Biden-Harris Administration invests nearly $755,000 to support tribal nations’ engagement in regional ocean partnerships as part of Investing in America agenda

Funding will support increased tribal participation in ocean and coastal resource management

Today, the Department of Commerce and NOAA announced $754,953 in funding from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (BIL) to support federally recognized Indian tribes’ participation with regional ocean partnerships as part of President Biden’s Investing in America agenda. These funds will support activities of three federally recognized Indian tribes on the East and West Coasts to manage ocean and coastal resources and data, and build resilience for future challenges. The projects will also further the Biden-Harris Administration’s priorities to tackle the climate crisis and support underserved communities.

“We remain committed to using these unprecedented resources to ensure that tribal community participation in regional ocean partnerships remains a steadfast priority,” said National Ocean Service Assistant Administrator Nicole LeBoeuf. “With the constant goal of being prepared for future challenges, today’s investment is another step forward in our mission to secure a prosperous and sustainable tomorrow.”

The Makah Indian Tribe, located on the tip of the Olympic Peninsula in Washington, is working to continue building their mapping capabilities while focusing on West Coast Ocean Alliance and tribal priorities, including data sovereignty and outreach and education. (Makah Tribe Photo)

The three awardees are:

  • The Makah Indian Tribe, which will receive $288,482 to build on ocean data and mapping support work that was made possible by a previous BIL award, while also focusing on priorities identified by the Makah Tribe and the West Coast Ocean Alliance, including tribal data sovereignty and student engagement.

  • The Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Mission Indians, which will receive $266,473 to strengthen the Tribe’s capacity and capability to build a collaborative partnership with the West Coast Ocean Alliance. The partnership will help advance the Alliance’s goals, which include focusing on the values of Indigenous rights, sustainable aquaculture and Tribal co-management of marine resources.

  • The Penobscot Indian Nation, which will receive $199,998 to enhance cooperation and collaboration among the Penobscot Nation, the Northeast Regional Ocean Council and other tribes. This work will ultimately increase tribal involvement in ocean and coastal related climate change issues in the Northeast.

Regional ocean partnerships are regional organizations voluntarily convened by governors that work in collaboration with tribal governments, federal agencies and local stakeholders, to address ocean and coastal issues of common concern. These projects will enable and enhance tribal participation with existing regional ocean partnerships, by supporting tribes’ capacity for partnership development.

Visit NOAA’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law website to learn about current and future funding opportunities. Project descriptions can be found on the NOAA Office for Coastal Management website.

Climate, weather, and water affect all life on our ocean planet. NOAA’s mission is to understand and predict our changing environment, from the deep sea to outer space, and to manage and conserve America’s coastal and marine resources. See how NOAA science, services, and stewardship benefit your community: Visit for our latest news and features, and join us on social media.
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