The current status of ocean science around the world; executive summary
The ocean is the largest ecosystem on our planet, regulating change and variability in the climate system and supporting the global economy, nutrition, health and wellbeing, water supply and energy. The coastal zone is home to the majority of the world population; dependency on the ecosystem services provided by the ocean is likely to increase with population growth.
The ocean was once thought to be a vast and indefinitely resilient compartment of the Earth system, able to absorb practically all pressures of the human population, from resource exploitation to fisheries and aquaculture development to marine transport. However, according to the First World Ocean Assessment, our civilization is running out of time to avoid the detrimental cycle of decline in ocean health that will have dramatic repercussions on the ability of the ocean to keep providing the support we need.
To achieve global sustainability and adequate stewardship of the ocean, as called for in the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development (2030 Agenda), ocean science is crucial to understand and monitor the ocean, predict its health status and support decision-making to achieve Sustainable Development Goal 14 (SDG 14) “Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development”...
The report is intended to facilitate international ocean science cooperation and collaboration. It helps to identify gaps in science organization and capacity and develop options to optimize the use of scientific resources and advance ocean science and technology by sharing expertise and facilities, promoting capacity building and transferring marine technology. As the first consolidated assessment of global ocean science, the GOSR assists the science-policy interface and supports managers, policy-makers, governments and donors, as well as scientists beyond the ocean community.