NOPC Statement on Release of Draft NE Ocean Plan

MAY 25, 2016


CONTACT: Brent Greenfield: (713) 337-8821;

Following today’s release of the draft Northeast regional ocean plan, National Ocean Policy Coalition Executive Director Brent Greenfield issued the following statement:

“Since the Northeast Regional Planning Body (RPB) was first established in 2012, the National Ocean Policy Coalition (Coalition) has been actively engaged in the RPB’s activities in an attempt to ensure an outcome that does not unnecessarily harm the region’s commercial and recreational interests and the jobs and economic activity that they support.  While the Coalition is still reviewing the draft document released today, the Coalition remains highly concerned that this plan and underlying process could lead to adverse economic and societal impacts and conflicts with existing decision-making processes, to the detriment of businesses, citizens, and communities across the Northeast region.

The process has already created significant uncertainty and another entity with which regulated entities must contend.  Concerns are further heightened given the regulatory impacts that are certain to result through the National Ocean Policy Executive Order requirement that federal agencies implement the plan to the maximum extent, the abbreviated public comment period for what would be the country’s first-ever regional ocean plan, the absence of details to date on how agencies intend to use and implement the plan and its related products, and the lack of a formal advisory committee that could have provided user group advice and guidance directly to the RPB.  Today’s announcement that federal agencies will not publicly describe critical details about how they will implement the plan until after the public comment period concludes adds to these concerns.  The Coalition will be closely reviewing the draft plan and related products in the coming weeks, and will provide more official comments at a later date.”

Established in 2010, the National Ocean Policy Coalition is an organization of diverse interests representing sectors and entities that support tens of millions of jobs, contribute trillions of dollars to the U.S. economy, and seek to ensure that actions under the National Ocean Policy are implemented in a manner that best benefits the National interest, including protection of the commercial and recreational value of the oceans, marine-related natural resources, and terrestrial lands of the United States.

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