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California Workshop

small sea changes: BIG California Impacts

Tuesday, May 25, 2010
The Seaside Forum – Scripps Institution of Oceanography
La Jolla, California

On behalf of all the sponsors, thank you for attending the Small Sea Changes: Big Business Impacts workshop on May 25, in La Jolla, CA. Participants demonstrated a great appetite for establishing relationships and partnerships to help develop a comprehensive understanding of the ocean and how it delivers economic and environmental benefits to industries, government, and citizens of California. 

If you haven’t already done so, we hope that you will take the time to pursue some of the leads and contacts made at the workshop. Also please feel welcome to contact the Interagency Working Group on Ocean Observations (IWGOO) Support Office with any feedback on the May 25 workshop or to offer suggestions about future events.   


Sea Changes Panel 

California Impacts Panel 

Delivering Benefits Panel  

California Benefits Panel 

Realizing Benefits Panel 


Monitoring and forecasting the ocean delivers important safety, economic and environmental benefits to California’s industries, government and citizens.

Ensuring safety in California’s densely populated coastal region requires an understanding of coastal hazards such as flooding, erosion and harmful algal blooms. Managing the sustainable use of marine resources and the quality of the marine environment demands a thorough understanding of how the ocean works. Even far inland, the ocean drives weather and climate affecting businesses and citizens throughout the State. Observing the ocean delivers benefits through improved prediction of coastal hazards, better protection of the environment of coastal waters, and more reliable forecasting of weather and projection of changes in future climate.

Better prediction of coastal hazards and the coastal environment benefits industries such as ports, shipping and tourism as well as helping to protect vulnerable coastal assets and infrastructure. Greater understanding of coastal waters enables more sustainable use of living and non-living resources and supports integrated planning of the many uses of the coastal zone.

By better understanding the connection between the ocean and weather we can improve predictions of when and where severe weather will strike. Reducing the uncertainties in weather and climate impacts significantly improves strategies for management of infrastructure and resources and the reduction of business risks. All industries and physical assets are vulnerable to extreme weather and long-term changes in climate. In California, agriculture, power generation and water supply are especially sensitive to extreme weather conditions and the need to plan for future changes in climate.

Sustained ocean observations provide benefits to economic activity throughout California. They help to ensure the welfare, safety and security of Californians; protecting the environment in which they live, work and play. A sustained Integrated Ocean Observing System (IOOS) that connects ocean information at global, national, state and local scales is an essential part of delivering these benefits.

The workshop will provide delegates with:

  • An introduction to coastal hazards and the coastal environment;
  • An appreciation of how the ocean drives weather and climate;
  • A review of how ocean observations benefit industries, government and citizens;
  • An understanding of how ocean observations are used to deliver benefits;
  • An opportunity to network across a range of disciplines and sectors.

This workshop is sponsored and organized by the following organizations: