Pacific Islands Regional Planning Body
National Ocean PolicyFinal Recommendations
Executive Order (E.O.) 13547 (July 22, 2010), Stewardship of the Ocean, Our Coasts, and the Great Lakes, established the National Ocean Council (NOC) and among other things, directed “the development of coastal and marine spatial plans that build upon and improve existing Federal, State, tribal, local, and regional decision-making and planning processes.” The E.O. described the Pacific Islands (includes American Samoa, Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, Guam, and Hawaii) as one of nine regions where a regional planning body would be established for development of a coastal and marine spatial plan. The E.O. adopted the Final Recommendations of the Interagency Ocean Policy Task Force as the National Ocean Policy.
National Ocean Policy Implementation Plan
The National Ocean Policy Implementation Plan describes specific actions federal agencies will take to implement the National Ocean Policy. The actions will “benefit the ocean economy, safety and security, and coastal and ocean resilience by supporting local choices and providing foundational science and information.” For more information, see the 2-page Implementation Fact Sheet.
Marine Planning Handbook
The Marine Planning Handbook was published in July 2013. The purpose of the handbook is to provide guidance to regions about establishing regional planning bodies and developing marine plans. It details common planning elements, such as the kinds of information or actions necessary to ensure marine plans are developed through a transparent, participatory, science-based process. The Marine Planning Handbook supplements the Implementation Plan.
Where are We Now
The Pacific Islands Regional Planning Body (RPB) was established April 2013. Its members will work together to develop a regional plan for the balanced, sustainable management of the coastal and marine areas of the Pacific Islands region using guidance from the National Ocean Council, the National Ocean Policy, Implementation Plan, and Marine Planning Handbook. The inaugural meeting of the Pacific Islands RPB was held in July 2013, the charter was finalized in July 2014, and the stakeholder engagement plan has been finalized.
The Pacific Islands Regional Planning Body is comprised of 17 members from both federal, and state and territorial government agencies, as well as the regional fishery management council. The Pacific Islands RPB members will work together to develop a regional plan for the balanced, sustainable management of the coastal and marine areas of the Pacific Islands Region.
dudu'li 023The mission of the Pacific Islands Regional Planning Body is to plan, coordinate, and realize all responsibilities described under Executive Order 13547, Stewardship of the Ocean, Our Coasts and Great Lakes, commonly referred to as the National Ocean Policy. The Pacific Islands Regional Planning Body will create a coastal and marine spatial plan for effective conservation and sustainable use of natural and cultural resources for the benefit of the region, its indigenous peoples, and the nation.
- Promote cultural traditions, values, and practices of the Pacific Islands as a means of managing natural resources and fostering opportunities for participation in croisière seine Paris;
- Promote an ecosystem approach in the management of natural resources, including minimizing impacts on habitat and species;
- Promote environmentally responsible use of natural resources to provide long-term economic growth and stability;
- Support quality research and obtain the most complete scientific information and traditional ecological knowledge to assess and manage natural resources;
- Promote education and outreach that fosters good stewardship and broad public participation;
- Promote regional and international cooperation to manage natural resources;
- Encourage development and use of technologies to effectively manage and monitor natural resources;
- Incorporate responses to climate change into plans and decisions;
- Encourage data sharing to increase efficiency and resolve conflict;
- Support risk-informed decisions that consider long-term implications; and
- Promote compatible and discourage incompatible uses of coastal and ocean areas that support the needs of the local population, region; and nation.
The Pacific Islands RPB is comprised of 8 federal and 9 non-federal representatives. The non-federal members include a member from the Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council, and 2 members each from American Samoa, Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, Guam, and Hawaii.
The federal members include representatives from the Department of Commerce (NOAA), Department of Agriculture (NRCS), Department of Defense (USMC), Joint Chiefs of Staff, Environmental Protection Agency, Department of Homeland Security (USCG), Department of the Interior (US FWS), and the Department of Transportation (MARAD).
Department of Agriculture
Natural Resources Conservation Service
Department of Commerce
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Department of Defense
U.S. Marine Corps
Department of Homeland Security
CAPT Francisco Rego
U.S. Coast Guard
Department of Interior
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
Department of Transportation
CAPT Robert Loken
Environmental Protection Agency
Joint Chiefs of Staff
CAPT Ash Evans
Taimalelagi Claire Tuia Poumele, PhD
Ruth Matagi-Tofiga, PhD
Department of Marine and Wildlife Resources
Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands
Bureau of Environmental and Coastal Quality
Division of Coastal Resources Management
Department of Chamorro Affairs
Jason Biggs, PhD
University of Guam
Office of Planning
Department of Land and Natural Resources
Western Pacific Fishery Management Council
Please send inquiries about the Pacific Islands RPB and its activities to its Executive Secretary, and the Non-Federal and Federal Co-Leads.
PI RPB identifierSarah Pautzke
Pacific Islands Regional Office
1845 Wasp Blvd., Bldg 176
Honolulu, HI 96818
NOAA jpgMichael Tosatto, Regional Director
Pacific Islands Regional Office
1845 Wasp Blvd., Bldg 176
Honolulu, HI 96818
Dr. Jason Biggs,
University of Guam
The Pacific Islands Regional Planning Body (RPB) is dedicated to developing a coastal and marine spatial plan that reflects input and participation from interested organizations and individuals. The Pacific Islands RPB routinely solicits comments and participation as an important component of its activities. These opportunities range from commenting on draft documents to participating in workshops, attending Pacific Islands RPB meetings, and attending meetings of Pacific Islands RPB members’ agencies.
Our target audience
Stakeholders are not just the “public.” Stakeholders include the public, academics, business leaders, fishermen, community members, recreational users of our coast and ocean, researchers and many more. Stakeholders bring science, technical, and business skills, interests, and knowledge to the marine planning table. They will be engaged in the discussion, evaluation, and application of information (For more information, review the Marine Planning Handbook).
Our commitment to engage stakeholders
The Pacific Islands RPB commitment is included in three guiding principles of our charter:
Promote cultural traditions, values, and practices of the Pacific Islands as a means of managing natural resources and fostering opportunities for participation.
Support quality research and obtain the most complete scientific information and traditional ecological knowledge to assess and manage natural resources.
Promote education and outreach that fosters good stewardship and broad public participation.
The charter states that the “PI RPB members commit in good faith to a cooperative, open and transparent planning process leading to the development of a regional plan.” It also states that the PI RPB will ensure that “there is regular and appropriate public engagement during all phases of its work” and “that as the overall planning effort progresses, non-governmental organizations, academic and business entities, and private individuals will be consulted when necessary to ensure that planning is based on the best available information and sound science.” It is anticipated that non-governmental individuals will be engaged in projects and efforts that support the RPB, including committees and working groups.
Stakeholder engagement within the Pacific Islands RPB membership
Our members are in the community:
The Hawaii Office of Planning (OP) updated the Hawaii Ocean Resource Management Plan (ORMP; ORMP PDF) in 2013. During 2012, they held numerous public listening sessions across Hawaii to gather input on the ORMP. The Director of OP is the Governor of Hawaii’s designee on the Pacific Islands RPB and brings the State’s perspectives on Pacific Islands RPB initiatives to the conversation.
Workshops on CMSP:
The Western Pacific Fishery Management Council (WPFMC) hosted a Coastal and Marine Spatial Planning Workshop from July 31- August 4, 2011, to train community members, fishermen, agency representatives from the Pacific Islands region on how to create a marine spatial plan and how to be involved. The Council is now using elements of the process that was taught for the siting of a longline dock in Saipan, CNMI, and the development of a community-based fishery management plan in Merizo, Guam. The WPFMC also hosted two workshops, one each in CNMI and American Samoa to train local agency individuals on how to create a marine spatial plan.
Two Fishers Forums have been held to introduce the public to CMSP and answer questions – one in Honolulu on October 12, 2010, and another in American Samoa on March 12, 2013. Lastly, the WPFMC constantly and consistently engages stakeholders at their meetings, and created a Regional Marine Planning and Climate Change Committee to address marine planning from a fishery management council perspective. Due to the cross membership (at least 4 WPFMC members also are Pacific Islands RPB members), stakeholder perspectives on WPFMC issues are brought into conversations of the Pacific Islands RPB.
Workshops on Ocean Uses:
The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM), in partnership with the State of Hawaii, conducts the Hawaii Outer Continental Shelf Renewable Energy Program Task Force meetings. These meetings are a venue for federal, state and local government agency representatives, from policy makers to scientists, to discuss development of renewable energy on the Outer Continental Shelf offshore Hawaii. Task Force meetings are open to the public, and time is provided for public input and discussion following the formal Task Force meetings. The most recent Task Force meeting was December 5, 2012. BOEM also hosted a public workshop from August 13-14, 2013, to discuss the potential offshore renewable energy technologies that could be deployed on the West Coast and in Hawaii. The flyer and agenda are available on their website.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and BOEM co-hosted a science workshop in Honolulu from October 2-3, 2012, that assessed what types of habitat and human use data are available in Hawaii. RPB members attended this workshop, as well as several scientists and managers. The proceedings can be found here.
Attend a meeting:
Our RPB meetings are open for the public to attend. It is anticipated that non-governmental individuals will be engaged in projects that support the Pacific Islands RPB, including committees and working groups.
Like us on Facebook:
Our Facebook page is maintained with relevant updates and links to online resources. Continue to use our website for documents and information about the Pacific Islands RPB and its activities.
Communicate with the RPB:
Have a question or comment? Email the Executive Secretary of the Pacific Islands RPB or contact the co-leads.
Opportunities to participate will be posted on this web page. To stay informed about these opportunities and receive updates, please email the Executive Secretary to be added to the distribution list.
PI RPB Meeting
PI RPB and AS Ocean Planning Team Listening Session
Upcoming Planning Team Meetings
American Samoa Ocean Planning Team
May 26, 2016 Teleconference
Upcoming RPB Meetings in other Regions
Other Relevant Non-RPB Meetings/Conferences/Trainings
American Samoa Ocean Plan
President Obama tasked the federal agencies to coordinate ocean planning efforts through creation of regional planning bodies (RPBs) formed under the National Ocean Policy, and invited non-federal agencies and jurisdictions to participate. Governor Moliga answered the call by appointing two of his cabinet members to serve on the Pacific Islands RPB to represent the needs of the people of American Samoa.
Because of Governor Moliga’s support, American Samoa is now leading the way in the US Pacific Islands by developing the first jurisdictional ocean plan. The ocean plan, developed by American Samoa’s agencies and relevant federal agencies, with input from the Territory’s people, will:
- promote multiple use,
- streamline permitting,
- improve coastal and ocean health,
- improve cross-agency communication,
- improve governmental decision-making,
- encourage adaptation to sea level rise,
- improve stakeholder engagement in permitting process and other ocean activities, and
- provide a tool to aid visualizing uses, potential uses, and the environment.
American Samoa Ocean Planning Team
A multi-stakeholder PARTNERSHIP! The Port Administration and Department of Marine and Wildlife Resources of American Samoa have assembled a planning team (below) to develop the ocean plan (coastal and marine spatial plan) for the Territory. This plan will also serve as a chapter in the overarching Pacific Islands Coastal and Marine Spatial Plan.
The American Samoa Ocean Planning Team (ASOPT) was established in January 2016. Within three months, the ASOPT drafted a process to develop the ocean plan and received input from the community about their vision for American Samoa’s oceans and coasts. The ASOPT incorporated that input and drafted a Vision Statement for the plan.
Vision for the American Samoa Ocean Plan
The people of American Samoa, with their healthy ocean, coasts and communities, enjoy a thriving and secure environment, economy, and Fa’a Samoa.
On March 30, 2016, the PIRPB and ASOPT hosted a listening session with community members and stakeholders. Over 30 people attended and answered individually and in a group four questions. The summary is below.
Question 1: Why are the ocean waters around American Samoa important to you? Why do you care about them?
Question 2: What do you believe are the most important issues currently facing the ocean waters around American Samoa?
Question 3: In 10-15 years, what would we see happening in American Samoa as a result of the coastal and ocean waters being effectively managed and multiple ocean uses balanced?
Question 4: Does the proposed vision statement adequately capture the key concepts that you have shared and discussed tonight for American Samoa’s ocean waters? What changes do you suggest?
Get involved! Email us with input, feedback, or questions:
ASoceanplan at PacificIslandsRPB.org
Coordinator at PacificIslandsRPB.org
ASOP Team 29Mar2016
March 29 meeting attendees: Tuulalo (CZM), Domingo (DMWR), Nate (WPFMC), Brian (USCG), Miranda (ecoLOGIC), Sandra (CZM), Brian (US FWS), Lauren (Udall), Nerelle (Planning).
April 1 meeting attendees: Carlos (fisherman), Mike (NMFS), Lauren (Udall), Joan (DOD), Christinna (WPFMC), Krista (WPFMC), Domingo (DMWR), Chris (Port), Miranda (ecoLOGIC), Nate (WPFMC), Mia (AS EPA), Brian (USCG), Fatima (NMFS)
The ASOPT consists of members representing:
- American Samoa Port Administration
- American Samoa Dept. of Marine and Wildlife Resources (DMWR)
- American Samoa Environmental Protection Agency (AS EPA)
- American Samoa Dept. of Commerce Coastal Management Program (CMP)
- American Samoa Dept. of Commerce Planning Department (Planning)
- Office of Samoan Affairs (invited)
- Western Pacific Fishery Management Council (WPFMC)
- NOAA National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS)
- NOAA Sanctuaries
- US Fish and Wildlife Service (US FWS)
- National Park Service
- US Coast Guard (USCG)
- US Department of Defense (DOD)