Long Beach NMFS Office to Remain Open Despite Merger

In early April, I looked at the merger of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) National Marine Fisheries Service‘s two West Coast regions (the Southwest region headquartered in Long Beach and the Northwest Region headquartered in Washington state). NOAA has now stated it will not close down its regional office of the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) located in Long Beach despite the proposed merger, which is a cost-cutting initiative estimated to save $3 million in management costs. The merger of the two regions is one of a number of proposed cost-saving consolidations within NOAA.

NOAA’s announcement came in response to Congressman Alan Lowenthal‘s (D-CA 47th District) concerns expressed at at a House Natural Resources subcommittee hearing. The move to keep the Long Beach office’s open is generally seen as positive step for effectively managing California’s fisheries. 47th Congressional District includes Long Beach, Garden Grove, Signal Hill, Cypress, Westminster, Rossmoor, Los Alamitos, Stanton, and parts of Lakewood, Buena Park, and Avalon.

“My constituents are worried that a consolidation of offices would reduce their access to Fisheries management and services. I would like to know: can you assure me that the Long Beach office will stay open? And, that California, with over 1,000 miles of coastline, will continue to have access to the essential Fisheries resources this Long Beach office provides.” -Congressmember Alan Lowenthal as quoted in the Long Beach Post today

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About Ret Talbot

Ret Talbot is a freelance writer who covers fisheries at the intersection of science and sustainability. His work has appeared in publications such as National Geographic, Mongabay, Discover Magazine, Ocean Geographic and Coral Magazine. He lives on the coast of Maine with his wife, scientific illustrator Karen Talbot.
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