Sullivan Urges Alaskans to Apply for New Marine Debris Foundation Board

NOAA seeking applicants to board founded by Sullivan’s 2020 Save Our Seas 2.0 Act

WASHINGTON—U.S. Senator Dan Sullivan (R-Alaska) today encouraged Alaskans to apply to serve on the twelve-member Board of Directors of the newly-established Marine Debris Foundation, a charitable and nonprofit organization that will support the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and other entities in addressing the global crisis of trash entering the ocean. The foundation was established by the Save Our Seas 2.0 Act, authored by Sen. Sullivan and signed into law on December 18, 2020. 

“Many of the preeminent experts and activists on the front lines of the global marine debris crisis are Alaskans, and it’s not difficult to see why,” said Sen. Sullivan. “Our state has more coastline than the rest of the United States combined and, as a result, we see the devastating impacts of garbage in the oceans first hand. NOAA needs the expertise and insights that Alaskans have to make the Marine Debris Foundation a success, which is why I’m strongly encouraging all of those who are interested and qualified to apply. Ultimately, there is a strong case to be made for this foundation to be based in Alaska, but first we need to ensure the perspectives of Alaskans are well represented on the board so that our state continues to serve as a centerpiece of the global fight to clean up the oceans and protect our coastal ecosystems.” 

According to NOAA, the agency is searching for twelve individuals to represent diverse points of view on the assessment, prevention, reduction and removal of marine debris. The skills, responsibilities, qualifications and experience being sought by NOAA and details on how to apply are available in the Federal Register notice

Applicants have until June 30, 2021 to apply.

The Save Our Seas (SOS) 2.0 Act is composed of three primary pillars:

  • Strengthening the United States’ domestic marine debris response capability with a Marine Debris Foundation, a genius prize for innovation, and new research to tackle the issue.
  • Enhancing global engagement to combat marine debris, including formalizing U.S. policy on international cooperation, enhancing federal agency outreach to other countries, and exploring the potential for a new international agreement on the challenge. 
  • Improving domestic infrastructure to prevent marine debris through new grants for and studies of waste management and mitigation. 

SOS 2.0 builds on the success of the Save Our Seas Act, introduced by Sens. Sullivan andSheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) in the Senate, and Representatives Suzanne Bonamici (D-Ore.) and Don Young (R-Alaska) in the House, and signed into law by President Donald Trump in October 2018. 

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