During the week of November 13, 2012 approximately 200 representatives of the US Integrated Ocean Observing System (IOOS) community convened in Herndon, VA to develop a strategy for the next decade. Over four days, the workshop participants reviewed the progress of the last decade and identified opportunities for the coming ten years.
This publication – U.S. IOOS Summit Report – shows that now, more than ever, the United States requires a sustained and integrated ocean observing system, says regional, national, and global ocean experts with the launch of a new report on how a strengthened U.S. Integrated Ocean Observing System (IOOS®) can better protect life and property, sustain a growing economic vitality, safeguard ecosystems, and advance quality of life for all people. The report shows how improved ocean observing can become an increasingly valuable commodity worldwide with the increasing role of maritime commerce and new ocean-related investments, vulnerability to ocean-related natural disasters, the need to provide security for coastal populations, and the challenges of providing food and water for more people.
The report is a culmination of work leading up to the Summit and a synthesis of the outcomes from the meeting attended by 200 representatives. Prior to the event, teams assigned to various themes of the report began assimilating information on ocean observing system requirements, technology gaps, structural design, and integration challenges. Additionally, Summit organizers solicited technical white papers from hundreds of ocean observing experts, in all, authors submitted 105 documents for inclusion, which underwent peer review and are provided as a second volume to the report. What resulted is a comprehensive analysis of the current state IOOS’s ability to observe the oceans, coasts, and Great Lakes and a strategy for developing a stronger national ocean observing system over the next decade.
The U.S. IOOS Summit Report presents a set of major themes for IOOS planning and implementation over the next ten years:
- Improving governance to address high-level coordination and support needs
- Pursuing new funding mechanisms and potential public-private partnerships to complement traditional funding
- Developing a complete census of existing observing efforts
- Increasing the breadth and scope of ocean observations to address increased demand
- Developing a web-based central “market-place” for bringing users, requirements, data providers, new technologies, and available data and products together
- Improving branding, attribution, and user awareness of U.S. IOOS and its many contributors and participants
- Developing common design processes and common data/product standards
- Increasing the level of integration across the IOOS enterprise, moving from cooperative to more coordinated approaches
- Maintaining forward momentum and continuing to grow IOOS, while addressing needed improvements.
MEETING MATERIALS Back to Top
- IOOS Summit Program
- IOOS Summit Declaration
- Important IOOS Documents & Reports
- How Participants to the IOOS Summit were Selected
- IOOS Summit Organization
- Community White Papers
“The very few existing time-series stations paint a compelling picture of important oceanic changes in physics, chemistry, and biology. Yet these stations capture the time domain at only a single point. New strategies for observing the appropriate spatial correlation are required.”
– Ocean Sciences at the New Millennium, Ocean Sciences Decadal Committee 2001
Ocean observing has come a long way since the Ocean Sciences Decadal Committee met over a decade ago. And since then, our use of the ocean and coast and their vast resources has increased substantially – with increased shipping, fishing, offshore energy development and recreational boating. That increased use has also spearheaded advances in observing systems. Cutting-edge autonomous and remotely operated vehicles scour the surface and travel to depths collecting essential biogeochemical data for better managing our marine resources. Satellites enable the global mapping of practically every physical ocean variable imaginable. A nationally-integrated coastal network of high-frequency radars line the borders of the U.S. feeding critical navigation, response, and environmental information continuously. Federal, academic, and industry communities have joined in unique partnerships at regional, national, and global levels to address common challenges to monitoring our ocean. Given this tremendous collective effort, it is time to take stock and identify ways to strengthen the enterprise as we move forward into a new era.
GOALS AND OBJECTIVES Back to Top
- Seeking expert guidance on future implementation for sustained observations
- Re-establishing the priority observations needed to monitor the ocean
- Prioritizing key applications for future ocean observing development
- Exploring underused ocean observing products and services
- Celebrating and expanding on recent achievements of the IOOS community
- Determining how IOOS can better serve the scientific community
- Leveraging resources and materials with regional, national, and international partners
- Analyzing new and existing policy and management strategies and
- Ensuring that IOOS is meeting the critical needs of the wide variety of stakeholders who have come to depend on it
DELIVERABLES Back to Top
The proceedings of the community white papers, writing teams, and Summit outcomes were organized into a final report with the following chapters:
- Report Highlighting the Past Decade of Progress
- Updated User Requirements: Revisiting and Updating
- Gap Assessment of Existing Observing System Capabilities
- Identified Integration Challenges and Opportunities
- Vision for the Next 10 Years
U.S. IOOS SUMMIT PRESENTATIONS: Back to Top
Below are the presentations delivered during the U.S. IOOS Summit on November 13-16, 2012.