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The Top 5 Challenges Facing the New NOAA Administrator

This article was originally published by the Center for American Progress. As former astronaut Kathryn Sullivan takes over NOAA, she faces challenges worthy of a rocket scientist. Today, the Senate confirmed the appointment of Dr. Kathryn Sullivan to be the new administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. She replaces Dr. Jane Lubchenco, who…

Obama Doesn’t Need Congress to Move Forward on Clean Energy

A week before President Barack Obama’s State of the Union address, a new report says Obama could advance key measures of his Climate Action Plan with or without the cooperation of Congress. “When they believed a national situation warranted action, some past presidents interpreted their authority broadly and exercised it aggressively,” the report said. “That is the practice of presidential authority Americans…

Four Conservation Experts Look Back on and Beyond 40 Years of the Endangered Species Act

Since the Endangered Species Act (ESA) was signed by President Nixon on Dec. 28, 1973, the Act has helped recover more than 30 species, prevented the extinction of 99 percent of the species it protects and currently protects more than 2,140 species. Conservation and learning at accredited zoos and aquariums, in partnership with local and…

Impacts Far Reaching as U.S. Marks Sandy Anniversary

A year ago this week, Superstorm Sandy made a lasting mark on the northeast United States. Many areas continue to recover from the storm, the deadliest and most destructive of the 2012 hurricane season. The effects of Sandy’s destruction linger in many areas where it made landfall, but the storm has had wider-ranging impacts, including influencing how we predict and prepare for future…

Pictures: The Sun’s Recent Flares

The sun appears to be throwing a bit of a tantrum. With three powerful solar flares and a giant cloud of super-hot plasma hurled toward Earth in the past week, it looks as if our home star is awakening from slumber as it approaches the natural peak of its 11-year cycle, the solar maximum. (Related: “Solar…

The Bottom Line: Five Myths About Fishing

From the Chesapeake Bay to Florida’s Gulf Coast, recreational fishing is big business for many communities along the Eastern Seaboard. In fact, more than one-third of America’s 11.8 million saltwater anglers live in the region. I count myself among them. This national pastime is much more than throwing a line off a local pier. In…

The Bottom Line: Some Promising News for Bluefin Tuna

U.S. policymakers know they need to limit the number of Atlantic bluefin tuna caught and killed by surface longlines, which can stretch 40 miles with more than 750 baited hooks and float unattended for up to 18 hours. After all, the western Atlantic bluefin population is down 64 percent from its level in the 1970s,…

The Bottom Line: Time to Protect Pacific Forage Fish

I learned long ago that it pays to plan ahead before I hit the water for a day of fishing. Knowing the tides, watching the weather, and reading the fishing blogs for the latest intelligence can make all the difference. Similarly, my time at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and on Capitol Hill…

What Should We Do With the Blue?

This weekend NOAA and the Aquarium of the Pacific are hosting “Ocean Exploration 2020: A National Forum,” aimed at creating a clear plan for ocean exploration projects. Follow along at #OE2020 and help shape the future.

Big Things Come from Small Beginnings: The Mystery of the Sick Sea Lions

  On a cold, foggy morning along the Malibu coast, a small brown lump emerges from the sea and waddles ashore. I spot it from 100 yards away, but already my dog, Cooper, is at a full run toward the baby sea lion. I scream at him to stop, but it’s too late: The thin,…

Space Exploration Dollars Dwarf Ocean Spending

This article was originally published by the Center for American Progress. “Star Trek” would have us believe that space is the final frontier, but with apologies to the armies of Trekkies, their oracle might be a tad off base. Though we know little about outer space, we still have plenty of frontiers to explore here…

The Bottom Line: For New England’s Fishing Fleet it’s Déjà vu All Over Again

Note: This is a special post coauthored by Peter Baker and Lee Crockett As an editorial in the Boston Globe observed, things did not look good for the coming fishing season. Fishermen were “returning from three or four days’ hauling on Georges Bank with near-empty holds.” And while other regions of the country were successfully…

NOAA, Others Predict Active Atlantic Hurricane Season

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) released its predictions for hurricane activity, ahead of the official start of the storm season June 1. In the Atlantic, NOAA forecasts an active season with 13 to 20 named storms. Seven to 11 of those storms, NOAA said, could actually develop into Category 1 or higher hurricanes. As many as three…

Carbon Dioxide Milestone Revised by NOAA

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) announced last week that carbon dioxide concentrations at the Mauna Loa Observatory in Hawaii surpassed the milestone 400 parts per million for a sustained period. NOAA has since revised the figure—on the basis of computer analysis—saying its May 9 readings actually remained fractions of a point below the historic level, coming in at…

Fishermen Develop New Business Models to Save Their Communities

Theresa Peterson has been an Alaska fisherman for three decades. During summer break one year in college she went to Homer, Alaska, to work in a cannery. She lived in a tent with friends. But after four days of being cooped up in the factory she decided she wanted to get a job on a…