Government Takes Step Toward Science-Based Arctic Ocean Planning
Alaska Interagency Working Group Establishes Framework for Integrated Arctic Management
Juneau, AK — Today, White House officials released an important report on Integrated Arctic Management (IAM), drafted by the Alaska Interagency Working Group. The IAM report was commissioned by the Obama Administration to help further its commitment to long-term planning for the U.S. Arctic Ocean based on comprehensive, science-based decisions. The report establishes a pathway that will better account for, and prioritize, the health of the ecosystem in decisions about the expansion of industrial activities in the Arctic.
In response to the release of the report, Susan Murray, Deputy Vice President, Pacific of Oceana issued the following statement:
“Arctic ecosystems, home to people, whales, seals, walrus, birds and fish, face threats ranging from climate change and ocean acidification to shipping, fishing, and oil and gas activities. The IAM report shows important progress towards considering the future of the Arctic holistically. The traditional piecemeal approach to decision-making misses the big picture and has failed in the Arctic.
“Oceana is identifying and mapping Important Ecological Areas in the U.S. Beaufort and Chukchi seas. Understanding and protecting important areas is one facet of good ocean management, and we are encouraged by this report that the government will prioritize this approach. It is imperative to integrate science with local and traditional knowledge to create the platform for informed decision making that helps maintain and build the resilience of Arctic ecosystems.”
Oceana is the largest international advocacy group working solely to protect the world’s oceans. Oceana wins policy victories for the oceans using science-based campaigns. Since 2001, we have protected over 1.2 million square miles of ocean and innumerable sea turtles, sharks, dolphins and other sea creatures. More than 550,000 supporters have already joined Oceana. Global in scope, Oceana has offices in North, South and Central America and Europe. To learn more, please visit www.oceana.org.
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