Ocean Decade endorses three new NOC-led Actions

The National Oceanography Centre (NOC) is proud to announce three projects, exploring global ocean impacts on society and climate, have been endorsed as Actions in the context of the United Nations Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development 2021–2030 (the ‘Ocean Decade’).

The ocean connects, sustains and supports us all. Yet its health is at a tipping point, and so is the well-being of all that depends on it. With the aim of achieving the Ocean Decade vision of ‘the science we need for the ocean we want’, the newly endorsed Decade Actions address priority issues including marine pollution, management and restoration of marine ecosystems and the ocean-climate nexus.

Professor Angela Hatton, Director of Data, Science and Technology at the NOC, said “I am delighted that the three projects have been endorsed as Actions by the Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development. The NOC is proud to lead and contribute to Actions that enhance our ability to connect communities at a basin scale, understand the impact on the deep sea and predict how climate change will impact coastal ecosystems and communities.”

Learn more about all the endorsed Actions; visit the Ocean Decade website.

Future Coastal Ocean Climates (FLAME)

Whilst climate change is increasingly better understood and modelled on global scales, climate impacts are most acutely felt across the coastal ocean, where human populations are reliant upon ocean resources and services and where they are most vulnerable to coastal hazards. FLAME will generate innovative, high-resolution, downscaled decadal to centennial projections of future coastal ocean climates and the impacts on coastal ecosystems, hazards, services and resources at the local-regional scales necessary for informed decision making across a range of polar, temperate, subtropical and tropical regions. It will achieve this by making a step-change in regional Earth System Model process fidelity and climate downscaling approaches, and by providing new projections, downscaling, predictive and hazard assessment tools. FLAME sets a high-level framework to be collectively pursued throughout the Decade, aiming to inform future IPCC reporting. It will use CoastPredict, other Decade programmes and partner stakeholder networks to turn advances in understanding and predictive ability into actionable products that can inform climate change adaptation and mitigation solutions.

Challenges Addressed:

  • Challenge 5: Ocean-Climate Nexus

Dr Jo Hopkins, Physical Oceanographer at the NOC and FLAME lead, said, “FLAME will provide a platform from which an expanding international community of future coastal ocean modellers and end-users can help drive forward the CoastPredict ambition of ‘A predicted global coastal ocean’. We have a wealth of expertise in coastal and shelf sea science at the NOC that we will be drawing upon to ensure that over the UN Decade of Ocean Science we make significant improvements to our understanding and projections of the coastal oceans responses to future climate.”

Connecting communities to Atlantic Ocean observing

Ocean observing is a necessary service to fulfil our collective stewardship responsibility and understand the effects of climate change on human life, economic, and environmental wellbeing. To fully realize this service, we must expand our view of the value of ocean observing and move towards a sustained observing system to deliver crucial information to stakeholders and policymakers. AtlantOS supports Atlantic basin scale implementation by identifying and fostering collaborative partnerships among user communities and ocean observing and data networks. AtlantOS is actively building formal relationships with international bodies and AtlantOS-connect will facilitate engagement with national and regional entities, connecting observing networks and providing visibility to the common challenges, needs and opportunities of Atlantic communities.

Challenges Addressed:

  • Challenge 7: Ocean Observations
  • Challenge 9: Capacity Development

Seabed Mining & Resilience To EXperimental impact

Our project aims to provide the critical scientific understanding and evidence base to reduce the risks of the developing deep-sea mining industry for polymetallic nodules. Our project team have secured access to data and test plans, to allow detailed experimental evaluation of impact and recovery from realistic mining disturbance on a decadal scale of vital relevance to understanding the long-term sustainability of deep-sea mining. The project aims to better understand the ecosystem in the Pacific abyss and how the different components interact and interconnect.

Challenges Addressed:

  • Challenge 1: Marine Pollution
  • Challenge 2: Protect and Restore Ecosystems
  • Challenge 4: Sustainable Ocean Economy

Find out more about our commitment to the Ocean Decade and the Sustainability Development Goals; visit our dedicated webpage.