Navy, HCSEG Sign MOU

Captain Doug LaCoste of the US Navy and HCSEG Executive Director Mendy Harlow.
Captain Doug LaCoste of the US Navy and HCSEG Executive Director Mendy Harlow.

The Hood Canal Salmon Enhancement Group (HCSEG) and the Naval Undersea Warfare Center Division, Keyport, have signed an agreement to share scientific data and technology while protecting natural resources and national security.

The agreement was signed by HCSEG Executive Director Mendy Harlow and Captain Doug LaCoste, the commanding officer at NUWC Division, Keyport. The stated purpose of the agreement is to facilitate cooperation to provide critical scientific data, and a better understanding of the undersea environment in Hood Canal.

The nine-year agreement spells out various ways in which HCSEG and the Navy can work together. This includes the sharing of non-classified scientific data; supporting the development and use of innovative technology; facilitating the exploration of the Hood Canal watershed; increasing cooperation with private parties and within the government as it relates to protecting Hood Canal; and preparing proposals and other cooperative projects.

“This agreement paves the way for increased collaboration between HCSEG and the Navy in caring for Hood Canal’s natural resources and ecosystem,” said GCSEG Executive Director Mendy Harlow. “By sharing information, technology, and resources, we can jointly strengthen our commitment to learning about and caring for Hood Canal.”

The new MOU notes that the Navy has conducted tests on its undersea ranges in Hood Canal since the early 1900s.

“As a steward of the environment and the leading expert in Puget Sound undersea technology, NUWC Division, Keyport is committed to expanding its knowledge of the ocean and inland waterway environments while advancing technology, which has both military and regulatory/commercial applicability,” the agreement states.

The agreement also notes that the National Environmental Policy Act of 1970 discusses technology and environmental sustainability while encouraging the federal government to use financial and technical assistance to “promote the general welfare, create and maintain conditions under which man and nature can exist in productive harmony, and fulfill the social, economic, and other requirements of present and future generations.”

The new agreement expands on that theme, noting, “Environmental technologies and basic scientific research in the oceans and inland waterways are considered the bridge to a sustainable future that will facilitate the achievement of our Nation’s long-term environmental, energy, economic and national security goals.”

As a result of the new agreement, HCSEG will benefit from U.S. Navy oceanographic expertise, technology and data. The NUWC Division, Keyport, meanwhile, will benefit from additional oceanographic data, engineering evaluation, and developed device applications to better prepare for future test and evaluation needs.

In addition, the agreement states that the U.S. Navy will benefit from HCSEG and other third party sponsor funded utilization of personnel, facility, and range craft resources that will supplement the infrastructure maintenance requirements necessary for primary U.S. Navy mission support.

Leadership from the Naval Undersea Warfare Center Division, Keyport, and HCSEG.
Leadership from the Naval Undersea Warfare Center Division, Keyport, and HCSEG.

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