Blue Guardians to provide technical and financial assistance to increase coastal resilience of SIDS

Blue Guardians is a new international partnership of Small Island Developing State (SIDS) governments, private sector technology and data providers, philanthropic foundations, multi-lateral development organizations, and conservation NGOs. The partnership is committed to providing the geospatial data, information and planning tools, technical assistance, and financial support SIDS need to develop national climate resilience strategies. It also provides an associated pipeline of investment projects to increase coastal resilience to climate change, marine and fisheries conservation, and renewable energy. Blue Guardians is raising a US $100 million multi-donor trust fund to provide participating islands with technical assistance, data acquisition, and natural resource management. Learn more at

Hollywood filmmaker’s book helps scientists communicate their work

The marine-scientist-turned-Hollywood-filmmaker Randy Olson has released a new book Houston, We Have a Narrative. The book describes some of the things scientists do wrong when communicating their work to non-scientists and provides a simple method “And, But, Therefore” for scientists to build stories about their work. The book is available for purchase at

New database integrates global ocean currents

The US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has released the Global Ocean Currents Database, which integrates ocean currents observations from a variety of instruments with different methods, resolutions, and spatial and temporal variability. The database has a tailored web application that allows users to search for ocean currents data by platform types and/or spatial and temporal ranges of interest. Access the database free of charge at

Study finds US federal agencies employing EBM practices and principles

A new paper “The status of marine and coastal ecosystem-based management (EBM) among the network of U.S. federal programs” published in Marine Policy summarizes the status of EBM for a number of US federal programs, including ones that oversee fisheries, offshore energy development, and species protection. The federal programs that were surveyed for the study employed a relatively high number of EBM best management practices and principles. The authors found substantial differences, however, in perceived and effective performances across programs, with programs that focus on the management and stewardship of natural resources for the common good (“management programs”) showing a higher level of integration of EBM approaches than programs that provide information to advance the management and stewardship of natural resources for the common good (“non-management programs”). The authors provide suggestions for further integration of EBM principles into federal programs including more and better integration of human dimension components in management planning processes and activities. The paper is available free of charge at

Report provides guidance for quality management of MSP processes

The International Council for Exploration of the Sea (ICES) has released a report “Marine Spatial Planning Quality Management System” that provides a clear structure for setting up a marine spatial planning (MSP) process. The structure provides guidance on what should be incorporated when designing and managing an MSP process and sub-processes, as well as information that should be included at different stages of a process from a quality management perspective. The report is available free of charge at

Insights from marine spatial planning symposium available

The 2015 International Marine Spatial Planning Symposium “Sharing Practical Solutions” held on 6 October 2015, in Narragansett, Rhode Island, US, was live-streamed to viewers worldwide and recorded. The program included insights from the keynote speaker Jeff Grybowski, chief executive officer of the US’ first wind farm, and the sharing of experiences and lessons learned from ocean planning practitioners from around the US as well as Canada and the UK. View videos of the proceedings at