Capitol Hill Ocean Week 2023 Will Explore the Ocean-Climate Connection

Silver Spring, Md. – October 11, 2022 – Capitol Hill Ocean Week (CHOW), the nation’s premier ocean policy conference hosted by the National Marine Sanctuary Foundation, will focus on the connection between the ocean and climate change. CHOW 2023: Ocean x Climate will take place June 7th and 8th, 2023, both virtually and in Washington, DC at the Ronald Reagan Building.  

 A complex, interconnected network of biology, chemistry, and physical forces work together to sustain life on Earth. Change to one system effects all. Impacts ripple locally, regionally, nationally, and globally. Our social and economic systems are part of the Earth system and now the main drivers of change. 

Understanding global climate change and mitigating and adapting to its impacts is inextricably linked to our one ocean and its biodiversity. How we manage our global ocean to ensure it thrives for future generations is central to combatting climate change, protecting the health of coastal communities, and sustaining our economies.  

Kris Sarri, president and CEO of the National Marine Sanctuary Foundation, said “The ocean is critical to maintaining life on earth. A thriving ocean in the future requires we address climate change head-on. It means putting the ocean and coastal communities front and center in all national climate strategies. CHOW 2023 will dive into how this nexus will shape the future for our ocean, the role of national marine sanctuaries and protected areas in strengthening resilience, and communicating the need for more ocean-climate actions.” 

A nationally representative survey conducted by NORC at the University of Chicago for the National Marine Sanctuary Foundation revealed insights into Americans’ opinions on ocean conservation and climate change. The poll shows that Americans of all backgrounds overwhelmingly want the government and business to do more to protect the ocean and over half recognize that climate change is biggest threat to the diversity of life in our ocean.  

National marine sanctuaries and other marine protected areas (MPAs) are effective tools to protect the ocean, improve our understanding of how the climate impacts resources, and strengthen resilience.  According to the survey, two-thirds of Americans favor providing increased funding for community-led efforts to create more marine protected areas, including national marine sanctuaries.   

Convened by the National Marine Sanctuary Foundation every June, CHOW brings together scientists, policymakers, scholars, businesses, and conservation leaders to address pressing conservation, science, and management issues facing our oceans and Great Lakes. The conference is held in conjunction with the Foundation’s Ocean Awards Gala, which recognizes champions of marine and Great Lakes stewardship with Leadership, Lifetime Achievement, Conservation Innovation, and Sanctuary Wavemaker Awards. In 2023, the Ocean Awards Gala will be held on the evening of Thursday, June 8th. 

Sponsorship information is available for Capitol Hill Ocean Week 2023 here. 



The National Marine Sanctuary Foundation, established in 2000, is the official non-profit partner of the National Marine Sanctuary System. The Foundation directly supports America’s national marine sanctuaries through our mission to protect species, conserve ecosystems and preserve cultural and maritime heritage. We accomplish our mission through community stewardship and engagement programs, on-the-water conservation projects, public education and outreach programs, and scientific research and exploration. The Foundation fosters innovative projects that are solution-oriented, scalable and transferable, and develop strategic partnerships that promote the conservation and recovery of species and their habitats. Learn more at 


Contact: Chip Weiskotten 

Director of Strategic Communications