Feds Commit $82 Million to Protect North Atlantic Right Whale

Six months after an unprecedented number of humpback whale deaths occurred along the New Jersey coast, the federal government announced billions in funding for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration that includes an $82 million commitment to the conservation and protection of the critically endangered North Atlantic right whale.

The funds are part of the total $3.3 billion earmarked for NOAA under the Inflation Reduction Act to address climate change.

“We will provide direct support for the application of newer technologies, such as passive acoustic monitoring. We will invest in the development and, ultimately, implementation of new technologies to enable vessels to detect and avoid right whales and other large whales,” according to NOAA’s webpage on how it will prioritize the federal dollars. “This will reduce one of the primary threats to this species. We will continue developing and evaluating new technologies, such as satellite observations, to transform North Atlantic right whale monitoring and to improve understanding of the whales’ distribution and habitat use.”

NOAA also said the monies will “leverage other funding received and support the development of innovative fishing gear and support dynamic management. We will also partner and coordinate within NOAA and with our federal, state, industry, and other partners.”

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