With its stable, long-term funding, the Board’s most enduring legacy may be its steady encouragement of multidisciplinary, ecosystem-wide research.
NPRB and the National Science Foundation launched a joint five-year (2007-2012), $50 million project to further develop this understanding in the Bering Sea.
A second ecosystem-research program focusing on the Gulf of Alaska was launched in spring 2009.
Scientists join forces in a coordinated approach to understanding how a marine ecosystem works — from the benthos to the atmosphere, and everything in between. They also study the socio-economic impacts of a changing marine ecosystem on humans and communities.
The goal of an IERP is to gain understanding of an integrated ecosystem so that fisheries managers can better forecast and respond to changing environmental conditions. Accurate ecological forecasts will help support critical decisions and planning for the management of coastal and ocean ecosystems and fish and wildlife populations.