NOAA 2005-012
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Jordan St. John
2/8/05
NOAA News Releases 2005
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NOAA ADMINISTRATOR ANNOUNCES FISCAL YEAR 2006 BUDGET REQUEST

Retired Navy Vice Adm. Conrad C. Lautenbacher, Ph.D., under secretary of commerce for oceans and atmosphere and NOAA administrator, unveiled President Bush’s proposed FY 2006 budget for the Commerce Department’s National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. NOAA’s request totals $3.6 billion, an increase of six percent or $205 million over the FY 2005 request.

“The budget reflects the administration’s support for NOAA’s strategic goals, supports improved performance in NOAA and maintains essential environmental services for the nation,” said Lautenbacher.

The budget includes increases for Global Earth Observations, Ocean Commission-related initiatives, climate services and research, weather warnings and forecasts, ecosystem stewardship and satellite programs.

“NOAA is leading the global effort to better understand the complex interactions on our planet through the development of the Global Earth Observing System of Systems, along with more than fifty partner nations,” added Lautenbacher. “A robust GEOSS is critical in developing the science necessary to deliver accurate forecasts and hazard warnings, such as for tsunamis, in an ever-changing environment. The recent tragedy in southeast Asia heightened the need for a tsunami detection and warning system beyond the Pacific region and demonstrated the value of observation systems in protecting lives and property.”

Budget priorities for this year and key program increases include:

U.S. Commission on Ocean Policy

  • The FY 2006 request includes significant resources for NOAA’s ocean and coastal programs and fisheries and protected species activities in support of the president’s U.S. Ocean Action Plan. More than $1 billion is requested for these ongoing programs, including $61.2 million to address regional ecosystem research priorities at NOAA’s Sea Grants, $22.7 million in support of NOAA’s Ocean Exploration program, $32.5 million for building a fourth new fisheries research vessel and $25.4 million for fisheries stock assessment.
  • The FY 2006 request also includes increases of $1.5 million for the NOAA Coral Program and $1.5 million for the Coastal Global Ocean Observing System.

Global Earth Observations

  • $95 million in net increases to support emerging requirements for NOAA’s role in building an integrated earth observing system. Included in these efforts is a net increase of $52.6 for the Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellites to maintain continuity for this critical observing technology and $16.1M for the National Polar-orbiting Operational Environmental Satellite (NPOESS) to ensure the first satellite is available for launch by 2010.
  • $9.5 million to expand the U.S. Tsunami Warning Network. This $24 million commitment over two years will expand the current six-buoy tsunami detection network by an additional 32 buoys in the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, Caribbean basin and Gulf of Mexico; procure three redundant buoys off the coast of Alaska as backups and 38 new sea-level monitoring/tide gauge sensors; provide 24/7 operations at NOAA’s Tsunami Warning Centers; upgrade 20 seismometers used to improve tsunami detection; and expand the Tsunami Ready program to improve community preparedness.

Ecosystems

  • $19.6 million for actions aimed at protecting Pacific salmon stocks.
  • $4.6 million to help expand Fisheries Stock Assessments and improve data collection, which will help address longstanding shortfalls in fisheries science, fishery monitoring and fishery data management capabilities.
  • $5.5 million for Economic and Social Science Research to expand NOAA’s capability to estimate the economic impact of fishing on local state and national economies, as well as assess the human impacts from, and responses to, fisheries management decisions.
  • $6.3 million to support expanded use of Vessel Monitoring Systems for monitoring and enforcement of closed areas for the protection of endangered species, critical habitat and rebuilding and maintaining sustainable fisheries.
  • $1.5 million for the NOAA Coral Reef Program to work with states and territories to address threats to the nation’s coral reefs.

Climate Observations and Services

  • $3.2 million to expand the Tropical Atmosphere Ocean array and the Pilot Research Moored Array in the Tropical Atlantic into the Indian Ocean. This expansion will enhance NOAA’s capability to accurately document the state of ocean climactic conditions and improve seasonal forecasting capability.
  • $3.5 million to continue building and maintaining a Global Ocean Observing System that will 1accurately document climate-scale changes in ocean heat, carbon and sea level.
  • $2.0 million to develop new Climate Reanalysis Data sets that will enable us to explain more adequately the causes for observed climate variability and change.
  • $2.0 million for Aerosols, Clouds and Climate Change, for expanded research efforts to quantify how aerosols influence climate change by their interactions with clouds.

Weather Warnings and Forecasts

  • $5.6 million for the NOAA All Hazards Weather Radio to install 17 new transmitter stations in high risk areas and refurbish more than 400 transmitter station installed in the early 1970s.
  • $7.4 million in programs that support the Western Governor’s Association’s call for a National Integrated Drought Information System, including $4 million for a Water Resources Initiative to support development of a nationwide water resources forecasting capability, which will provide America with economically valuable water and soil conditions. This increase supports a national water quality monitoring and prediction system.
  • $3.8 million to accelerate nationwide implementation of ozone Air Quality forecasting capability from FY 2009 to FY 2008 and to deliver an initial particulate matter forecasting capability by FY 2011.

Facilitate Inter-modal Transportation

  • $2 million for the National V-Datum Program to modernize NOAA’s shoreline measurement and hydrographic surveying for navigation safety as well as enable sharing of geospatial data among federal, state and local governments and academia.
  • $1.9 million to continue NOAA’s efforts to provide Electronic Navigational Charts covering all U.S. Waters by 2008. This funding will allow NOAA to increase the number of ENCs available to mariners by more than 25 percent.
  • $1.5 million for the National Current Program to ensure that NOAA’s Annual Tidal Current Table predictions are accurate. Accurate knowledge of tidal currents is essential for safe and efficient navigation, helping vessels avoid collisions and improving transit efficiency through U.S ports.
  • $1.1 million for Aviation Weather to continue a 10-year plan to improve U.S. aviation safety and provide economic efficiencies by providing state-of-the-art aviation weather observation and forecast products.

Facilities Maintenance & Construction

  • $6.2 million to continue construction on the NOAA Center for Weather and Climate Prediction, which will bring NOAA scientists and academic researchers together in collaboration to enhance weather forecasts.
  • $3.9 million NOAA Facility Management and Construction for facility maintenance and planning.

The Commerce Department’s National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is dedicated to enhancing economic security and national safety through the prediction and research of weather and climate-related events and providing environmental stewardship of our nation’s coastal and marine resources.

On the Web:

NOAA FY 2006 proposed budget: http://www.publicaffairs.noaa.gov/budget2006/

NOAA: http://www.noaa.gov

NOAA Strategic Plan: http://www.spo.noaa.gov

General public may send questions on the budget to: AskNOAABudget@noaa.gov