West Coast Ocean Alliance
BOEM is an active member of the West Coast Ocean Alliance (WCOA), which serves as the Regional Ocean Partnership for the West Coast. The WCOA builds upon previous regional ocean coordination activities carried out through the West Coast Regional Planning Body (2014-2018), West Coast Governors Alliance on Ocean Health (2007-2015), and West Coast Ocean Partnership (2015-2018). The WCOA engages state, tribal, and federal government partners in a collaborative, non-regulatory forum to pursue consensus-driven activities carried out by members in support of the group’s Regional Vision . The WCOA’s four goals to achieve its regional vision are:
- Compatible and Sustainable Ocean Uses
- Effective and Transparent Decision-Making
- Comprehensive Ocean and Coastal Data
- Increased Understanding of and Respect for Tribal Rights, Traditional Knowledge, Resources and Practices
BOEM serves on the WCOA Executive Committee, sub-regional working groups focused on specific coastal areas of the West Coast, and annual meeting planning committee.
In 2019, the Tribal Caucus of the WCOA developed Guidance and Responsibilities for Effective Tribal Consultation, Communication, and Engagement: A Guide for Agencies Working with West Coast Tribes on Ocean & Coastal Issues. BOEM uses the Guidance document to inform its work with West Coast Tribes.
West Coast Ocean Data Network and Portal
BOEM is an active member of the West Coast Ocean Data Network and contributor to the West Coast Ocean Data Portal (WCODP). The West Coast Ocean Data Portal is a project to increase discovery and connectivity of ocean and coastal data and people to better inform regional resource management, policy development, and ocean planning. The Portal informs priority West Coast Ocean issues, including renewable energy development.
Since 2014, BOEM has been part of several WCOPD technical teams whose efforts include developing a story map on marine renewable energy as an example of changing ocean uses on the West Coast and synthesizing spatial data on benthic infauna, littoral cells, kelp surveys and extents, and fishing closure areas. These data sets have been integrated into the WCODP to inform ocean planning, policy development, and resource management on the West Coast.
Beginning in 2020, the Oregon Department of Land Conservation and Development, in partnership with BOEM, developed the Oregon Offshore Wind Mapping Tool (OROWindMap) within the WCODP to provide public access to the best available data throughout the offshore wind energy planning process.