Seas under threat

As the size of the human population and the scale of economic activity rise around the world, our seas are increasingly impacted as they are used as a source of resources, as a convenient dumping ground for pollutants, and are affected by climate change.  Research at NOC examines these various impacts, both to quantify the changes that the oceans are undergoing and to investigate ways in which we can improve the stewardship of our seas.

Marine pollution

Because of its size and remoteness, the ocean is a often used as a convenient place to dispose of pollutants

Mineral extraction

Coastal management practice, pollution and climate change are altering the ocean and displacing ecological systems

Over exploitation

The ocean is a rich source of valuable resources, but being open access makes it difficult to manage sustainably

Climate impacts

The ocean is a dynamic part of the climate system and is being changed by human activities just like other parts of the Earth

Ocean acidification

As well as causing climate change, CO2 is also dissolving in the ocean and increasing the acidity of seawater.

Shipping transport

Actually doing the science in the oceans is a massive challenge

Projects and collaborations

Collaboration with world leading groups, including significant partnering with the universities of Southampton and Liverpool, is the core of our marine research and technology endeavour. NOC is undertaking a number of projects that address a diverse range of threats to our seas


Research Groups

Click on the links below to find out more about the NOC science and technology group's involvement in 'Oceans under threat' research

Information for…


The outputs of research generate new knowledge about the oceans. Transferring scientific knowledge to support business and industry is an important part of our NOC remit.



Our research is intended to tackle the big environmental issues facing the world. Research priorities will include the oceans' role in climate change, sea level change and the future of the Arctic Ocean.



The University of Southampton and the University of Liverpool both offer a range of highly regarded undergraduate and post-graduate degrees in Ocean and Earth Science.



For any media or press enquiries to the National Oceanography Centre follow the more link below. Please note the centre's press office is staffed from 0830 to 1730, Monday to Friday.



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Delivery Partners

Delivery Partners helping to provide marine science national capability.


Marine Science Community

The creation of a wider association of Universities and research institutions to support wider engagement of the NOC with the marine science community is now underway.



The National Oceanographic Library is a national resource for the UK marine science community.


Principal scientists

All updated information for cruise participants can be found using the Marine Facilities Planning website: