NROC News – monthly news and updates from NROC, its member agencies and partners.

NROC would like you to know –

  • The Fall NROC Meeting will be held Thursday, October 24th in Narragansett, RI.
  • NROC is seeking proposals for contractor assistance to provide logistics, facilitation, and event planning for regional ocean planning stakeholder engagement activities in New England. NROC is issuing this proposal in conjunction with the Northeast Regional Planning Body. Proposals are due October 7th. See Request for Proposal for details.  
  • The Coastal Hazards Committee reports that the results of the 6 awards made by NROC and the Gulf of Maine Council on the Marine Environment (GOMC) as part of its municipal resilience grants program are now accessible through the Northeast Climate Change Adaptation website (http://necca.stormsmart.org/municipal-grants/).  These grants enabled the 6 communities to focus on preparing for impacts of climate change, including coastal flooding from storms and sea level rise. In 2011, the GOMC received funding from NOAA’s Climate and Societal Interactions Program (CSI) to collaborate with NROC to examine innovative municipal approaches to climate change adaptation in the coastal zone of the Northeast and Bay of Fundy. The two-year project, Stimulate Innovation and Increase the Pace of Municipal Responses to a Changing Climate in the Coastal Zone of the Northeast and Bay of Fundy, was just completed in August.
  • The Ocean and Coastal Ecosystem Health Committee reports that the “Integrated Sentinel Monitoring for Climate Change in Northeast Marine Waters” project team will meet on Monday, October 7, from 2-4:30 p.m. at the Seacoast Science Center in Rye, NH, in conjunction with the RARGOM annual science meeting on October 8 in Portsmouth.  The sentinel monitoring project is a joint effort of NROC and NERACOOS that began in February 2013 and comprises a project steering committee and three working groups that have begun to inventory existing monitoring and observing programs in the northeast and identify key indicators and sentinel sites to monitor climate and other ecosystem changes in marine and estuarine waters from Long Island Sound to the Bay of Fundy and Scotian Shelf.  Anyone interested in this project is welcome and encouraged to attend this meeting.
  • Stay Tuned: The Ocean Planning section of NROC’s web site is being revised to provide additional information on projects, an updated calendar of events, and other changes. In the coming weeks, there will be an announcement on its availability. Additionally, the Northeast Ocean Data Portal is scheduled to be updated with new data in the next week or so (related to shipping vessel traffic, transmission lines, maintained shipping channels), with an additional update in the next month or so including the results of the recreational boating survey and commercial fishing maps.

NROC Partners would like you to know –

  • RARGOM Annual Science Meeting: The Regional Association for Research on the Gulf of Maine (RARGOM) will hold its annual science meeting on October 8, 2013, at the Holiday Inn in Portsmouth, NH.  “The 2012 Gulf of Maine Heatwave: Anamalous Year or the New Normal?” will look back at 2012 which, according to NOAA, was the warmest year ever in the Gulf and over a broad swath of the North Atlantic, and the high temperatures impacted the physical conditions, biological processes, animal distributions, and fisheries in the region.  The meeting will attempt to synthesize the causes and consequences of the 2012 “ocean heat wave” and consider what lessons can be taken from 2012 about how the Gulf of Maine will change in the coming century.  For more information on RARGOM and additional meeting details visit the RARGOM web site at http://www.rargom.org/. Via Mel Cote (EPA)
  • Northeast Recreational Boating Survey: The Associated Press recently ran a story about the Northeast Recreational Boating Survey. The survey, conducted by a partnership including SeaPlan, representatives of the boating industry, New England states and the state of New York, U.S. Coast Guard, and NROC, provides a key tool for ocean planning in the Northeast region.  Results of the survey, which was based on input from 12,000 boaters from Maine to New York, characterizes when, where, and how New Englanders motor and sail for fun. The article highlights the survey’s findings on the economic impact of recreational boating in New England–about $3.5 billion in 2012. Read the full story here. A full report, state-specific fact sheets, summary of boating industry engagement, and other related products will be made available. Please contact Nick Napoli (nnapoli@northeastoceancouncil.org) with any questions. Via John Weber (NROC)
  • Northeast Regional Planning Body: Following a series of ten public meetings throughout New England in May and June to discuss draft goals and actions for regional ocean planning, a summary of comments received at those meetings and online is now available on the RPB section of the NROC website. Also available is a compilation of all written comments submitted during the public comment period (May-July 2013). The next RPB meeting will be held November 12-13 in Boston, location TBD. Via John Weber (NROC)