Ocean Planning in the Northeast

Website for the Northeast Regional Planning Body About Northeast Regional Planning Body

Northeast Regional Planning Body

The Northeast Regional Planning Body (RPB) is responsible for developing New England’s ocean plan. The National Ocean Policy, established by Presidential Executive Order in 2010, called for the formation of nine regionally focused RPBs to better manage the nation’s oceans and coasts. New England was the first region in the nation to respond to this call, launching the Northeast RPB in November 2012.

The Northeast RPB includes representatives from the six New England states, ten federally recognized tribes, ten federal agencies, and the New England Fishery Management Council. The RPB has no authority to create new regulations. Its mandate is to create a plan and oversee its implementation, with many opportunities for public participation.

Ecosystem-Based Management Working Group

Following a successful Ecosystem-Based Management (EBM) Workshop in April 2015, the RPB called for the creation of an EBM Working Group at its sixth meeting, held on June 3-4, 2015, in Mystic, CT.

Key Documents:

September 2015 Meeting

January 2016 Meeting

July 2016 Meeting

Comment Letters

Northeast RPB News

Thursday 9/21 Northeast Ocean Health Index Workshop – POSTPONED

September 19, 2017 — The Ocean Health Index (OHI) workshop, scheduled for this Thursday, September 21, 2017, has been postponed due to potential travel difficulties.

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Ocean Planning Timeline

  • November 2012 Inaugural Northeast RPB Meeting: Develop common understanding about the RPB; provide context and lay foundation of regional ocean planning; engage stakeholders and the public, discuss initial focus.
    April 2013 Northeast RPB Meeting: Northeast RPB Meeting: Identify draft goals for regional ocean planning and mechanisms for receiving public input about those draft goals; provide opportunities for public input about topics under consideration.
    May/June 2013 Public Comment Meetings: Ten public meetings throughout New England to discuss draft regional ocean planning goals.
  • January Northeast RPB Meeting: approve goals and objectives; move forward on related tasks.
    May/June Public Engagement: Natural Resources Workshops and focused engagement to discuss progress toward goals of effective Decision-Making and Healthy Ocean and Coastal Ecosystems.
    June Northeast RPB Meeting: Review progress toward all goals.
    Fall Public meetings/workshops and Northeast RPB meeting: Feedback on progress toward each goal.
  • Spring Stakeholder Forum: Review progress on the use of marine life and ocean use data, regulatory coordination, and future scenario development.
    June Northeast RPB Meeting: Review approach to developing draft plan by considering agency use of ocean plan data products; discuss draft outline for regional ocean plan.
    Fall Northeast RPB meeting and public meetings: Review revised products for each goal; discuss future work of the RPB.
  • Winter EBM Working Group: Review progress on Draft Northeast Ocean Plan, marine life and habitat data product development, including IEAs Framework.
    Spring Northeast RPB Meeting (via webinar): Release Draft Plan for public review.
    Summer Collect public comment on the Draft Plan through public meetings and other opportunities.
    Fall September public webinar to review changes to the Draft Plan and October submittal of revised Plan to the National Ocean Council.
  • Winter Northeast RPB members and federal principals of the National Ocean Council sign Plan Adoption Memo.
    Spring See Events and Meetings
    April Informational webinar to prepare for stakeholder forum.
    May Stakeholder forum and RPB public meeting.

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