We began 2021 with much celebration when the impact of our publicly funded work was independently evaluated as excellent across the three areas assessed. I was proud and delighted to hear the NOC hailed as ‘making a vital contribution to the UK’s leading position in environmental science’.
As well as demonstrating our expertise in ocean research, the evaluation also shows the NOC provides a great environment for scientists, engineers and innovators to thrive, delivering positive societal impact. Our ambition in 2022 is to continue to grow from this solid foundation and expand our endeavour to provide public benefit in all we do.
Outstanding examples of this scientific excellence in 2021 include our Exports programme, a global research project with two other world-leading organisations – NASA and Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. Using the RRS Discovery and underwater gliders, our scientists and engineers took vital ocean measurements of the changing Atlantic Ocean to understand how it will evolve as a result of climate change and human exploitation. This is a great example of how global collaboration can truly inform international policy and ocean literacy.
Our activities and influence around national and international policy included a successful contribution to the G7 Decade Navigation Plan, shaping UK co-ordination for the UN Ocean Decade, engaging in discussions at COP26, and supporting marine science collaboration within the UK.
We have started to build strong partnerships with industry and donors and would like to thank ‘10% for the Ocean’ for their donation and support this year, and also West P&I whose support has allowed us to widen participation in pioneering oceanography to young researchers across the world. These illustrate how, as a newly independent charity that benefits from a stable environment and long-term strategy, we can now develop philanthropic partnerships to expand our work in new ways.
Thank you to our Board and every team at the NOC. Together we have continued to lead in ocean science and innovation, in spite of many challenges. Next year promises to be an exciting one for us, with COP26 having amplified our voice and accelerated global awareness of the ocean’s role in managing our climate.
Professor Ed Hill CBE
Professor Ed Hill CBE, Chief Executive
Professor Angela Hatton, Chief Scientist
Julie Pringle-Stewart, Chief Operating Officer