Center for American Progress Action

AVAILABLE FOR COMMENT: CAP Action’s Conathan on National Ocean Policy, House Natural Resources Committee Hearing
Press Release

AVAILABLE FOR COMMENT: CAP Action’s Conathan on National Ocean Policy, House Natural Resources Committee Hearing

Press Contacts

  • Christina DiPasquale

Washington, D.C. — Today CAP Action’s Director of Ocean Policy Michael Conathan offered testimony before the House Natural Resources Committee on the benefits of President Barack Obama’s National Ocean Policy and is available for comment.

Excerpt from Michael Conathan’s remarks as prepared:

As Congressman Ed Markey (D-MA) noted in his opening statement at this committee’s last hearing on the National Ocean Policy on October 4, 2011, planning is a fundamental, necessary part of organizing an efficient society. As coastal populations increase, and new uses of ocean space emerge, conflicts will inevitably arise, and we as a nation must develop a means of predicting and resolving those conflicts if we want to maximize economic efficiency from our oceans while safeguarding the health and vitality of the marine environment. Doing so will require coordination and conversation–bringing a diverse group of voices to the table, representing all potential uses of ocean space, to determine the highest and best use of our nation’s last frontier. In addition, it will provide the added benefit of improving the science used to support management decisions.

Contrary to attempts to color the policy as restrictive “ocean zoning,” a comprehensive, collaborative approach to managing our ocean resources will help prevent multi-use conflicts, increase efficiency, and ensure ocean economies continue to support American jobs and a high quality of life. The National Ocean Council should be given the necessary logistical and financial support to implement the National Ocean Policy for the benefit of American jobs, economic growth, and security. Scare tactics and insinuations of doomsday scenarios will only force us into an entrenched, cloistered process that fails to acknowledge the reality that as ocean space becomes more crowded, we will need to accommodate more uses and more users.

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To speak with Michael Conathan on this topic, please contact Christina DiPasquale at 202.481.8181 or cdipasquale@americanprogressaction.org.

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