Long term ocean observations allow us to better understand climate change and variability, and improve our forecasting of climate, weather, ocean status and environmental hazards and their impacts. Ocean information supports good policy and provides an evidence base for real-time decision-making, tracking the effectiveness of management actions, and guiding adaptive responses on the pathway to sustainable development. Developing our ability to provide relevant information at global, regional, and down to coastal scales, is vital to addressing local needs and building resilience. In addition to supporting sustainability, ocean knowledge and information have the power to generate profits and jobs in the marine economy. By 2030, the ocean economy, buoyed by growth in tourism, mariculture and renewable energy, is predicted to be a much larger component of our national economies.
The Global Ocean Observing System (GOOS) plays an essential role in coordinating the world’s distributed ocean observing systems. Together, with a broad ocean observing community, GOOS provides a pathway for the evolution of an integrated global system, ensuring that it meets the needs of the diverse array of end-users.
In the past three decades, GOOS and the global science community have made good progress on the development and coordination of ocean observations. Today, these observations provide the backbone for ocean and weather forecasts, deliver understanding of the ocean’s role in the global climate system, as well as the climate's impact on the ocean.
To meet the growing demands of policy makers, private sector users and the general public, we need a step change in the breadth and extent of the ocean observing system. We need a fully integrated global observing system that captures essential physical, chemical, biological, and ecological ocean properties, from global to local coastal scales - the Global Ocean Observing System 2030 Strategy is the pathway to achieve this.
Established in 1991, GOOS is co-sponsored by the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission of UNESCO, the World Meteorological Organization, the United Nations Environment Programme, and the International Science Council.
GOOS Strategy document
Who We Are
Observations & Data