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1st census shows life in planet ocean is richer, more connected, more altered than expected

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More than 300 leaders of the Census community meet 4-7 October in London at the Royal Institution of Great Britain, the Royal Society, and Natural History Museum to share their decade of results and consider their implications.

A sequel to the Census will be explored during the London meetings and at the World Conference on Marine Biodiversity next September in Aberdeen, Scotland.

Legacies of the first Census

Legacies of the first Census - knowledge, technology, and habits of global co-operation -- will transmute its effort and expense into investment. These include:

  • OBIS, sometimes called a "macroscope," a tool to reveal large patterns and grasp meaning in millions of marine life observations around the globe. OBIS is the world's largest marine species data archive, compiling centuries of observations to which Census scientists added their own in a freely accessible public infrastructure for research.

  • Baselines of biodiversity, distribution, and abundance to assess damage from future oil spills and pollution or from climate change, such as warming water or a changing ocean chemistry.

  • Findings recorded in books and reports, most freely accessible online.

  • Sampling protocols and standards for information collection and archiving, imparting order and comparability around the globe and through time.

  • Dependable information to improve national ocean policy and management, and the international Convention on Biological Diversity and other agreements to protect high seas resources, sustain fisheries, and regulate seabed mining.

  • Means to identify the species of a specimen, even from a fish scale, using DNA barcoding.

  • Marine elements of the incipient Global Earth Observation System of Systems, including:

  • A growing g

Contact: Terry Collins
Census of Marine Life

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1st census shows life in planet ocean is richer, more connected, more altered than expected
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