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What do you know about NOMEC? And why is NOMEC important? NOMEC is the National Ocean Mapping, Exploring and Characterization program, a national effort focused on mapping the United States Excusive Economic Zone or EEZ.

bathymetry data of the New England Seamounts
New bathymetry data of the New England Seamounts collected with the EM 304 MK II variant during the 2021 North Atlantic Stepping Stones: New England and Corner Rise Seamount Chain (EX-21-04) expedition, overlaid on the Global Multi-Resolution Topography Data Synthesis grid. (Credit: NOAA Ocean Exploration)

On Sept 17, 2021, the UN Decade on the Ocean hosted a virtual online program entitled, “Mapping, Exploring, and Characterizing U.S. Waters.” The event included a number of conversations about NOMEC that explored how it is connected to the UN Decade and furthers the understanding of how the ocean is an integral part of nature-based solutions to climate change and other issues facing global society. 

High level speakers Special Envoy Secretary John Kerry and Dr. Jane Lubchenco held a conversation with Amanda Netburn, White House Office of Science and Technology Policy and Executive Director of the NOMEC Council, on global ocean solutions. A follow up conversation between NOMEC Co-Chairs included John Haines (DOI’s USGS Program Coordinator for Coastal and Marine Hazards and Resources) and Dr. Vicki Ferrini (international seabed mapping representative). The conversation focused on connecting domestic and international partners in mapping, exploring, and characterizing the ocean as well as sharing the data and information needed to support NOMEC and the greater global ocean community.

The one-hour event finished with a live Q&A period. The recording is available on NOAA’s Integrated Ocean and Coastal Mapping (IOCM)’s website:

Watch the program:

Learn more about USGS Deep Sea research and capabilities:

Learn more about the UN Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development, “The Science We Need for the Ocean We Want”:

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