NOAA 2006-021
Contact: Jordan St. John
NOAA News Releases 2006
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NOAA budget request includes $1 billion for Ecosystems Program

President Bush’s proposed 2007 budget, announced today, includes $1,076 million for NOAA’s Ecosystem Program, including a net program increase of $107.6 million. NOAA’s total budget request is $3.68 billion, a net program increase of $345 million. Retired Navy Vice Adm. Conrad C. Lautenbacher, Ph.D., under secretary of commerce for oceans and atmosphere and NOAA administrator, unveiled the proposed budget for the Commerce Department’s National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration today.

“Fisheries provide $44 billion to the U.S. GDP annually, while coastal and marine waters support more than 28 million U.S. jobs. NOAA will work diligently to produce healthy and sustainable ecosystems that benefit society,” Lautenbacher said. “NOAA services have never been more important to the nation, and this budget request will provide increases that improve ecosystem management, among our other vital services.”

The requested amount for NOAA’s Ecosystem Program includes funding for programs that review the status of vulnerable species for listing under the Endangered Species Act, and that assess the economic effects of large-scale environmental events such as hurricanes, hypoxia and red tide. NOAA will work to develop harmful algal bloom and hypoxia forecasting and response capabilities, as well as improve protection and management of coral habitats and other marine protected areas. Among other things, the budget will increase support for fisheries in the Gulf of Mexico, start the Open Rivers Initiative for voluntary dam removal, and fund creation of a Great Lakes Habitat Restoration Program. These are in addition to NOAA’s standing mission to support sustainable fisheries and protect the nation’s marine resources.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, an agency of the U.S. Commerce Department, 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. Through the emerging Global Earth Observation System of Systems (GEOSS), NOAA is working with its federal partners and 60 countries to develop a global monitoring network that is as integrated as the planet it observes.

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