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Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) introduces Digital Coast Act

from NSPS

NSPS is pleased to announce the Senate introduction of a bill, S. 2890, authorizing a full "Digital Coast" program in the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). The bill would create a coordinated and comprehensive national mapping effort for coastal, Great Lakes, and territorial waters of the United States. Senator Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) introduced the "Digital Coast Act of 2014" on September 18. The "Digital Coast" is a geospatially enabled project to improve coordination and support work with stakeholders to identify geospatial priorities; improve coordination of coastal mapping and management activities; use standards and standardized methods for data acquisition, processing, and distribution to ensure broadest utility of data; promote best practices when applying geospatial data for coastal decision making; and contract for the collection and creation of quality non-navigation feature data sets to include: shoreline change, satellite and aerial imagery, land use and land cover maps, benthic habitat mapping, terrestrial topography, shallow water bathymetry, and submerged aquatic vegetation. The bill would build on the current "project" and authorize a full program. The introduction of the Digital Coast Act by Senator Baldwin compliments a bi-partisan effort in the U.S. House of Representatives by Rep. C.A. "Dutch" Ruppersberger (D-MD) and Rep. Don Young (R-AK), cosponsors of Digital Coast Act of 2013, H.R 1382. NSPS Executive Director Curtis Sumner was quoted in a Sen. Baldwin's fact sheet in support of the legislation. Sumner said, "The provisions of the Digital Coast Act will significantly enhance the Digital Coast project through the creation of a sustainable program to utilize geospatial technologies to map and monitor coastal waterways of the United States, providing an invaluable benefit to the public and to the professionals whose charge is to protect their health, safety and welfare." Joining Sen. Baldwin as original cosponsors were Senators Mark Begich (D-AK), Mazie Hirono (D-HI), Barbara Mikulski (D-MD), Angus King (I-ME), Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), and Maria Cantwell (D-WA). S. 2890 has been referred to the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation. more

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