Ocean Planning

Delaware Coastal Programs supports the long-term economic and ecological health of the Mid-Atlantic through regional ocean planning efforts.

Enter DNREC’s Ocean Month Poetry Contest

In celebration of National Oceans Month in June, DNREC has partnered with Delaware libraries in each county to conduct a haiku poetry contest. Prizes will be awarded for ocean-themed haiku poems in two categories: K-12 (ages 5 through 18) and adult (ages 19 and above). The deadline to enter is 4 p.m. on June 4. Winners will be announced on World Ocean Day (June 8). Find complete rules and information on how to enter.

Delaware Ocean and Bay Plan

DNREC’s Delaware Coastal Programs is developing an Ocean and Bay Plan to protect Delaware’s marine resources, ecological functions and ocean and bay uses. The Delaware Ocean and Bay Plan will provide a comprehensive, easy to use resource for decision makers and stakeholders. It will help them better understand and manage resources and uses occurring off Delaware’s coast and in the Delaware Bay. Developing the plan will include public input and review by stakeholders, residents and the public at large.

The Mid-Atlantic Regional Ocean Action Plan

The Mid-Atlantic Regional Ocean Action Plan was certified by the National Ocean Council on December 7, 2016. It outlines actions to improve collaboration among federal and state agencies, tribes, and the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council to ensure healthy, productive, and resilient marine ecosystems and sustainable ocean uses in the Mid-Atlantic. Coastal programs is working with regional partners of the Mid-Atlantic Regional Planning Body to implement those actions identified in the plan.

The Mid-Atlantic Regional Council on the Ocean


Delaware is part of the Mid-Atlantic Regional Council on the Ocean (MARCO), formed in 2009 by the governors of Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, Virginia, and New York to address shared regional priorities and provide a collective voice. The Mid-Atlantic Governors’ Agreement on Ocean Conservation, which created the Council, set out four regional priorities for shared action to improve ocean health and contribute to the high quality of life and economic vitality of the region: Climate Change Adaptation, Marine Habitats, Renewable Energy, and Water Quality.

The MARCO Mid-Atlantic Ocean Data Portal is an online toolkit and resource center that consolidates available data and enables users and the general public to visualize and analyze ocean resources and human use information.

The Mid-Atlantic Coastal Acidification Network (MACAN) is jointly coordinated by MARCO and the Mid-Atlantic Regional Association Coastal Ocean Observing System (MARACOOS).  It seeks to coordinate and guide regional observing, research, and modeling of ocean and coastal acidification.