What are the responsibilities of the White House panel on oceans and coastlines?



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    On June 12, 2009, President Barack Obama created the Interagency Ocean Policy Task Force. Its responsibilities are to develop a recommendation for a national-level policy that protects, maintains, and restores the oceans, U.S. coastlines and the Great Lakes. One of the goals of the Task Force is to increase cooperation and coordination among federal agencies. In September the Task Force issued an interim report on its initial discussions, in which it suggested creating a National Ocean Council to handle ocean policy matters, an advisory committee to deal with state, local and Indian tribal authorities and other bureaucratic streamlining. The Task Force recommended the US adopt a policy of ecosystem-based management for coastal and Great Lakes resources, and also deal with climate change and acidification as imminent threats to the health of US ocean resources. The work of the Task Force in these areas is continuing.

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