Aug 5 2009 -- Sep 5 2009 Newport to be NOAA's New Pacific Home Port
The McArthur II, one of the NOAA vessels assigned to the Marine Operations Center-Pacific. NOAA photo.The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has chosen Newport as the new home base for its Pacific fleet. Currently the fleet is housed at Lake Union, Washington. Pending the signing of a lease with Port of Newport officials, the move will take place in July of 2011.
Oregon Shores is delighted that Newport will be the new home of NOAA's Marine Operations Center. This will change Newport's future in a dramatic way. The city has already moved down the road of a clean ecological future that encompasses tourism and marine research, through the Hatfield Marine Science Center and the Aquarium. The addition of NOAA's Pacific fleet will strengthen Newport's link with marine science and climate research, and give the Newport area a new outlook after years of limited possibilities after the timber boom ended.
Oregon Shores hopes to work closely with the Port of Newport to make this opportunity a reality. Currently, we are working to ensure that the Port rebuilds the deep-water fishing fleet's dock in an environmentally sound manner, by taking out the two old concrete cargo ships (the Pasley and Hennebique) that form part of that dock. We are urging the Port to build the new dock to landward of the existing one, and open up deepwater fish habitat that was lost after WWII when the old dock was built. Despite failure to receive ARRA funds for the reconstruction, the Port probably has enough money to complete the work from the bond measure passed by voters in 2006. About $2 million remains of the bonds.
NOAA will require its own dock (as well as warehouses and main buildings). The NOAA dock will probably be built on the other side of Yaquina Bay from the fishing dock, near Hatfield Marine Science Center. Since the Port will now be seeking permits for both docks from the same agencies, Oregon Shores plans to work with the Port to ensure that both applications are as environmentally sound as possible. The permitting agencies (U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and Oregon Department of State Lands) and resource agencies (National Marine Fisheries Service and Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife) will probably be evaluating the two dock proposals together, in order to consider the cumulative impacts to Yaquina Bay. The more environmentally sound both proposals, the less impact each will have, individually and cumulatively.
Links to other online media:
8/5/2009: Eugene Register Guard article, by Winston Ross
8/4/2009: Portland Oregonian article, by Lori Tobias
8/4/2009: NOAA's official press release
Articles on topic 'Port of Newport':
Jun 23 2012 ‘Un-Wanted Ad’ Posted for Tsunami-Borne Invader
Jun 18 2012 Volunteers Needed to Cope with Invaders
Jun 11 2011 Learn About NOAA in Newport This Saturday
May 24 2011 NOAA Introduces Itself with Talks on Research
Aug 5 2009 Newport to be NOAA's New Pacific Home Port
Jun 30 2009 Port of Newport Unsuccessful in Applying for ARRA Funds
May 9 2009 Port of Newport Applies for Stimulus Funds for Bay Project
Apr 1 2009 Governor replies to Oregon Shores, Friends of Yaquina Bay
Mar 16 2009 Audits Division Scolds OECDD over Port of Newport Grant
Jan 30 2009 Port of Newport Considering Limited Environmental Remediation
Dec 9 2008 Public Meeting Thursday Evening Addresses Newport Dock
Nov 25 2008 Port of Newport Considering Limited Environmental Remediation
Feb 7 2006 Shipbreaking in Yaquina Bay