U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina M. Raimondo today in Woods Hole, Massachusetts, announced that the Department’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) is awarding a $470,000 grant to the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution to develop a waterfront oceanographic research infrastructure resiliency plan that will help keep the world-renowned research, exploration, and education institution operational in the event of future storms.
“President Biden is committed to helping communities impacted by natural disasters advance their plans to protect and grow their vital industry sectors,” said Secretary of Commerce Gina M. Raimondo. “This EDA investment will allow the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution to develop a plan to guard critical docking infrastructure that supports 1,000 jobs and that is relied upon by marine science and other businesses needing access to the ocean.”
“Woods Hole, Massachusetts is the epicenter of our nation’s coastal research ecosystem and the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute (WHOI) is a key anchor of that ecosystem,” said Senator Ed Markey. “The research conducted at WHOI is crucial in the fight against climate change, the fight for the future of the offshore wind industry, and the fight to understand the incredible ocean ecosystem right off of our shores. This Economic Development Administration investment in WHOI’s physical infrastructure will not only ensure that this vital research continues, but that it grows to meet the unique challenges we will face in the coming decades.”
“Sound science, engineering and education are crucial to ensure a healthy planet for future generations,” said Senator Elizabeth Warren. “This infrastructure investment from the Economic Development Administration (EDA) will protect Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) from future storms and make sure they can continue their critical work advancing our knowledge of the ocean.”
“The scientists at WHOI are fighting climate change every day, and this critical disaster relief funding will ensure that WHOI can protect the Iselin dock facility from the impacts of sea level rise and continue their work to protect our planet,” said Congressman Bill Keating (MA-09). “Woods Hole is uniquely situated as the center of maritime research on the East Coast, and I am grateful to the Department of Commerce and EDA for recognizing the importance of protecting our maritime infrastructure from the extreme weather events caused by climate change. I was glad to support WHOI’s grant application, and I remain committed to securing additional federal resiliency funds to support all of the important work taking place throughout Woods Hole.”
The Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution was impacted by a strong nor’easter in 2018. Among the infrastructure impacted was the Institution’s Iselin Dock. Iselin Dock generates at least $50 million in economic activity and allows businesses, researchers, local and state officials involved in public safety, and many others who play a key role in the region and state’s economy to access the ocean.
This project was made possible by the regional planning efforts led by Barnstable County acting through the Cape Cod Commission which EDA funds. Barnstable County acting through the Cape Cod Commission brings together the public and private sectors to create an economic development roadmap to strengthen the regional economy, support private capital investment and create jobs.
This project is funded by the Additional Supplemental Appropriations for Disaster Relief Act of 2019 (Pub. L. 116-20) (PDF), which provided EDA with $600 million in additional Economic Adjustment Assistance (EAA) Program (PDF) Program funds for disaster relief and recovery for areas affected by Hurricanes Florence, Michael, and Lane, Typhoons Yutu and Mangkhut, wildfires, volcanic eruptions, and other major natural disasters occurring in calendar year 2018, and tornadoes and floods occurring in calendar year 2019, under the Robert T. Stafford Act. Please visit EDA’s Disaster Supplemental webpage for more information.
About the U.S. Economic Development Administration (www.eda.gov)
The mission of the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) is to lead the federal economic development agenda by promoting competitiveness and preparing the nation’s regions for growth and success in the worldwide economy. An agency within the U.S. Department of Commerce, EDA invests in communities and supports regional collaboration in order to create jobs for U.S. workers, promote American innovation, and accelerate long-term sustainable economic growth.