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How we work

Collaborative LEadership

National Sea Grant Office

NOAA’s National Sea Grant Office (NSGO) administers funding to the Sea Grant colleges throughout the nation and oversees several national funding competitions. They also facilitate both the Department of Commerce designation of Sea Grant College Programs and the Sea Grant program assessment process.

The National Sea Grant Advisory Board (NSGAB)  is the National Sea Grant College Program’s Federal Advisory Committee (FAC). The Board advises NOAA and the National Sea Grant College Program on strategies to address the Nation’s highest priorities in terms of the understanding, assessment, development, management utilization and conservation of ocean, coastal and Great Lakes resources.

The Sea Grant Association (SGA) is the non-profit organization made up of the 34 Sea Grant program directors as well as several network leaders that gives a formal and collective voice to the university-based partners of the program.

Three-Prong Approach

Sea Grant uses a three-tiered approach to achieving its mission:

  • Research: to expand knowledge and answer critical questions
  • Education: to train a coastal and marine workforce
  • Extension: to connect science to those who can use it

Focus Areas

Healthy Coastal Ecosystems

The United States manages millions of square miles of coastal ecosystems that support a variety of recreational, commercial and subsistence activities. Sea Grant helps residents, natural resource managers and businesses protect and restore healthy coastal habitats for continued ecosystem and public well-being.

Environmental Literacy & Workforce Development

Sea Grant works to create a diverse workforce trained in marine science, technology, engineering, mathematics, law and policy. Training programs and education materials help build an environmentally literate workforce that understands and utilizes best available science to make informed decisions.

Guiding Documents

Identifying and addressing the needs of coastal communities

Every four years, the National Sea Grant College Program taps into its vast network of scientists, engagement professionals, stakeholders, and federal partners to identify and address the needs of coastal communities around the country.

A strategic plan is developed by representatives from the Sea Grant Network to produce high-quality science and inform management of coastal resources in ways that balance human use with environmental health.

The strategic planning process identifies core values and focus areas that drive efforts to address the priorities established by coastal communities.

Strategic Plans

Sea Grant, in partnership with NOAA Research and NOAA Fisheries, has prepared a Programmatic Environmental Assessment (PEA) to serve as a framework to analyze the potential impacts on the natural and human (social and economic) environment from aquaculture research and development projects funded by federal financial assistance award programs, including the anticipated environmental impacts of current and future related initiatives and decisions. Related documentation can be found in the list below.

Environmental Compliance Information for Sea Grant

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