Global compilation of shipboard biogeochemical time series

Ocean time series are one of the most valuable tools we have to monitor climate and marine ecosystem changes. The IOC in cooperation with the International Ocean Carbon Coordination Project (IOCCP) and the Ocean Carbon and Biogeochemistry Programme (OCB) have started a new initiative to increase the intercomparability of shipboard biogeochemical long term observations, so called ocean time series. They continuously provide major breakthroughs in understanding ecosystem variability, allow quantification of the ocean carbon cycle, and help understand the processes that link biodiversity, food webs, and changes in services that benefit human societies. The collective value of these data is greater than that provided by each time series individually, which is why we are compiling existing time series around the world. Under this perspective, we are asking for support to expand this list and encourage the scientific community to join the growing network.

The designations employed and the presentation of material in this map do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of IOC-UNESCO concerning the legal status of any country, territory, city or area or of its authorities, or concerning the delimitation of its frontiers or boundaries.

International Group for Marine Ecological Time Series (IGMETS)

The objective of the group is to compile and disseminate a comprehensive, integrated interpretation of global biogeochemical ocean changes as seen through time-series. The results in the outcome document integrate selected variables to detect holistic changes within different ocean regions, to explore plausible reasons and connections at a global level, and to highlight any regions that may be at greater risk of especially large changes.

This project is, in part, the continuation of the International Time-Series Methods Workshop held in November 2012, jointly organized by IOC-UNESCO, IOCCP and the OCB. The workshop convened representatives from 33 shipboard biogeochemical time-series sites to review current methodologies being used at the sites, with the aim of standardizing sampling and analytical protocols for key biogeochemical parameters being measured across sites. A key outcome of this workshop was the initiation of an international network of shipboard biogeochemical time-series sites.

The group is currently composed of 10 representatives of institutions involved in the time series compilation.

Further information and data can be access on the IGMETS website.

How can you contribute?

In collaboration with the workshop organizers, the IOC is compiling metadata from additional shipboard biogeochemical time-series sites, not represented at the workshop. This compilation will facilitate better coordination, communication, and data intercomparability among time-series. To help us achieve these goals, we need the support of the scientific community to:

  • Spread the word about our coordination efforts, and
  • Expand the list of participating time-series sites (see map above).

We encourage all biogeochemical shipboard time-series site representatives to join this growing network.

For more information and/or to obtain a metadata form for your time-series site(s), please contact us Kirsten Isensee (k.isensee(a) with copy to Heather Benway (OCB, hbenway(a) and Laura Lorenzoni (IOCCP time-series representative, laural(a)


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