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NERACOOS News: November 2013
This Issue:
Annual Meeting
Wave Forecast
Summer 2013
Survey Results
Delegation
Ocean Acidification

Upcoming Events
Join us December 5, 2013 for our Annual Meeting
 
"Ocean Observing in a Changing World," the NERACOOS annual meeting, will be held on December 5, 2013 at the Holiday Inn in Portsmouth, NH. NERACOOS will bring together regional and national ocean observing leaders to discuss the future of ocean observing and how it can help address critical marine issues. For more information, including the meeting agenda, please click here. Don't forget to register by November 20, 2013. 
Register Now!
Wave Observations and Forecasts: Critical Information For All Mariners
 
It’s fall in New England which means there’s still a chance of a late hurricane, and winter nor’easters are right around the corner. Ocean storms this time of year can present serious challenges to maritime activities. The delivery of accurate and timely wave forecasts is critical for safe and efficient marine operations. NERACOOS provides several tools that deliver wave forecast and observation information to mariners so that they can use this information in planning their operations: 

Wave forecast page provides a map view of predicted wave conditions in the Gulf of Maine.
Wave and Water Level Forecast / Observation Viewer allows a user to select a buoy from the map (see image to the right) and view a graph of observed wave heights that are compared to forecasted conditions.
- Wind and wave forecast tool delivers an easy-to-use graphical forecast of winds and waves conditions from around the region.
- Regional buoy conditions tool allows a user to look at current wave and other ocean conditions in the Gulf of Maine.
 
The primary NERACOOS wave forecast is delivered by the Bedford Institute of Oceanography who operates a sophisticated wave forecast model named Wave Watch III. This model delivers two-day predictions of wave conditions including wave height, period and direction.

Summer 2013 Water Temperatures
 
In the fall of 2012 NOAA's Northeast Fisheries Science Center reported that â€œDuring the first six months of 2012, sea surface temperatures in the Northeast Shelf Large Marine Ecosystem were the highest ever recorded.”  This warm ocean water trend continued throughout 2012 and resulted in various impacts including an early molting of lobster in the Gulf of Maine and a brief shut down of nuclear power plant located near Long Island Sound.
 
The question that’s been on the tip of everyone's tongue is how did the summer of 2013 compare to 2012? NERACOOS recently attended the RARGOM (Regional Association for Research on the Gulf of Maine) annual meeting titled, The 2012 Gulf of Maine heatwave: anomalous year or the new normal? where this very question was addressed. The general consensus was that 2012 was an anomalous warm year for ocean waters, however scientists also reported a long term warming trend within the Gulf of Maine. The NERACOOS buoy array will continue to be a critical component to monitoring this warming trend and ocean conditions in the northeast. 
 
Check out the NERACOOS climatologies 
below, what do you think? 
Gulf of Maine: Buoy I
Monthly mean water temperature at 1 meter depth in 2013 (orange line).
Long Island Sound: Execution Rock
Monthly mean water temperature at 1 meter depth in 2013 (orange line).
Click here to see how the climatology compares at different locations or depths!
The Results Are In
 
This August we conducted a web survey to learn more about how you use NERACOOS. Thank you everyone for taking the time to complete the survey, using these results we can get a better idea of how to improve NERACOOS for you! We wanted to share some of the preliminary results with you. 

The majority of our website users in August are using NERACOOS information for some type of recreational activity or for commercial fishing. With 80% of respondents indicating that they access the information year round, and 62% indicated that they use NERACOOS at least once a week. We also received a lot of great feedback on the website. There are a lot of data to sort through, but as we learn know more we'll keep you updated. NERACOOS depends on these surveys so we can improve the delivery of information to you and other stakeholders. If you have any suggestions, email NERACOOS at info@neracoos.org.
NERACOOS and New England Delegation

Since our inception NERACOOS has depended on federal funding to support the collection and delivery of real-time ocean and weather observations in the Northeast. We rely heavily on you, our stakeholders for stories, pictures and feedback to help convey the critical need and value of the observing system. This summer we had the opportunity to share some of your stories with federal officials and delegates from the Northeast including: Congresswoman Carol Shea-Porter (New Hampshire), Nancy Sutley (Chairwomen of the White House Council on Environmental Quality), Senator Elizabeth Warren (Massachusetts) and two of Senator Angus King’s (Maine) regional staff members. Thank you to our partners who made these visits possible; the University of Maine, University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, Piscataqua Region Estuaries Partnership, and National Weather Service, Grey Forecasting Office. Opportunities like these to connect with local, state and federal delegates are critical to continue carrying out the NERACOOS mission. The more we hear from you about the value of NERACOOS, the better we can relate these stories to the delegation to promote ongoing support and improvements to the observing capability in the Northeast. Email us now with your suggestions and stories! 
Are You Interested in Learning More About Ocean Acidification in the Northeast?
 
The Northeast Coastal Acidification Network (NE-CAN) represents a nexus of scientists, federal and state agency representatives, resource managers, and affected industry partners dedicated towards coordinating and guiding regional observing, research, and modeling endeavors. The purpose is to better identify critical vulnerabilities, particularly with respect to regionally important and economically significant marine resources. If you are interested in participating in or want to find out more please visit www.neracoos.org/necan. There you can join the NE-CAN list-serve to keep up to date with ocean acidification activities in the region. The first webinar will be on Tuesday November 12 at 10 am Eastern with Aleck Wang from WHOI giving the big picture for the East Coast. After you sign up for the list-serve, you’ll get more information on the webinar details.
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