The Ocean Carbon and Biogeochemistry (OCB) program was established in 2006 as one of the major activities of the U.S. Carbon Cycle Science Program, an interagency body that coordinates and facilitates activities relevant to carbon cycle science, climate, and global change issues. OCB’s overarching goal is to explore the ocean’s role in the global carbon cycle and the response of marine ecosystems to environmental changes of the past (paleo), present, and future (prediction).
Current Research Priorities
- Climate- and human-driven changes in ocean chemistry (e.g., acidification, deoxygenation, nutrient loading, etc.) and associated impacts on marine ecosystems
- Ocean carbon uptake and storage, including processes from the air-sea interface to the deep ocean
- Marine organism-mediated carbon cycling and export via the biological pump
- Benthic-pelagic coupling and sedimentary feedbacks on marine biogeochemistry and food webs
- Carbon cycling and associated biogeochemical fluxes and exchanges along the aquatic continuum
- Marine organism response to environmental change, including molecular, physiological, ecological, and evolutionary processes
OCB is a network of scientists who work across disciplines, such as ocean chemistry, biology and physics, to understand the ocean's role in the global carbon cycle and the response of marine ecosystems and biogeochemical cycles to environmental change. OCB is a bottom-up organization that responds to the continually evolving research priorities and needs of its network.
What do we do?
- OCB brings together scientific disciplines and cultivates partnerships with complementary US and international programs to address high-priority research questions about marine ecosystems and biogeochemistry. OCB plays multiple important support roles for its network:
- Organizes and co-sponsors workshops, short courses, working groups and synthesis activities on emerging research issues
- Serves as a central information hub (websites, email list, newsletter, social media) to broadcast scientific news, opportunities, and research highlights
- Engages with relevant national and international science planning initiatives
- Develops education and outreach activities and products with the goal of promoting ocean carbon science to broader audiences
- Trains the next generation of ocean scientists and engages early career scientists in OCB activities (travel support, networking, mentoring)
What is our impact?
OCB cultivates a continually growing scientific network that fosters interdisciplinary collaborations, informs new projects and funding opportunities, and advances our mechanistic understanding of marine ecosystem-carbon cycle dynamics and their responses to environmental change. OCB activities provide an effective interdisciplinary model and forum for scientific inquiry and discussion.
View the OCB Timeline created by SustainaMetrix and OCB Project Office staff in 2014. This visualization features scientific and programmatic antecedents leading up to the development of the OCB Program in 2006, as well as key activities, partnerships, and outcomes of the OCB Program since its inception. Update coming in late 2023!
Articles About the OCB Program
Benway, H. M., Doney, S. C. (2014). Scientific outcomes and future challenges of the Ocean Carbon and Biogeochemistry Program. Oceanography 27(1):106-107 .
Benway, H. M., Doney, S. C. (2013). Addressing biogeochemical knowledge gaps. International Innovation (North America, June 2013), 12-14.
Doney, S. C. and H. M. Benway (2007). Ocean Carbon and Biogeochemistry: An eye toward integrated research. Limnology and Oceanography Bulletin 16(3): 69.