The National Ocean Policy of 2010 calls for regional-scale coastal and marine spatial planning (CMSP) supported by a robust data management system containing coastal and marine scientific datasets and products, and that is coordinated with state and regional data integration efforts. CMSP is a data intensive, collaborative process that depends on access to a wide range of data on the biological and physical features of the ocean, the spatial and socioeconomic characteristics of human uses of the ocean, and the administrative and regulatory mechanisms that manage the ocean. These data are often scattered among many different data providers and there are few regionally consistent analyses of these data appropriate for regional planning.
SeaPlan is part of a collaborative working group, composed of public and private organizations in the northeast that has come together to develop The Northeast Ocean Data Portal (Portal). The Portal is a decision support and information system for people involved in coastal and ocean planning in the region from the Gulf of Maine to Long Island Sound. The Portal provides access to data, interactive maps, tools, and other information needed for decision making. The primary audiences include managers, industry, stakeholders, scientists, and technical staff participating in ocean planning, although the information is useful in other ocean management and industry contexts. The Portal builds on existing efforts in the region and provides additional capacity for both state and regional-level planning efforts. The Working Group is engaging resource managers and data providers to develop regional datasets, provide them through a publicly accessible web site, and investigate the potential use of various models and tools for decision making.
Role in Ocean Planning
The Portal supports ocean planning and related management efforts at different scales within the northeast by providing data and tools, and coordinating data management efforts. The Portal is also coordinated with efforts to manage data for ocean planning in the Mid-Atlantic and nationally.
Challenges & Applications
This application and effort is regional by definition, but provides a demonstration of how data and information systems can be coordinated at different scales to inform ocean planning initiatives.
Participate in the Portal
Organizations and stakeholder groups interested in the advancement of ocean planning, and its related products and policies, are encourage to contact the Working Group and take part in this initiative.