NOAA ESI Data Supports Port Development and Activities

The NOAA Environmental Sensitivity Index (ESI) program provides critical data to support port development through risk assessment and sensitive resource mapping for all coastal areas. ESI maps and datasets are a product of NOAA’s Office of Response and Restoration and can be a critical resource for ports to better understand their natural and human-influenced environment. ESIs are a one-stop-shop that allow planners and responders to understand sensitive environments and support permitting, port development, risk assessment, help prepare for a potential spill, or evaluate the consequences after an incident. ESI products display the sensitivity of shorelines to oil or chemical spills, as well as compiled information on biological resources, like plants and animal species, and relevant human-use resources such as parks and marinas. They are the leading industry standard for spill response and can support compliance activities associated with shipping and planning. The data is particularly relevant as sea level rise threatens coastal infrastructure around the country and communities seek to enhance the resiliency of their shorelines.