From managing coastal, marine, and water resources to planning for a changing climate, ocean health is the thread that links across state agencies, policies, and mandates. In partnership with the Ocean Protection Council, we are igniting a conversation about what ‘ocean health’ means to our diverse coastal communities.
We are bringing scientific and management communities together in pursuit of a shared vision of ocean health.
FINDING COMMON GROUND
Bringing together scientists, decision-makers, tribal representatives and ocean constituents in a public discussion in August 2014, we collaboratively identified how a vision of ocean health offers a shared goal, opportunities to collaborate, and a foundation to celebrate collective progress.
PUTTING OUR STATEWIDE MPA NETWORK TO WORK
California’s MPAs are the backbone of this dialogue. As we build a partnership model for long-term monitoring – designed to track changes in our coastal oceans – we are also putting the MPAs to work as tools in California’s toolbox to adaptively manage for climate change.
Research and monitoring in these natural laboratories can give us the knowledge and capacity needed to build resilience to a changing future. As we pursue a new monitoring framework for ocean acidification and other ocean stressors, ocean health is the unifying concept that brings these efforts together.
PURSUING NEW OPPORTUNITIES FOR SCIENCE
Rather than a single definition, exploring ocean health is a process that involves bringing together scientists and managers across traditionally disparate disciplines and jurisdictions. Ocean Science Trust has teamed up with the Southern California Coastal Water Research Project (SCCWRP) to work across water quality and natural resource disciplines to understand how to detect and measure the effects of multiple stressors on our ocean ecosystems.