MARCO News, August 2015   

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The MARCO Management Board welcomes you to the August issue of MARCO News.
The Mid-Atlantic Advances on Regional Ocean Planning
Moves towards region's first Ocean Action Plan

The Mid-Atlantic is making significant progress towards its commitment to deliver an Ocean Action Plan for release in 2016. A major milestone this past month was the launch of work to deliver important components of the final plan; including an ecological data synthesis, a human use data synthesis and a Regional Ocean Assessment.  This progress comes on the heels of a new study in the leading academic journal Marine Policy showcasing ocean planning based on five case studies from around the world.  A series of opportunities are planned for this summer and fall to provide stakeholders more opportunities to engage, offer input and learn more about the products in progress.     Read More
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Mid-Atlantic Ocean Data Portal Launches Redesign

Links Users via Stories, Data, Mapping

MARCO and partners have launched a redesign with stunning new features for the Mid-Atlantic Ocean Data Portal - an online toolkit and resource center that helps stakeholders find and visualize ocean data through mapping. First launched in 2010 to prepare for the regional ocean planning process, the new features of the Mid-Atlantic Ocean Data Portal redesign include highlighted ocean use stories; an all new Map Groups function; expansion of the How Tuesday monthly webinar series; and enhanced organization and access to tools for exploring, designing, sharing, and comparing potential solutions to ocean planning challenges .    Read More.                                                                          
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MARCO Welcomes New Chair, Laura McKay of Virginia DEQ


MARCO is very pleased to welcome Laura McKay of the Virginia Coastal Zone Management Program as the new MARCO Chair. The Chair is a leadership position that rotates among the 5 member states at two-year intervals. Laura follows Gwynne Schultz of the Maryland Department of Natural Resources who has served as MARCO Chair for the past two years:   Read More   


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MARCO Applauds Fishery Council Move to Protect Deep Sea Corals      

MARCO applauds the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council (MAFMC) on their recent approval of an amendment to protect deep sea corals from the impacts of fishing gear in the Mid-Atlantic. If approved by the Secretary of Commerce, the amendment will create "deep sea coral protection zones" in areas where corals have been observed or where they are likely to occur. The importance and value of commercial fisheries that operate in or near areas of deep sea coral habitat were also recognized by the Council.   Read More 


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New Ocean Planning Film Features MARCO Chair, Laura McKay


MARCO Chair Laura McKay is featured in a new film on regional ocean planning from Swell Productions and Surfrider Foundation. The Next Wave is the story of ocean planning in the Northeast and the Mid-Atlantic from the unique perspective of ocean recreational users.  Read More and Watch the Film.



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Upcoming Events    


The following events may be of interest to the Mid-Atlantic ocean community:    

Check the MARCO Events Calendar regularly for event updates and new postings. 


Established in 2009 by the Governors of New York, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland and Virginia, MARCO provides a forum for our coastal Mid-Atlantic states to collaborate on shared regional priorities related to marine habitats, renewable offshore energy, climate change adaptation, and ocean water quality. MARCO initiated and oversees the Mid-Atlantic Ocean Data Portal to assist the region with ocean planning efforts. For more information about MARCO, visit our website,  


Thank you for your continued interest in MARCO. We welcome questions and feedback you may have, including content for upcoming issues of MARCO News. To provide comments or suggestions, or to join our email distribution list, please click "Join Our Mailing List" below, or contact us at [email protected].


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Photo Credits: Header (L-R): Coral, NOAA-OER/BOEM; Wind turbines, Ralf Hettler; Kayaks, Raul Rosa; Shipping container, Dan Barnes; Schooling fish, Jet Chen Tan; U.S. Naval ships, Gina Addison. Body (top-bottom): Turbine graphic, Getty iStock; Portal screen capture,; MARCO Chair team photo, Arlo Hemphill ; Deepsea corals, NOAA Okeanos Explorer Program, Our Deepwater Backyard: Exploring Atlantic Canyons and Seamounts; Laura McKay, Swell Productions "The Next Wave". Footer (L-R) Fishing boat, William Sherman; Diver, Michael Eversmier; Beach scene, Chris Parypa.