NOAA’s National Marine Ecosystem Status website provides a one-stop shop for key data on marine ecosystems

The website is a useful resource for trends, links, and other information related to essential US coastal and marine ecosystem indicator data.

Today, NOAA announces the relaunch of its State of National Marine Ecosystems Website, a tool that provides easy access to NOAA’s wide range of important data on coastal and marine ecosystems. The website provides a starting point for educators, outreach specialists and the interested public to explore the state of seven major marine ecosystems in the United States and the nation. The relaunch of the site includes updated indicator data, new regional coverage for some existing indicators and a whole new Indicator of distribution of marine species.

One stop shop for data on marine ecosystem indicators

Marine ecosystems – organisms, the physical environment and their interactions in a specific area – provide food, jobs, security, well-being and other services to tens of millions of people in hundreds thousands of ocean-dependent businesses across the United States. As the national earth science agency, NOAA monitors and analyzes the broadest range of essential data on the United States’ coastal and marine ecosystems. Until last year, it was difficult to find all of this information online in one place. This website is a tool that consolidates data from NOAA and partner agencies. This data is presented in a way that is easy to understand and use for members of the public and scientists.

The website is designed for a large audience and features detailed visualizations like the one pictured above, which displays the annual average sea surface temperature in the large marine ecosystem of the northeastern United States.

“We are delighted to deploy the updated State of Marine Ecosystems website. The website brings together the ecosystem work that NOAA conducts in the marine environment and presents this information in a flexible and user-friendly format, ”said Cisco Werner, vice chair of the NOAA Scientific Council. Chair. Visitors to the site can explore specific thematic areas at the national or regional level. Users can also access general information or learn more, by logging into specific NOAA websites across the organization. Web National Marine Ecosystems Status is a tool that managers, scientists, stakeholders and the general public can use to learn more about our marine ecosystems and use that information to make informed decisions. “

This website presents the status and trends of key data on climatological, physico-chemical, biological and human needs and activities. The data is organized by region and theme, and can also be viewed at the national level. Some examples include coastal populations and engagement in recreational fishing. As a result, educators, advocates and the public can easily access region-specific data related to the indicator of their choice. They can also find easy-to-understand summaries and links to the raw data and to additional resources. Time series figures include symbols and gauges that describe how recent values ​​of an indicator compare to the overall series.

The website also represents an opportunity to showcase the diversity of important work being done within NOAA, says Craig McLean, NOAA Deputy Administrator for Oceanic and Atmospheric Research:

“This is a great NOAA product that shows the American public, educators, students and a wide range of constituents the health and condition of America’s marine ecosystems, all in one place. This product also showcases the important work of NOAA, to understand our marine ecosystems and contribute to the new blue economy. “

New data, new indicator information and increased clarity

The relaunch of the website represents the first major update since its introduction almost exactly a year ago. The new features of the site:

– Update of the data of the existing indicators
– Reformatted interpretation language associated with all indicators
– New information tab “Science based on ecosystems”
– Links to additional resources to encourage users to further explore the data on other NOAA websites
– New indicator of distribution of marine species
– Newly Expanded Indicators of Coastal Tourism Economy and Corals

Marine species distribution indicator

Picture

New Marine species distribution indicator tracks changes in the geographic locations where a species is found both latitudinally and in the water column. Some species move naturally from place to place throughout the year, depending on the seasons, food, or other factors. However, as climate change causes ocean waters to warm, populations of many species are shifting. Some head to the poles (north in the northern hemisphere) or deeper to cooler waters, allowing them to track their preferred temperature. Understanding where and how fast marine species move is important for coastal communities. These changing distributions can affect the species available for fishing, recreation and cultural practices.

The coral indicator is taken from NOAA National Coral Reef Monitoring Program. It now includes sub-scores for important components of coral reef ecosystems: benthic, climate, fish, and human connections. This increased level of detail allows users to access more information on specific aspects of coral health.
Coastal Tourism Economics

The coastal tourism indicator now includes measures of employment and earnings in addition to the original measure of GDP. All three indicators represent important components of the human dimension of our coastal and ocean ecosystems in the United States.

Explore the recently updated National Marine Ecosystem Status website and let us know what you think by emailing us at [email protected] If you have an indicator that you would like to suggest adding to the site in future updates, please see our Selection criteria for indicators and use the form at the bottom to submit your proposal.

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