The Eyes on the Ocean™ Newsletter is an informal way of keeping you up-to-date on U.S. IOOS® activities.

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From the Director:

Last month, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo announced historic funding for NOAA under the Inflation Reduction Act. It provides $3.3 billion for NOAA to build on its commitment to help Americans – including tribes and vulnerable populations – prepare, adapt, and build resilience to weather and climate events; improve supercomputing capacity and research on weather, oceans, and climate; strengthen NOAA’s hurricane hunter aircraft and fleet; and replace aging NOAA facilities.

NOAA has a key role to play in helping prepare and support our nation as we face the challenges of a changing climate. Under the Inflation Reduction Act, NOAA is directed to invest funds to support the development of a climate ready nation. These funds, in concert with the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law investments, are the largest direct investment to date in our Nation’s coastal climate and economic resilience. The U.S. Integrated Ocean Observing System (IOOS®) has been entrusted with a portion of those funds to invest in our national observing system and in partnerships with public and private entities to better understand ocean processes and develop new approaches and solutions that support Coastal Communities and Climate Resilience.

We will make more announcements as funding opportunities are published, but in the meantime, check out the “Grants & Funding Opportunities” section below for more information on open opportunities including funding to build a Climate Ready Workforce and the NOAA Climate Resilience Regional Challenge.


From the U.S. IOOS Office:

  • IOOS Advisory Committee Holds Successful Public Meeting: On June 27-29, the U.S. IOOS Advisory Committee held a successful public meeting in Moss Landing, California. The Committee was hosted by the Central and Northern California Ocean Observing System (CeNCOOS), one of the 11 IOOS Regional Associations, which is co-located at the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI). Over the course of the two and a half day meeting, the Committee received numerous briefings on west coast ocean observation activities from experts at CeNCOOS, MBARI, Monterey Bay Aquarium, Fleet Numerical Meteorology and Oceanography Center, Office of Naval Research, NOAA, and marine technology industries (all presentations and other meeting materials can be found on the IOOS website here). Members spent time further deliberating and developing recommendations around their current work plan topics (marine life, National Oceanographic Partnership Program, and enterprise excellence) and discussing plans for soliciting new members in the coming months. The Committee expects to have draft recommendations by the end of the calendar year. Look for a full story on the IOOS website later this month!
  • Estimating the Value of Ocean Observation Data: Economist Impact's World Ocean Initiative will be estimating the global value of ocean observation data streams to marine-centered climate change mitigation activities. Through this independent work, Economist Impact and its funders aim to bolster the case for improved ocean observations, climate-change mitigation efforts and research on the economic value of data for the blue economy. This research has been commissioned by Canada’s Fisheries Department, Fugro, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Ocean Frontier Institute, and Syndicate 708. The survey can be found here. The deadline is 14th July, 2023.
  • GLOS welcomes new Chief Executive Officer: Jennifer Boehme has served on the GLOS board since 2015, as the chair since 2017, and currently works as an environmental scientist at the International Joint Commission (IJC). She has also served on the board of the International Association for Great Lakes Research, and is the co-chair of the Association's IDEA+ Committee. She has worked at the IJC over the past over a decade to address Great Lakes water quality and pollution issues to protect human health, collaborating across borders, organizations, and agencies. Read more about Jennifer on the GLOS website!
  • Welcome LCDR Aaron Colohan! After 6 years in the U.S. Navy, Aaron has been with NOAA Corps for the past 12 years serving aboard NOAA Ships Ronald H. Brown, Okeanos Explorer and most recently as Executive Officer aboard Oregon II. He has also held positions in the Executive Affairs Division of NOAA’s Office of Marine and Aviation Operations as well as the NOAA Search and Rescue Satellite Aided Tracking Operations Officer. LCDR Colohan holds a B.S. in Anthropology as well as an M.S. in Environmental Studies from Virginia Commonwealth University. He reported to IOOS in June and is excited to join the IOOS team!
  • Welcome Phoebe Brache, IOOS Lapenta Intern: This summer, IOOS and GCOOS will host a Lapenta Intern working on a project called “Machine learning and Deep Learning to support IOOS Ocean Data Quality Control”. Phoebe is originally from Boulder, Colorado and currently a rising senior at the University of Washington in Seattle studying Environmental Engineering.
  • From the IOOS Association: 
    • No update.

Observation Subsystem and Sensor Technologies:

  • Surface Current Mapping
    • IOOS HF-Radar Network and GOOS: The IOOS HF-Radar National Network has been accepted as a mature network within the Global Ocean Observing System (GOOS)!  Thank you to MARACOOS’s Hugh Roarty for representing the Network at the June 6–8, 2023 GOOS Observation Coordination Group’s 14th Meeting (OCG-14) in Cape Town, South Africa—and for all the work he and all IOOS HF-radar operators have done to advance the status of the network within the larger GOOS from “emerging” to now “mature”.
    • New HFR in Nags Head, NC: Congratulations to SECOORA on their installation of a long-range CODAR SeaSonde® at Jennette’s Pier in Nags Head, NC!  The oceanographic HF-radar station was relocated from Duck, NC, with support from partners NASA and North Carolina Renewable Ocean Energy Program (NCROEP), to improve its field-of-view and to upgrade it to better measure Gulf Stream variability off Cape Hatteras to help examine if it’s a viable renewable ocean hydrokinetic energy resource for North Carolina.  This work is a component of a NASA Surface Water & Ocean Topography (SWOT) adopt-a-crossover campaign to study the Gulf Stream at its separation point from the continental margin off Cape Hatteras and the Stream’s influence on the complex current confluence—comparing the new high-resolution altimetry from a satellite launched in December 2022 at a cross-over location with HFR and other in-situ observations including gliders, current- and pressure-recording inverted echo sounders (CPIES), and moored acoustic Doppler current profiler (ADCP) made by this team with members from the University of North Carolina, East Carolina University Coastal Studies Institute, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, and the Naval Research Laboratory.
    • New HFR in the Gulf of Mexico: Texas A&M’s Geochemical and Environmental Research Group recently installed a new station named GERG CODAR (PMGC). Located south of the Padre Island (PINS) station, this is the sixth long-range CODAR station on the Texas Shelf and the installation extends the HFR coverage on the Shelf. Research, Applied Technology, Education Services, Inc. (RATES), which commissioned the first CODAR network in Texas in 2001, is working to fill data gaps in Texas Bays to improve and enhance hydrodynamic models applied to spill trajectory, storm surge and contaminant transport models. RATES has installed five new radars in Texas since the beginning of 2023 — three in Galveston Bay and two stations in Sabine Lake. Read more here.
  • Gliders 
    • NOAA deploys drones in the ocean and atmosphere to advance hurricane forecasting: Media gathered on June 27 at the NOAA Aircraft Operations Center to tour Hurricane Hunter aircraft and learn about uncrewed systems used for hurricane research. Kathy Bailey, IOOS Office attended to represent the hurricane glider effort and spoke to Hill staffers in the morning and media in the afternoon about the value of gliders for subsurface sampling of ocean features known to impact hurricane intensity. NOAA and partners are improving hurricane forecasting by harnessing the power of new technologies and working to coordinate these technologies to predict hurricane track, intensity, and rapid intensification. Read more here: 
    • PacIOOS Completes Seaglider Mission: PacIOOS Seaglider SG523 ran its first mission in almost 10 years from the north shore of Oʻahu to the eastern tip of Maui (Feb 2 - May 10). The goal was to measure the seasonal phytoplankton blooms that occur off the Maui Nui island group. Piloted by PacIOOS Operations Coordinator Chip Young, with technical assistance from Steve Poulos (University of Hawaiʻi), the Seaglider completed 436 dives to approximately 900m (2,950 ft) depth. Each dive collected data on salinity, temperature, dissolved oxygen and three fluorometry wavelengths throughout the water column. The data can be visualized via PacIOOS Voyager or downloaded from PacIOOS data services.
  • Buoys & Moorings
    • Monitoring data from two research reserves is now live on GLOS’ Seagull, with a buoy on the way: Last year, staff at the Lake Superior National Estuarine Research Reserve (LSNERR) reached out to GLOS because they were interested in deploying a buoy. They wanted to better understand the water quality impacts of the St. Louis River Estuary on Lake Superior, and vice versa. The buoy is set for deployment in Spring 2024 and live data will be available on Seagull. Read the full story here!
  • Harmful Algal Blooms 
    • Toxic Algal Bloom Suspected in Dolphin and Sea Lion Deaths in Southern California: The rapid growth of harmful algae along parts of the Southern California Coast is believed to have killed hundreds of California sea lions and close to 60 dolphins in June. Read more from NOAA Fisheries here and you can view a CNN interview with SCCOOS Executive Director Clarissa Anderson discussing the bloom and the science SCCOOS is conducting to monitor the bloom. 
    • NHABON Webinars: 
      • September 13, 3 - 4 pm EDT: NHABON Webinar #9: The Economic Impact of HABs
      • June Webinar “Observing needs for HAB Events and Response: Regional Highlights” recording available now: 
  • Marine Life
    • ATN Steering Group Holds 15th Meeting: The ATN Steering Group (SG) held its 15th meeting on June 20th. Topics included updates on the IOOS Marine Life Program, funding, ATN priorities, Data Assembly Center status, and regional projects. The SG had positive feedback for the ongoing growth of the ATN DAC and priorities for improvement, particularly with respect to expanding support for acoustic telemetry networks and multi-sensor biologging tags. 
    • ATN at ICFT 2023: Dr. Megan McKinzie, the ATN Data Coordinator, recently attended the International Conference on Fish Telemetry, June 11-16 in Sete, France. It was a great opportunity to engage with the international fish tracking community, learn about new science and technologies, and network on behalf of ATN.


Data Management and Cyberinfrastructure (DMAC) Subsystem and Tools Built on IOOS Data:

  • Regional Ocean Model for the Western Pacific: A new Regional Ocean Modeling System (ROMS) has been developed for the Western North Pacific, including Guam, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI), the Republic of Palau, and the western half of the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM). This model provides a 7-day, 3-hourly forecast of salinity, water temperature (surface and subsurface), current velocity, and sea surface height at a resolution of approximately 8-km (5-mi). This latest data product, developed by PacIOOS co-Investigator and UH professor Dr. Brian Powell and lab, can be found on the PacIOOS webpage, and PacIOOS Voyager
  • SAVE THE DATE! 2023 IOOS DMAC Annual Meeting: IOOS is pleased to announce that the DMAC Meeting will take place Tuesday September 26 to Thursday September 28.  Please save these dates in your calendars.  We are planning to return this year to an in-person meeting format with online attendance available for those unable to travel. Please send any questions or suggestions about the meeting/agenda to the IOOS DMAC team at     
  • New Seagull features: pinning, sorting, and list view: GLOS recently released several long asked-for features on Seagull, including one that lets you easily sort parameters by type. Check them out and let GLOS know what you think! Read more here.
    • No update.

Modeling and Analysis Subsystem:   

  • IOOS Model Viewer featured on The Weather Channel: Art Allen (ret. USCG) was interviewed by the Weather Channel speaking on the challenges of the ill fated Titan submersible search. As part of the interview, he highlighted the IOOS Model Viewer showing water temperature and currents data and dropped a ‘virtual buoy’ to demonstrate a time-series plot in the North Atlantic. The interview was conducted prior to the wreckage being discovered. IOOS sends our condolences and sympathies to the families and friends of the Titan's crew.  

Around the Regions:

  • PacIOOS Executive Committee Meeting: Members of the PacIOOS Governing Council Executive Committeemet on Oʻahu at the end of May for the first in-person meeting since 2019! The meeting began with an overview of ocean carbon chemistry and an up-close examination of the CRIMP2 Water Quality Buoy in Kāneʻohe Bay. PacIOOS leadership presented programmatic updates and an overview of the anticipated budget. Committee members from American Samoa, Palau, CNMI, and Hawaiʻi discussed current issues facing their islands with regard to ocean observing, and brainstormed ways PacIOOS could provide support. Major needs include forecast tools to help coastal communities and governments be better prepared for flooding and sea level rise and more tailored products to help communities proactively respond to events along their shorelines.  
  • Former CARICOOS intern appointed Meteorologist In Charge in San Juan: Congratulations are in order for Ernesto Rodríguez, the new Meteorologist in Charge at the NOAA National Weather Service (NWS) - Weather Forecast Office (WFO) in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Rodríguez, who has been part of the NWS WFO for 15 years, completed a master’s degree in Physical Oceanography and was part of the first students to graduate from the Meteorology program at the University of Puerto Rico, Mayaguez. As a student and research assistant, he focused on numerical modeling associated with storm surges, tsunamis, and waves in the CARICOOS region. 

Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, Accessibility:

  • Request for input: Ocean Justice Strategy: The Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) and Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP), on behalf of the Ocean Policy Committee (OPC), request input from all interested parties to inform the development of an Ocean Justice Strategy. The Ocean Justice Strategy will describe the vision, goals, and high-level objectives for coordinating and guiding ocean justice activities across the Federal Government. It may also serve as a reference for Tribal, Territorial, State, and local governments, regional management bodies, and non-governmental groups. Access the full Federal Register Notice here. 
  • Hawaiʻi Community Tagging Program: The Hawaiʻi Community Tagging Program (HCTP) is a collaborative research program focused on the use of advanced telemetry technologies to elucidate shark movement behavior and habitat requirements. The HCTP seeks to fill data gaps identified as critical for implementation of effective conservation for shark populations impacted by commercial fisheries. This work relies on the efforts and local ecological knowledge of the fishing community to deploy tags, collect data, and pursue practical, sustainable solutions for mortality mitigation. Learn more about this PacIOOS collaboration at
  • Engaging with High School Students: Members of the NANOOS Enabling Change working group hosted the Seattle Maritime High School 10th grade class for a tour of the R/V Rachel Carson and water sampling off the UW Oceanography dock. This Project Based Learning school, which started in fall 2021, gives students an opportunity to learn about and explore the wide range of careers in the maritime sector.

Interagency and International Collaboration/News:

  • UN Decade of Ocean Science For Sustainable Development Updates 
    • A new wave of transformative Decade Actions boosts the Ocean Decade global movement on the road to 2030: On the occasion of the global celebration of World Oceans Day on 8 June 2023, the Ocean Decade announces the official endorsement of 47 new Decade Actions, strengthening the momentum for ocean knowledge-based solutions. 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 ocean science issues such as community resilience to ocean hazards, creation of a digital representation of the ocean, sustainable ocean economy, ocean literacy and capacity development. Read more here: 
    • An historic achievement: Treaty of the High Seas is adopted: The UNCLOS BBNJ (biodiversity beyond national jurisdiction) Agreement on the High Seas was adopted by consensus and standing ovation during the United Nations meeting in New York on June 19th. This Treaty is key to protect the ocean, promote equity and fairness, tackle environmental degradation, fight climate change, and prevent biodiversity loss in the high seas. The BBNJ Treaty sets up a procedure to establish large-scale marine protected areas in the high seas. Achieving the ambitions of the agreement will require globally coordinated observing of marine life that can be delivered through the GOOS BioEco Essential Ocean Variables. Read more here:
  • Ocean Observatories Initiative (OOI) News:
    • Data Explorer Town Hall July 26 to Demo New Features: Mark your calendars for July 26, 2023 at 1 pm Eastern for an OOI Town Hall to demonstrate the new features of Data Explorer.  Register for the Demo Town Hall here.
    • Collaborative Data Partnership in Olympic Coast National Marine Sanctuary Yielding Benefits: A new data initiative involving more than 20 years of oceanographic data from Olympic Coast National Marine Sanctuary (OCNMS) promises to provide scientists and the public with a more robust picture of changing ocean conditions within the sanctuary and Northeast Pacific Ocean. Funded by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Climate Program Office, a team from Oregon State University is working to make 23 years of sanctuary mooring data and data from CTD (Conductivity, Temperature, and Depth) casts available through publicly accessible data repositories. The three-year project will also combine the sanctuary’s data with complementary data sets in the region, including data from the Ocean ObservatorIes Initiative Coastal Endurance Array. Read more here: 
    • PI-Added Sensors/Equipment Requests for Pioneer Array MAB Accepted After Array is Operational: We are very excited about deploying the Pioneer Array in its new location in the southern Mid-Atlantic Bight (MAB), including new designs and new sensors. The MAB location and design require new permitting, new engineering, and inclusion of new sensors as part of the core Array measurements.  OOI is optimistic that we are on track to deploy the new Array in Spring 2024 as planned. Read more here: 
  • MTS Celebrates 60 years: “MTS is, at its core, a member organization,” commented Chris Ostrander, MTS Chief Executive Officer. “We exist to support the community of businesses, institutions, and people that work to advance ocean sciences, innovation, and marine technology. The fact that MTS has been in existence for sixty years is a testament to its members.” Read the full press release here.
  • United Nations Ocean Decade Endorses Alaska Mapping Program: The United Nations Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development officially endorsed Seascape Alaska, a regional mapping campaign led by NOAA's Integrated Ocean and Coastal Mapping program. Seascape Alaska began in 2021 in response to the 2020 National Strategy for Mapping, Exploring, and Characterizing the United States Exclusive Economic Zone and the Alaska Coastal Mapping Strategy. With 66% of Alaska's coastal and ocean waters currently unmapped, the campaign seeks to fully map U.S. waters off Alaska by 2040. Seascape Alaska includes efforts to gather bathymetric data and understand habitat, seafloor, archaeological, biological, chemical, and other oceanic attributes. This project brings government and nongovernment sectors together to share mapping plans and advance technical innovations to more efficiently map and characterize the area in conjunction with Seabed 2030 — a collaborative project to inspire the complete mapping of the world’s ocean by 2030.
  • Rip Currents: Preparedness and Prevention - NOAA Ocean Podcast: Episode 66: Rip currents pose a threat to those that spend time in the ocean or Great Lakes. In this podcast episode, Dr. Gregory Dusek, senior scientist with NOAA’s National Ocean Service, talks with us about rip currents, NOAA’s national rip current forecast model, and ways to protect yourself and others from this public safety risk. You can learn more about rip current safety here
  • CO-OPS Joins SECOORA at the Southeast Water Levels Workshop: CO-OPS joined representatives from 11 federal and state agencies, four private companies, and nine academic institutions for the Water Levels in the Southeast: Understanding Tools, Products, and Gaps Workshop in Jacksonville, Florida. CO-OPS provided a high-level overview of its program and demonstrated its sensing equipment and installation requirements. Hosted by the Southeast Coastal Ocean Observing Regional Association (SECOORA), the event featured presentations from experts operating Southeastern water level gauge networks, including CO-OPS, the Association, the Florida Department of Environmental Protection, North Carolina Emergency Management, and United States Geological Survey. Participants discussed their programmatic structures and missions, existing technological approaches, products, and current and emerging needs for the field. Workshop discussions addressed a wide spectrum of water level applications. CO-OPs will attend a similar workshop later this year, which will be hosted by the Northeastern Regional Association of Coastal Ocean Observing Systems.
  • CO-OPS and OCM to Co-develop New Sea Level Analysis Tool: CO-OPS and OCM staff gathered in Charleston, South Carolina, to discuss the codevelopment of a new, user-driven sea level analysis tool that would deliver the best available sea level data in one location. Coupled with visualizations and information resources, the tool will help users access and fully apply the data to make informed decisions about sea level rise. During two days of productive discussions, CO-OPS and OCM scoped the tool’s data and features and laid out a clear timeline for co-developing the tool from start to finish. These discussions were also cross-cultural learning opportunities for each office’s workflows and expertise, which will help support effective collaboration in the future. The new tool is being funded through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law.
  • NGS Releases 2023 West Coast Pre-Event Data Online: NGS released the 2023 West Coast pre-event data online. Pre-event imagery is collected to provide baseline images to support future emergency response efforts. Aerial imagery is a crucial tool for determining the extent of the damage inflicted by flooding and comparing baseline coastal areas to assess the damage to major ports and waterways, coastlines, critical infrastructure, and coastal communities. This imagery provides a cost-effective way to better understand the damage sustained to both property and the environment.
  • CO-OPS Releases New Post-Event Peak Water Levels Product: CO-OPS launched a post-event peak water level product, providing users access to NOS’s peak water level data and the National Centers for Environmental Information’s storm tracks following a tropical storm, hurricane, or other significant nontropical storm. NOS’s water level observations are crucial for the National Weather Service during and following storm surge events for communicating flood impacts to coastal communities. The National Hurricane Center uses NOS water level stations with additional coastal observations to determine peak storm surge following tropical cyclones. CO-OPS works continuously to provide accurate, timely, and reliable water level observations and other oceanographic data to the nation. During periods of extreme weather, water level observations are particularly valuable for coastal communities responding to high-water events.
  • NOAA Announces the Gulf of Mexico Annual Hypoxia Forecast: NOAA forecasts this summer’s Gulf of Mexico hypoxic zone or “dead zone” — an area of low-to-no oxygen that can kill fish and other marine life — to be approximately 4,155 square miles. The 2023 forecasted area is below the 36-year average size of 5,364 square miles and substantially less than the record of 8,776 square miles set in 2017. The low oxygen levels near the bottom are insufficient to support most marine life and have long-term impacts on living marine resources that are unable to swim or move away. The annual prediction is based on U.S. Geological Survey river flow and nutrient data.

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