The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration expects to release a request for proposals in October for data collection and governance technologies supporting climate change-minded fisheries management.
NOAA’s procurement is a small business set-aside for the Fisheries Domain within its nearly $8 billion, indefinite delivery, indefinite quantity Professional, Scientific and Technical Services 2.0 (ProTech 2.0) program.
ProTech 2.0 task orders will cover four domains — Satellite, Fisheries, Oceans and Weather — and dovetail off of its ProTech predecessor’s, which as of April numbered 230 awards worth $1.12 billion, almost half, of the contract’s $3 billion ceiling. NOAA wants Fisheries 2.0 Domain task orders to go to companies that will bolster the national environmental intelligence capability.
“In ten years our fishery management plans will implement a more flexible approach that focuses on ecosystem function and sustaining economically viable coastal communities, recognizing that species contributions will change with climate change,” reads a NOAA industry day presentation from April.
With a five-year base period and one, five-year option, ProTech 2.0 runs twice as long as ProTech to provide more stability and encourage long-term solutions, according to the presentation.
ProTech 2.0 will continue to allow the practice of teaming on the fly, where prime awardees pursue any task order within their domain and add subcontractors as needed.
Bidders must be able to provide professional, scientific and technical experts across ProTech 2.0’s six task areas:
- studies, data analysis and reports;
- applied research, engineering, consulting and operations;
- filed sampling, data collection and surveys;
- training and program and project management;
- fisheries management and consultation activities; and
- economic and social science.
While not all task areas need to be addressed, it will “decrease confidence” if an offeror fails to demonstrate experience for each requirement within a contract element, according to NOAA’s response to draft request for proposals (RFP) feedback.
Offerors’ relevant experience should fall within the last five years and be greater than or similar to current ProTech Fisheries task orders, which run from $100,000 to $10 million.
Bids will be evaluated in two phases with offerors first providing an administrative volume with an executive summary; a five-page written submission outlining employee recruitment, practices and mission commitment; and a technical corporate capabilities self-assessment matrix. Top contenders will then be selected to submit full, written proposals and give oral presentations.
NOAA closed the Satellite 2.0 Domain RFP in January with an award expected in the first quarter of fiscal 2023. Drafts of the Oceans 2.0 Domain RFP and Weather 2.0 Domain RFP haven’t been released, but their awards are expected in the second quarter of fiscal 2024 and first quarter of fiscal 2025 respectively.
The Fisheries 2.0 Domain procurement will consist of at least 10 and no more than 25 awards with on- and off-ramping throughout its lifespan.
“The expected time of award for ProTech 2.0 Fisheries is September 2023,” reads NOAA’s response to feedback. “While we do not anticipate an overlap, should the need to [extend] current contracts arise, the ordering period for 2.0 contracts will begin at the end of the current period of performance.”