Murkowski’s BLUE GLOBE Act included in NDAA

U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski’s (R-AK) legislation to protect Alaska’s oceans and environment and the economic activity related to oceans was included in the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2023 and is expected to be signed into law by President Joe Biden.

“I’m incredibly proud that the bipartisan BLUE GLOBE Act I led with Senator Whitehouse, legislation to support our blue economy, was included in the NDAA,” Sen. Murkowski said on Dec. 19. “Through passage of the NDAA, we are investing in technologies and programs meant to better understand and monitor our oceans and atmosphere while also authorizing funding for our port and coastal infrastructure.”

Sen. Murkowski introduced the Bolstering Long-Term Understanding and Exploration of the Great Lakes, Oceans, Bays, and Estuaries Act, or the BLUE GLOBE Act, S. 140, last year along with bill sponsor U.S. Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI).

According to a bill summary provided by Sen. Murkowski’s office, the BLUE GLOBE Act will advance the development of new marine technology and strengthen the federal maritime workforce in support of responsible stewardship of America’s oceans, bays, Great Lakes, and estuaries. The bill directs existing federal interagency committees focused on oceans to improve domestic and international coordination, enhance data management and accessibility, and accelerate ocean data and monitoring innovation, the summary said.

In addition, the legislation establishes a new ocean innovation prize and assesses the need for an Advanced Research Project Agency–Oceans. The legislation also supports innovative technology to better address Illegal, Unreported, and Unregulated (IUU) fishing. 

“From protecting Alaska’s fishermen to advancing ocean monitoring and technology innovation, I’m proud to see this bipartisan effort includes so many provisions which place a priority on Alaska’s waters,” said Sen. Murkowski, who is co-chair of the Senate Oceans Caucus.