OSPAR request on possible way forward with the handling of data and/or statistics, under OSPAR monitoring programmes and for the benefit of OSPAR assessment procedures, from monitoring devices generating large amounts of data
In relation to handling of data and statistics stemming from monitoring devices generating large amounts of data, OSPAR may make use of already existing catalogues and mechanisms for discovery, access, and assessing data confidence related to eutrophication (CMEMS, EMODnet Physics, and SAHFOS) and ocean acidification (CDIAC). ICES considers these existing coordinated services and programmes to be well structured, robust, and well managed. There is little benefit to OSPAR in replicating these metadata in ICES.
Despite the already extensive data sources (existing and novel monitoring methods) being compiled, there remain many gaps when combining complementary parameters for assessment purposes in, for example, spatial resolution, frequency of sampling, and standardization of sampling methods and/or models. In order to best exploit existing data in the OSPAR common procedure it is essential that a desired end product is identified by the assessment experts (i.e. an indicator and associated target). Once in place, appropriate parameters with specifications on the temporal and spatial resolution can be identified. These technical specifications with a specific assessment end product in mind can then be turned into data products that can be prepared and delivered according to the methodologies recommended by OSPAR experts. In this process novel monitoring method data sources (models, satellite and in situ observations) can be exploited directly or used to complement existing monitoring, thus bringing added value to OSPAR assessments. In particular, a coordinated approach to using novel monitoring methods to complement existing monitoring should be a priority at an operational level to address MSFD descriptors D5 (human-induced eutrophication), D7 (hydrographic conditions), and D8 (contaminants). A targeted pilot project could be used develop an initial OSPAR area wide indicator and establish guiding principles for OSPAR on how to best capitalize on data generated from novel monitoring methods, while ensuring interoperability, traceability, and quality assurance that follow common international standards.
Published under the auspices of the following ICES Steering Group or Committee