The Washington Coastal Marine Advisory Council (WCMAC) recently held its quarterly meeting and Surfrider Washington is happy to report that the Council has officially adopted the goals and objectives that will drive the upcoming Marine Spatial Planning Process (MSP)!

http://www.msp.wa.gov/wp-content/uploads/2014/01/MSP_scoping_summary.pdf

This milestone could not have been completed without the support of our members and partners in Washington. As you likely know, we have been working on a long time to provide comments and feedback to the development of the MSP guiding documents. We have  been involved in multiple stakeholder workshops, in particular two full-day seminars presented by Washington Seagrant, and we also had over 30 participants at our NW Chapter Summit in Westport in September.

PNW Conference Group Pic

All of this preparation led to a great response in the public comment, and Surfrider members and partners had more comments than anyone else in the State!

One of the biggest provisions added to the MSP Goals and Objectives was specific language that added “protect and preserve existing sustainable uses” to the planning document. These words had been highly debated in previous WCMAC meetings, but in the end our comments led to a specific change in the MSP process that will hopefully directly lead to environmental conservation and recreational access protections on the ground.

In addition, Washington Pacific Coast Coordinator, Casey Dennehy, was instrumental in his role on the WCMAC and also as Chair of the Grays Harbor MRC. Through his leadership, we were able to connect with many stakeholders through the region and ask for these important changes to the goals and objectives.

For more information about the WCMAC:

http://www.ecy.wa.gov/programs/sea/ocean/advisorycouncil.html

For more information about Marine Spatial Planning:

http://www.msp.wa.gov