NOAA Collection and Dissemination of Marine Informationby Dennis G. Carroll, NOAA, Rockville, United States,
Abstract: The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) interest in marinas stems from our mandate to foster boating safety through the issuance of marine navigation products and our desire to provide useful information for the recreational boater. Marina information is provided to the public on small-craft charts which provide coverage of harbors, bays, and the Intracoastal Waterway, and in the 'United States Coast Pilot,' a series of nine books which provide descriptive information about charted coastal areas. In the near future, we plan to release digital files of significantly expanded marina information to the public. Early in the 20th century, the Coast Pilot began carrying information on small-boat service areas which took on the title of marinas. This information was obtained by government personnel who visited these areas while gathering chart and Coast Pilot information. Later, some marina operators began voluntarily supplying information to NOAA. In the early 1960's, NOAA began a series of small-craft charts which contain listings of basic services provided by marinas and other facility operations. Because of this, it became necessary to collect this information in a formal manner. Later, as part of NOAA's Cooperative Charting Program, the U.S. Power Squadrons and the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary began volunteer reporting of information on marinas for small-craft charts and Coast Pilots. The digital files, soon to be released, are updated by periodic request mailingstp known marinas, by NOAA field personnel, therough the Cooperative Charting Program, and from information voluntarily sent in by marina operators.
Subject Headings: Ports and harbors | Federal government | Information management | Data collection | Small craft | Information systems | Coastal environment | Water-based recreation | North America | United States
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