During the month of November, the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) and National Oceanographic Partnership Program (NOPP) partners announced the launch of a new study, “Marine Artic Ecosystem Study (MARES) – Ecosystem Dynamics and Monitoring of the Beaufort Sea: An Integrated Science Approach.” The core of this research initiative is to improve the understanding of the Arctic marine environment through integration of physical, chemical, biological and social science, spatiotemporal dimensions, and management.
The NOPP staff attended an oversight hearing by the Subcommittee on Fisheries, Wildlife, Oceans and Insular Affairs on “Is the Midway Atoll National Wildlife Refuge Being Properly Managed.” The Midway Atoll Refuge was transferred to the US Fish and Wildlife Service in 1996 and in 2006 was designated as a National Monument. The Fish and Wildlife Service would like to continue to manage the Atoll, however it is expensive to maintain the infrastructure, continue to eradicate invasives, and operate a visitor center that would allow Veterans and others to honor and remember the Battle of Midway in 1942. Photographer Chris Jordan, also presented a short film about the nesting albatrosses and how the population is affected by lead and asbestos from old buildings, fuel from old tanks and plastic trash in the surrounding ocean.
The Office of Naval Research and NOPP announced three new funding opportunities for oceanographic modeling. It is anticipated that two or three projects may be supported within each topic area at a level of no more than $500K per year for each multi-investigator proposal over the course of three years (FY15-FY18). Partnerships between federal, university, and private research sectors are encouraged. Proposals are due January 16, 2015 at 1600 EST through grants.gov.
The annual Excellence in Partnering Award will be presented on December 16th at the American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting in San Francisco. The presentation of this award is an important opportunity to recognize the successful efforts of our partners in their ocean science research. In addition, if you are attending the AGU Meeting, please stop by the NOPP booth (booth number 2513) to say hello!