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Environmental Sensitivity Index (ESI) Program Holds Second Round of Briefings for Congressional Staff

OCTOBER 18, 2021 — OR&R staff followed up September’s trio of Congressional briefings on the Environmental Sensitivity Index (ESI) program with another set of three briefings between October 12 and 15. These all-interested briefings were an opportunity for Congressional staff to learn about ESI maps and data along with their current status in different regions of the country.

Workers cleaning up a beach.
Members from the Orange County shoreline cleanup and assessment team conduct cleanup operations in the vicinity of Corona Del Mar State Beach Park, California, Oct. 6, 2021. The crews worked alongside federal, state, and local partners, ensuring cleanup efforts were conducted efficiently and with minimal impact to the environment. Image credit: USCG.

The presentations were led by Scott Lundgren, Director of NOAA OR&R, and Nicolle Rutherford, ESI Program Manager. 

The briefings were divided by region, with sessions held for the Northeast, the Southeast and Atlantic states, and the continental Pacific Coast. There was strong attendance at each briefing from the staff of relevant members and committees. 

The briefings were a timely opportunity for OR&R to share the critical role of ESIs in disaster response, preparation, and natural resource damage assessment (NRDA), especially given the recent public focus on the oil spill off the coast of California. OR&R also discussed the importance of securing further resources so that the maps may be refreshed on a regular basis, keeping them up to date and accurate for future responses. 

Stay tuned for more updates on new ESI maps in the coming weeks. 

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Last updated Tuesday, November 8, 2022 1:42pm PST