CMS and NOAA Sign LOC for Conservation of Migratory Marine Species

12 February 2013: The US' National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (Department of Commerce/NOAA) and the Secretariat of the Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (CMS) have signed a renewed Letter of Cooperation (LOC) in the conservation and management of migratory marine species and their habitats.

Jane Lubchenco, Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere and NOAA Administrator, and Bert Lenten, CMS Deputy Executive Secretary and Officer in Charge, signed the Letter on 12 February 2013. According to the LOC, NOAA and CMS will cooperate on different activities, including identifying opportunities to develop and implement collaborative programs, enhancing communication and increasing public knowledge, exchanging scientific information and sharing advice and support, and engaging in research, training and capacity building pertaining to the conservation of migratory marine species.

Parties will also continue to exchange information on sharks; work to develop mitigation strategies to reduce cetacean bycatch; train volunteers to respond to marine mammal stranding and entanglement events; and collaborate on planning and preparing for the Third International Conference on Marine Mammal Protected Areas, which is scheduled to take place in Australia in 2014. Lubchenco highlighted that under the last LOC, NOAA's engagement with CMS activities had increased and now the US is Signatory to three CMS MOUs related to marine turtles, sharks, and cetaceans. Lenten noted that NOAA has played an instrumental role in advancing conservation goals for migratory species such as sharks. [CMS Press Release] [IISD RS Coverage of First Meeting of Signatories to the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on the Conservation of Migratory Sharks]