February 2016

Gulf Science and Restoration Programs Release Three Year Funding Calendar

Science and restoration programs working in the Gulf of Mexico released a three year calendar of planned funding opportunities. The calendar includes a subset of programs in the Gulf region that have received funding as a consequence of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. Read More >

SECOORA Newsletter

SECOORA's latest newsletter is available! Read about our Annual Meeting Registration, SE Coastal Resilience Grant, Update on Cape Canaveral buoys, and more

Southeast States Win Coastal Resilience Grant

NOAA Regional Coastal Resilience Grant program awarded $803,713 to the Southeast states to strengthen disaster recovery of coastal communities.

The project will improve planning for long-term recovery from storms, hurricanes and other natural disasters for Florida, Georgia, South Carolina and North Carolina. Southeast Coastal Ocean Observing Regional Association (SECOORA) Executive Director Debra Hernandez is the project PI. “I’m excited about the opportunity to work with this talented team that will be working to strengthen our coastal communities’ recovery capabilities.” SECOORA will coordinate the regional collaboration effort and oversee project management.

“Natural disasters are not constrained by state, political, or geographic boundaries,” said Robert Haywood, Federal Recovery Coordinator for FEMA Region IV. “Through this award, numerous partners in the Southeast will be working towards a collaborative approach to long-term disaster recovery that allows coastal communities to create even more vibrant economies and healthier environments after a natural disaster.”

The proposal, titled Utilizing Regional Collaboration to Implement the National Disaster Recovery Framework in South Atlantic Coastal Communities,is supported through a NOAA grant of $803,713 and matching funds of $453,746 provided by states, local governments, private sector, and non-profit partners.

Debra Hernandez, SECOORA Executive Director, stated the individual projects implemented will:

  • Support disaster recovery planning on the ground in coastal communities in each state,
  • Encourage private sector engagement in recovery planning, and
  • Build capacity in the region to expand and improve recovery planning.

Partners included in the project are listed below.

State Partners Regional partners, led by the SECOORA Federal partners
  • Florida Department of Emergency Management
  • Georgia Department of Natural Resources
  • South Carolina Emergency Management Division
  • North Carolina Emergency Management
  • S.C. Sea Grant Consortium
  • The Nature Conservancy
  • Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Atlantic Business Continuity Services
  • Anderson Insurance Associates
  • The Insurance Institute for Business and Home Safety
  • Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and
  • NOAA’s Office for Coastal Management.


Dr. Jeffrey Payne, Acting Director of the NOAA Office for Coastal Management, said, “The challenges confronting our nation’s coastal communities are incredibly complicated - effective solutions are going to require strong science, ingenuity and collaboration if they are going to safeguard and ensure the future vitality of our economy and valuable natural resources.”

The NOAA Regional Coastal Resilience Grant program supports regional-scale projects that enhance the resilience of coastal communities and economies to effects of extreme weather, climate hazards, and changing ocean conditions.  In 2015, NOAA received 132 proposals totaling $105 million in requested funding and announced $4.5 million in recommended funding for six coastal resilience projects, including the Southeast project.  Dr. Payne said, “We are excited about what these partnership projects will accomplish at the local level and the positive impact this program will have on our nation.”


For additional information:
Debra Hernandez
(843) 906.8686


More information: http://webqa.coast.noaa.gov/resilience-grant/projects/ 

Registration Open for 2016 Annual Meeting

Please register for the SECOORA 2016 Annual Meeting, May 18, 19 and 20, 2016 at the North Carolina State University- Jane S. McKimmon Conference and Training Center (1101 Gorman Street, Raleigh, NC 27606). 
Sponsor our meeting!
Consider increasing your organization’s exposure at the SECOORA 2016 Annual Meeting. Become a sponsor and showcase your organization’s services and products, and strengthen ties with existing clients. Contact Abbey, abbey@secoora.org, if you are interested in sponsoring.

Sponsorship Levels:


You will have 15 minutes on the program to demonstrate your project or product, exhibit space, and your organization’s logo will be printed on the program and you will receive exhibit space.


Your organization’s logo will be printed on the program and you will receive exhibit space.


Your organization will enjoy the benefits of exhibiting at the meeting.



Reauthorization Update: ICOOS Act of 2009

Reauthorization of the Integrated Coastal and Ocean Observation System (ICOOS) Act of 2009 is moving forward in both the House and the Senate.  

In early December 2015, the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee sent S.1886, the Senate ICOOS Act Reauthorization bill, to the Senate floor for consideration. Senators Wicker (R-MS) and Cantwell (D-WA) introduced S. 1886 under the name Coordinated Ocean Monitoring and Research Act in July 2015. 

In the House, Representative Young (R-AK) and Sablan (Ind- MP) introduced HR. 2744 - Integrated Coastal and Ocean Observing Act Amendments.  The House ICOOS Reauthorization bill has 26 co-sponsors, 23% of the co-sponsors are from the SECOORA region. The bill is still in committee.

Debra Hernandez, SECOORA’s Executive Director, will be heading to Capitol Hill early March 2016 to rally for more co-sponsors and talk appropriations to congressional representatives.

Prior to the ICOOS Act of 2009, there was not a coordinated approach to coastal ocean observing systems. Coastal data was collected by multiple Federal, tribal, state and local agencies, researchers and citizen groups in mismatched formats and was largely inaccessible by others. The ICOOS Act established a coordinated program to integrate and share existing data, it fills critical gaps and produces information that is accessible to a range of users from mariners to fishermen to emergency managers and the general public. IOOS is user-driven, science-based and policy neutral.


Read more on the IOOS Association website.