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Florida Office of Ocean Economy coming to FAU

Entrance to the Davie campus of Florida Atlantic University. [Photo by Sunshower Shots]

Florida will establish the Office of Ocean Economy at Florida Atlantic University after Gov. Ron DeSantis signed H.B. 1285 last month.

The law incorporates elements from legislation introduced by Reps. Chip LaMarca (R-Lighthouse Point) and Kelly Skidmore (D-Boca Raton) to establish the Office of Ocean Economy.

The office will try to advance research and development, technological innovation, emerging industries, and strategic business recruitment while accessing public and private funding. It will also focus on workforce training and education. 

The Office of Ocean Economy will cultivate partnerships and coordinate efforts with state and private universities, as well as institutions within the Florida College System, to promote collaborative research. The office also will work with industries to address economic hurdles through innovation, facilitating the commercialization or enhanced accessibility of academic research and other resources in the ocean economy.

“We are establishing the infrastructure needed to ensure a stable, robust economy for generations to follow,” Skidmore said. 

The United Nations has designated 2021 through 2030 as the U.N. Decade of Ocean Sciences for Sustainable Development, and “Florida answered the call,” Skidmore said. “I am elated that we have taken this first step toward making Florida the premier, internationally recognized destination for research and innovation relating to what is known globally as the blue economy.”

LaMarca said: “Water, in all its forms, is the backbone of Florida’s economy. This bill is a great step towards realizing the economic and business opportunities from the transformational research being done across Florida’s research institutions, which foster long-term economic growth and development for our state.” 


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