OceanObs19 Side Meeting Enhancing biological observing capacity of ocean programs and platforms – September 18, 2019 (Honolulu, HI)
During the OceanObs19 Meeting, OCB planned and hosted a side meeting to bring together members of the oceanographic community to identify biological and ecological observing technology that could be deployed on current sustained observational programs. In order for the measurements to be accommodated in programs such as GO-SHIP they should be at the appropriate readiness level for large-scale deployment. Participants also touched upon opportunities for short-term, cost-effective deployments via other existing shipboard and autonomous programs and platforms (Argo, OOI, OceanSITES, LTER, GEOTRACES, etc.). The oceanographic community has made great strides over the past couple of decades in developing physical and biogeochemical observing capacity and this can serve as a foundation for biological and ecological measurements. A more holistic understanding of marine ecosystem function and change will require more large-scale and sustained ocean biological and ecological observations. The time for such an integrated approach is now. In particular, rapid advances in imaging, acoustics, and genomic sensing as applied to biological and ecological system functioning have made it feasible to incorporate these measurements into current sustained observing efforts with minimal impact on the established operations.
This side meeting convened 35-40 participants across disciplines, agencies, and observing networks and programs. Meeting presenters highlighted the current GO-SHIP operations and criteria for incorporation of new measurements. Participants discussed the scientific justification and urgency of a more globally expansive marine ecological observing network to document changes in biodiversity, biogeography, food webs, etc.. An overview of biological and ecological observing technology status was presented. Presenters emphasized the importance of incorporating existing technologies to measure biology now, and new technologies as they mature. Program representatives shared status updates and near-term plans for GO-SHIP and Biogeochemical-Argo (BGC-Argo). Participants engaged in Q&A and discussed strategies and logistical feasibility of integrating biological observations into these and other programs. Recent proposals to federal funding agencies offer the potential for a greatly expanded array of BGC-Argo floats. As a starting point for GO-SHIP, an ad hoc committee of scientists will develop recommendations for incorporation of biological and ecological measurements into the next phase of US GO-SHIP. These recommendations will build upon the Integration of Plankton-Observing Sensor Systems to Existing Global Sampling Programs (P-OBS) SCOR WG-154 report that will be available for community comment in October.
Please contact Heather Benway in the OCB Project Office (firstname.lastname@example.org) for more information.