Calls for Regional Ocean Collaboration
The Pew Oceans Commission and U.S. Commission on Ocean Policy reports call for regional collaboration to protect and restore America’s oceans.
Governors Form the Gulf of Mexico Alliance
The governors of Alabama, Florida, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Texas establish the Gulf of Mexico Alliance as a state-led network of partners to collaborate on priority issues affecting the environmental and economic health of the region. The Alliance receives early federal support through the Bush Administration’s “U.S. Ocean Action Plan” and engagement from the White House Council on Environmental Quality, EPA, NOAA, and U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service.
State and federal representatives establish an organizational structure for the rapidly-growing partnership including priority issue teams, committees, chairs, and coordinators.
Governors’ Action Plan I
As a starting point for increased regional collaboration, the Alliance releases its first Governors’ Action Plan for Healthy and Resilient Coasts. This plan comes on the heels of the record-shattering 2005 hurricane season, which impacts all five Gulf states and re-affirms the critical need for regional partnership.
Governors’ Action Plan II
Building on the tremendous accomplishments of the first plan, the Alliance releases Governors’ Action Plan II with more aggressive objectives to address pressing issues affecting the Gulf region. The states identify six regional priority areas to improve Gulf ecosystems and economies. Recognizing the benefits of additional expertise, the Alliance broadens its partnership to include academic and non-governmental organizations.
The Deepwater Horizon oil rig explodes in the Gulf of Mexico. Eleven workers lose their lives and over 130 million gallons of oil are released into the Gulf, creating one of the worst environmental disasters in U.S. history. Numerous civil and criminal settlements resulted from the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, including programs to address environmental and economic restoration as well as ecosystem research.
Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative
The Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative is formed to study the environmental and public health impacts of the oil spill. The Alliance begins administering this 10-year, $500 million research program.
GOMA Becomes a Non-Profit Organization
The Gulf of Mexico Alliance transforms from a loose network of partners to an official 501(c)3 non-profit organization and establishes a headquarters office on the central Gulf Coast in Mississippi.
Business Advisory Council
The Alliance starts a Business Advisory Council to build relationships with the diverse industries dependent on the resources and resilience of the Gulf of Mexico. Council members collaborate with government agencies, academia, and non-governmental organizations on priority issues and work to foster a shared stewardship of the Gulf.
Deepwater Horizon Project Tracker
Filling a need for comprehensive information on restoration, recovery, and research funded by settlements from the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, the Alliance partners with The Trust for Public Lands and Ducks Unlimited to create the Deepwater Horizon Project Tracker. It includes location, type, cost, funding, and scope information for over 99% of the work funded by DWH settlements.
The Alliance launches the Gulf Star Program, a public-private partnership that provides funding for projects supporting healthy beaches, clean waters, productive ecosystems, and thriving coastal communities in the Gulf of Mexico region.
Governors’ Action Plan III
Continuing 10 years of successful collaboration between the Gulf states and regional partners, the Alliance releases Governors’ Action Plan III for Healthy and Resilient Coasts.The plan reinforces the Alliance’s commitment to effective regional collaboration and coordination, addressing issues common to all five Gulf states in a voluntary way. GOMA began offering the popular Tools Cafe at our annual All Hands meeting in 2016.
Embrace the Gulf Campaign
The Alliance launches the “Embrace the Gulf” initiative, a year-long education and awareness effort highlighting the vitality, sustainability, and productivity of the Gulf of Mexico. Building on this success, the initiative continues into 2021 with a call to action campaign focused on ways to volunteer, help wildlife, get outside, and more.
Governors’ Action Plan IV
For nearly 20 years, the Gulf of Mexico Alliance has built a reputation of fostering collaborative relationships that lead to positive change. The Alliance remains steadfast in its commitment to building partnerships for a healthier Gulf as reflected in the current Governors’ Action Plan.