Biden administration invests in engagement with ocean data firms

Published on
September 26, 2023
Biden administration invests in engagement with ocean enterprise

The administration of U.S. President Joe Biden is investing in a new initiative to develop deeper engagement with the commercial and non-profit sector and build public-private partnerships.

The Department of Commerce and NOAA will provide the Marine Technology Society (MTS) USD 3.9 million (EUR 3.7 million) to establish a multi-year framework to engage the ocean enterprise, a category that includes public, private, nonprofit, tribal, and academic organizations that provide data on the world’s oceans.

“Ocean data and information powers America’s robust marine economy," U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo said. "This investment will help accelerate growth and advance partnership opportunities within the ocean information sector as it works to develop solutions to pressing climate and resilience challenges."

The Ocean Enterprise Initiative will build on the work done in the Dialogues with Industry program launched jointly by MTS, the Global Ocean Observing System (GOOS)/UNESCO, and NOAA, which hosted a series of conversations on how outside entities can better engagement with the government on producing ocean data. MTS will continue to facilitate dialogues and gatherings under the Ocean Enterprise Initiative, but it will also help define ocean enterprise requirements for NOAA and find market opportunities for public-private partnerships. MTS will consolidate community recommendations and turn them into action items for the government, creating a pipeline for feedback to NOAA.

“Our mission-driven approach will address specific topics such as ocean carbon dioxide removal technologies and real-time ocean data telemetry standards, as well as broader national priorities like ocean-driven renewable energy transformation, marine ecosystem conservation, and the cultivation of the Blue Economy's future workforce,” MTS CEO Chris Ostrander said.

“The value of the ocean enterprise has increased rapidly in the last decade in response to changing environmental conditions and the expanding blue economy, and NOAA is proud to be a leader in this space,” NOAA Chief Scientist Sarah Kapnick said. “By joining forces with the Marine Technology Society we will help identify enterprise priorities into the future as this important sector continues to grow in response to societal needs.”

The funding, which is part of Biden’s Investing in America agenda, comes from the USD 2.6 billion (EUR 2.4 billion) provided for coastal resilience and fisheries support under the Inflation Reduction Act.

Photo courtesy of Saildrone

Associate Editor

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