Wicker: Ocean Monitoring Bill Approved by Committee

Legislation Includes Priorities for Gulf Coast and State Universities

December 9, 2015

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Roger Wicker, R-Miss., today announced that his legislation to reauthorize the foundation for the U.S. Integrated Ocean Observing System (IOOS) has passed unanimously out of the Senate Commerce Committee. Wicker introduced the proposal, titled “Coordinated Ocean Monitoring and Research Act,” S.1886, in July.

“The information provided by this system yields more accurate weather forecasts and provides critical real-time data on the storm tides and surges associated with severe weather systems,” Wicker said. “In addition to the clear benefits for those living on the Gulf Coast, IOOS supports a wide range of missions across the ocean monitoring spectrum – from safe marine operations to protecting fisheries and aquaculture. I am hopeful that the full Senate will take action on this proposal soon.”

IOOS is made up of a partnership of 17 federal agencies and 11 regional associations, providing scientists and researchers with vital information about the nation’s coasts and oceans, as well as the Great Lakes.

Ocean modeling teams based at Stennis – made up of the Navy, the GCOOS-RA, University of Southern Mississippi, Mississippi State University, NOAA, and others – coordinate to develop the best physical and ecosystem models on the Gulf. The NOAA National Weather Service uses the Navy model results for their public safety hurricane forecasts.