The NOAA RESTORE Science Program has released a summary report of the input it received during the virtual engagement sessions which the program hosted in August and September of 2013. In total, the program hosted 16 sessions which were attended by 149 people. The sessions were open to the public. During each session, a short overview of the program was presented and attendees had their questions about the program answered. Participants were then asked a series of targeted questions to provide input on research and observing needs in the Gulf of Mexico.
The input gathered from these sessions was used to further develop the program’s science plan framework which was released on December 12, 2013 and is now being considered in the development of the full science plan for the program. The program anticipates holding additional virtual engagement sessions in the summer of 2014 to gather input on the science plan following its release for public comment.