The Southern California Coastal Ocean Observing System (SCCOOS) is the U.S. IOOS Region that provides coverage from Point Conception south to the Mexico border.  The primary goal of SCCOOS is to provide the scientific data and information needed to inform decision-making and better understand the changing conditions of the coastal ocean in Southern California.  SCCOOS has aligned its priorities and objectives with the focus areas designated by U.S. Integrated Ocean Observing System (IOOS®), as identified by users and stakeholders throughout the nation.

Contact Information:  Clarissa Anderson, Executive Director,

SCCOOS Website

SCCOOS Harmful Algae & Red Tide Regional Monitoring Program

About the Southern California Region

As the regional observing system for Southern California, SCCOOS has developed the capabilities to support short-term decision-making and long-term assessment by implementing and leveraging biological, chemical, and physical observations, many of which are available in near real-time.

SCCOOS works with local, state, and federal agencies, resource managers, industry, policy-makers, educators, scientists, non-governmental organizations, and the public to make ocean and coastal data and information more widely available in a variety of formats.  Representatives include public health, regional water control boards, ocean dischargers that include sewer districts and municipalities, private industry including energy producers, marine safety officers, local Navy and Coast Guard personnel, and the commercial shipping industry.  These efforts will ensure that products are useful and easy to access, while preserving the necessary detail to support the scientific and educational communities.

SCCOOS continues to explore new visualizations and technologies to make data and products more comprehensible and widely available.  In order to achieve an effective outreach and education strategy that fully engages a wide range of audiences, SCCOOS focuses on developing projects through partnerships on the local, regional, and national levels.  SCCOOS collaborates with the Central and Northern California Ocean Observing System (CeNCOOS) on statewide issues and formed a Joint Strategic Advisory Committee, of users and stakeholders across the state, to create a unified and coordinated approach to ocean observing in California.  SCCOOS is also committed to contributing to larger ocean observing collaborations regionally, nationally, and internationally.

Activities that SCCOOS undertakes are as follows:

  • Marine Operations: To advance integrated, customized products that are critical for safe and efficient navigation, search and rescue, and oil spill response;
  • Coastal Hazards: To promote safe recreational use of beaches and provide warnings of wave and tide-induced coastal inundation;
  • Climate Variability and Change: To monitor climate trends and environmental effects on the Southern California Bight by collecting physical, chemical, and biological time series; and
  • Ecosystems, Fisheries and Water Quality:  Monitoring Harmful algal blooms, hypoxia; protecting drinking water; ocean acidification, beach & near shore water quality; and ecosystem based management.