NEW ORLEANS — The Port of New Orleans was awarded $947,280 in recently announced Port Security Grant funding from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to support the expansion and enhancement of emergency services for Port NOLA’s maritime and industrial operations.
With this funding award, Port NOLA will invest in physical and technological upgrades to the Port’s Emergency Operations Center (EOC) which serves as home base during hurricanes and other significant incidents. Additionally, funds will be used to purchase drones and to enhance the Harbor Police Department’s surveillance network.
Last year the Port received $514,964 in Port Security Grant funding from FEMA to upgrade technology at the HPD’s Maritime Security Operations Center (MSOC), for a total of $1,462,244 in the past two years.
The MSOC provides surveillance and communications equipment necessary for operational coordination and critical information-sharing with the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) and other public safety agencies. The upgraded system will be secure for the current threat landscape and adaptable to meet evolving security needs. New MSOC and EOC technologies also align with the cybersecurity priorities set by the USCG Sector New Orleans Captain of the Port.
“The Port Security Grant Program further strengthens our ability to proactively protect critical infrastructure and supports the Port’s ongoing homeland security efforts, as well as our investigative and law enforcement services,” said Brandy D. Christian, Port NOLA President and CEO and CEO for the New Orleans Public Belt Railroad (NOPB).
FEMA’s Port Security Grant Program provides $100 million to agencies to help protect critical port infrastructure from terrorism, enhance maritime domain awareness, improve port-wide maritime security risk management, and maintain or re-establish maritime security mitigation protocols that support port recovery and resiliency capabilities.