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Global observational needs and resources for marine biodiversity

July 23, 2019

The diversity of life in the sea is critical to the health of ocean ecosystems that support living resources and therefore essential to the economic, nutritional, recreational, and health needs of billions of people. Yet there is evidence that the biodiversity of many marine habitats is being altered in response to a changing climate and human activity. Understanding this change, and forecasting where changes are likely to occur, requires monitoring of organism diversity, distribution, abundance, and health. It requires a minimum of measurements including productivity and ecosystem function, species composition, allelic diversity, and genetic expression. These observations need to be complemented with metrics of environmental change and socio-economic drivers. However, existing global ocean observing infrastructure and programs often do not explicitly consider observations of marine biodiversity and associated processes. Much effort has focused on physical, chemical and some biogeochemical measurements. Broad partnerships, shared approaches, and best practices are now being organized to implement an integrated observing system that serves information to resource managers and decision-makers, scientists and educators, from local to global scales. This integrated observing system of ocean life is now possible due to recent developments among satellite, airborne, and in situ sensors in conjunction with increases in information system capability and capacity, along with an improved understanding of marine processes represented in new physical, biogeochemical, and biological models.

Citation Information

Publication Year 2019
Title Global observational needs and resources for marine biodiversity
DOI 10.3389/fmars.2019.00367
Authors Gabrielle Canonico, Pier Luigi Buttigieg, Enrique Montes, Frank E. Muller-Karger, Carol Stepien, Dawn J. Wright, Abigail Benson, Brian Helmuth, Mark John Costello, Isabel Sousa-Pinto, Hanieh Saeedi, Jan Newton, Ward Appeltans, Nina Bednaršek, Levente Bodrossy, Benjamin D. Best, Angelika Brandt, Kelly D Goodwin, Katrin Iken, Antonio C Marquez, Patricia Miloslavich, Martin Ostrowski, Woody Turner, Eric P Achterberg, Tom Barry, Omar DeFeo, Gregorio Bigatti, Lea-Anne Henry, Berta Ramiro-Sánchez, Pablo Durán, Telmo Morato, J. Murray Roberts, Ana Garcia-Alegre, Mar Sacau Cuadrado, Bramley Murton
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Frontiers in Marine Science
Index ID 70204470
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Core Science Analytics and Synthesis