAA and Partners Release New Surface Current Web Product
Using data from the U.S. IOOS, CO-OPS recently released a new High Frequency (HF) Radar web product that provides near real-time surface current observations and tidal current predictions in estuarine and coastal locations. The product offers broad spatial coverage of surface currents in areas vital for marine navigation and is now available in Chesapeake Bay and San Francisco Bay, with additional locations to follow. High Frequency Radar surface current data also benefits search and rescue, oil spill response, harmful algal bloom monitoring, water quality assessments, ecosystem assessments, and fisheries management. It provides additional information in areas covered by NOAA's Physical Oceanographic Real-Time System (PORTS®), a system that provides real-time water level, current and meteorological observations for safe navigation.
Contact: Linda.Austin@noaa.gov or Jennie.Lyons@noaa.gov
Sea Level Rise Research Supports Gulf of Mexico Sentinel Site Cooperative
An NCCOS-funded study is investigating the ecological effects of sea level rise in the Gulf of Mexico. The effort is the focal point of the Northern Gulf of Mexico Sentinel Site Cooperative, which is a partnership established to advance sea level rise prediction and assessment capabilities. The cooperative seeks to improve coastal data and research products to facilitate planning and adaptation to sea level rise and inundation. By leveraging existing activities and assets, the cooperative can enhance and expand sea level rise partnerships, improve scientific understanding of sea level rise and its impacts, and foster science-based decisions supporting coastal inundation planning and adaptation efforts.
NOAA Planet Stewards Project Inspires Award-winning Student Activists
On March 31, the high-school-age founders of Students for Sustainability arrived in Washington, D.C., to meet with Members of Congress. The Port Townsend, Washington, students founded the organization after studying climate change as part of NOAA's Planet Stewards Project educational program. Their business plan to restart the school's recycling program and save their small school district more than $10,000 annually, and to plant more than 3,500 native species plants in their community, won awards from the State of Washington and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. While en route by bus, ferry, and train for their cross-country trip, the students collected petitions from other students at 55 stops between Seattle and the U.S. Capitol, where they advocated for government policies that promote sound science.
PRiMO Co-Hosts Pacific Resilience Conference
The Building Communities of Practice for Resilience conference, recently held in Honolulu, Hawaii, highlighted collaborative adaptation and lessons learned in the science and management of Pacific resilience. Over 250 attendees included leading scientists, Nobel laureates, political leaders, managers, and stakeholders from across the U.S. and throughout the Pacific Islands region. A special guest was President Anote Tong of Kiribati. The Pacific Risk Management `Ohana (PRiMO) and the non-profit Partnership for Pacific Resilience hosted the conference. Personnel from NOAA served in PRiMO leadership roles, led sessions, helped with meeting logistics, and coordinated President Tong's schedule. PRiMO, created by CSC's Honolulu office, serves as a vehicle for Pacific Islands region scientists, managers, and stakeholders to learn the latest in resilience concepts.
Volunteers Improve U.S. Height Models During National Surveyors Week
By sharing GPS field data via the NGS Online Positioning User Service (OPUS), volunteer surveyors from across the United States contributed to improving the nation's height system during National Surveyors Week, held during the week of March 16. Users shared a record number of GPS data files collected on existing elevation stations (geodetic bench marks). These data, along with photos and descriptions of the stations, were automatically processed and validated by OPUS, with station positions being updated to centimeter-level accuracy. With NGS' OPUS and the Height Modernization program, users gain improved access to heights and better local height accuracies. Local survey work acquired using GPS technology is added to the NGS-maintained National Spatial Reference System, streamlining the efforts required to access the nation's height system.
Coast Survey Unveils New ENC Online Enhancements
This week, Coast Survey added important features to NOAA Electronic Navigational Charts (ENC) Online. This tool, launched last November, lets users see electronic navigational chart features on a seamless map without the special equipment usually required for ENCs. With the recent update, users can now set depth and safety contours, change between simplified and traditional symbols, change the background color (for ease of viewing under different light conditions), and turn off certain features. NOAA ENC Online is not certified for navigation. It does NOT fulfill chart carriage requirements for regulated commercial vessels under Titles 33 and 46 of the Code of Federal Regulations.
Sanctuary Research Coordinator Honored
On March 29, a research coordinator with NOAA's Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary was inducted into the Women Divers Hall of Fame (WDHOF). Emma Hickerson began working with the sanctuary as a volunteer in 1996 and has logged more than 1,200 scuba dives and 150 scientific expeditions during her 17 years as the site's research coordinator. The WDHOF is an international nonprofit professional honor society whose member contributions span a wide variety of disciplines, including science and exploration.
Restoration Projects Finalized for N.Y. Natural Resource Damage Assessment Case
NOAA and co-trustees have finalized an addendum to the Final Restoration Plan summarizing the restoration projects selected to compensate for habitat degradation related to releases of hazardous substances from the Mattiace Petrochemical Site in Long Island, N.Y. As a result of the natural resource damage settlement, the following projects will be implemented along the north shore of Long Island: 14 acres of coastal forest restoration at the Theodore Roosevelt Sanctuary and Audubon Center in Oyster Bay Cove; three acres of grassland and wet meadow habitat restoration at a formerly industrial site in Cold Spring Harbor; 500-1000 linear feet of restoration along Beekman Creek in the Town of Oyster Bay; 22 acres of grassland restoration at the Underhill Preserve in the Town of Jericho; and one acre of tidal wetland restoration in Hempstead Harbor Cove in the Town of North Hempstead.