WASHINGTON, D.C. – The following statement was issued by Elizabeth Semple, Chair of the Mid-Atlantic Regional Council on the Ocean (MARCO), in reaction to President Trump’s Executive Order Regarding the Ocean Policy to Advance the Economic, Security, and Environmental Interests of the United States

“Since 2009, the Mid-Atlantic Regional Council on the Ocean (MARCO) has worked, as a Regional Ocean Partnership, across the five states of Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, New Jersey and New York to enhance the vitality of the region’s ocean ecosystem and economy.”
“Over the past several years, MARCO States have championed major elements of regional ocean planning, including: (1) Coordination and collaboration at a Mid-Atlantic regional scale, (2) Effective engagement with all ocean stakeholders and (3) Public access to best available data and information.”   
“MARCO is ready and willing to keep moving ahead as the Mid-Atlantic’s State-led Regional Ocean Partnership to coordinate and collaborate on issues of shared regional concern.  MARCO looks forward to engaging partners across diverse interests to advance shared regional issues of importance to the states, including, but not limited to (1) the collection and analysis of marine life and habitat data including shifts in ocean species distributions, (2) the reduction and prevention of marine debris, (3) the development of indicators to measure ocean health, (4) increased consideration of the importance of non-consumptive recreation, (5) on-going  dialogues on offshore renewable energy, coastal resilience and the beneficial reuse of sand resources, (6) the continued development of a comprehensive ocean acidification monitoring network and research plan , and (7) continued operations, maintenance and updating of the Mid-Atlantic Ocean Data Portal.”
“Over the past several years, MARCO has cultivated strong and collaborative working relationships with tribal representatives, issue-based experts in federal agencies, regional associations and a wide variety of stakeholders. We look forward to hosting a forum to convene continued discussions of regional importance, on Thursday August 2, 2018 in Richmond, Virginia.  The meeting will be held at the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality, 1111 East Main Street, Richmond, VA 23219.  Additional meeting details will be posted on the MARCO website https://www.midatlanticocean.org/ when available.”

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