Long-term Priorities

The Program’s long-term priorities for the Gulf of Mexico ecosystem are:

Steps Used to Identify Long-Term Priorities

Using the legislative requirements for the NOAA RESTORE Science Program as the boundaries for determining long-term priorities, the Science Program reviewed numerous science needs assessments prepared for the Gulf of Mexico over the past several years. The Program then consolidated common priorities from among all the assessments. The Program also hosted engagement events and held extensive meetings with stakeholders, including representatives from the Gulf States Marine Fisheries Commission, Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council, universities, federal and state agencies, and non-governmental organizations, to gather additional input which was incorporated into the priority identification process. The priorities were then further refined by their connection to an identified management or restoration need, linkage to the Science Program’s mission and goal, and whether or not the priority duplicated a priority from another Gulf of Mexico program. This process resulted in a set of long-term priorities which are linked to identified management and restoration needs and anticipated outcomes consistent with the scope of the program.