Minutes of the U.S. GLOBEC Scientific Steering Committee Meeting

Corvallis, OR --- April 5-6, 1995

The meeting began at 0840. Bob Beardsley was welcomed as a new SSC member. Present from the SSC were Beardsley, Costa, Hofmann, Hollowed, Mountain, Olson, Powell, Robinson, Smith and Strub. Taylor (NSF), Youngbluth (NSF), Peterson (NOAA), Scavia (NOAA, 5 April only) and Eakin (NOAA) attended from the agencies. Other attendees were Batchelder (U.S. GLOBEC), Goldberg (U.S. GLOBEC), Dan Bottom (Oregon Dept. Fish & Wildlife), Art Kendall (NOAA-PMEL), Warren Wooster (Univ. Washington and PICES), Tom Hayward (Scripps), Shin Iche Uye (sabbatical at OSU), Charlie Miller (OSU), Tim Cowles (OSU), Larry Small (OSU, 5 April only), Jack Barth (OSU), Pat Wheeler (OSU, 5 April only), and Bruce Menge (OSU). SSC members unable to attend were Bentzen, Gaines, Huntley, and Ortner.

Powell reviewed the agenda and noted that the major part of the meeting would be devoted to discussing scientific priorities in light of uncertain funding. Powell first brought the committee up to date with regard to GLOBEC International's effort to become part of the IGBP. Rothschild's presentation and formal request for GLOBEC International to become a program within IGBP (made last fall at IGBP's annual meeting) was viewed favorably. A joint IGBP-SCOR GLOBEC International committee has been formed to prepare a science plan and an official application for submission to IGBP before their next annual meeting (this fall). It was noted that acceptance of any program into IGBP is not a rapid process, and that it should be viewed as a two year proposition. Powell noted that funding from the NSF was stable (ca. $4.5M for FY95). The larger funding problem concerns NOAA's contribution. Powell noted that he had had several meetings with NOAA officials to attempt to resolve the rather bleak funding situation and that efforts in that direction would continue. He then asked the agency personnel to provide an overview of their funding situation.


Peterson reported for NOAA. Funds available for U.S. GLOBEC for 1995 are ca. $1.4M. This year the NOAA GLOBEC budget was cut from $1.8M to $1.4M, but the actual amount that GLOBEC will receive is unknown due to potential NOAA rescissions currently under consideration by the House and Senate. The Office of Global Programs (OGP) was recommended for a $7M reduction for FY95 in both House and Senate rescission bills. Moreover, the NOAA Coastal Ocean Program (COP), which was being counted on to pick up some of the budget reductions from OGP for FY95 is itself facing either a $5M (House) or zero (Senate) reduction for FY95. Peterson also pointed out that OGP may not fund U.S. GLOBEC beyond FY95. This means that U.S. GLOBEC may need to plan future years without counting on any NOAA money, and that may mean facing the possibility of having no NOAA investigators involved in the program. Peterson and others in NOAA are attempting to have COP become the major funding agency within NOAA for GLOBEC. Peterson asked Scavia (director of the COP) to provide an overview of recent activities in COP and OGP of relevance to U.S. GLOBEC and NOAA funding.

Scavia began his presentation by noting that the NOAA is attempting to transfer the point for GLOBEC from OGP to COP for future years. He noted that the COP has been funding fisheries oceanography programs (which look very "GLOBECish") for the past three years, and that GLOBEC would be well suited to COP and vice versa. Moreover, it appears to be the only logical home for GLOBEC within NOAA given the declining interest of OGP in funding an ecosystem-oriented program. Already, in the Georges Bank arena, there is coordination of COP and U.S. GLOBEC, since some of the fish predation work (PI is Mike Fogarty) is currently conducted under COP funding. Scavia informed us that COP was trying to make up the $800K shortfall in the GLOBEC FY95 budget (imposed by OGP). On a more personal note, Scavia expressed his strongest committment to support GLOBEC through the COP. COP has requested a $7M increase (with $3M targeted for fisheries oceanography programs on the east and west coasts) for FY96. However, with the current budget cutting that is occurring in Congress, the funding situation for future years looks bleak. When questioned, Scavia indicated that U.S. GLOBEC's current emphasis on climate and global change (as opposed to fisheries oceanography) would be compatible with a shift from OGP to COP.

Taylor, speaking for NSF, reiterated Powell's earlier comments that U.S. GLOBEC's funding from NSF was stable (and secure) at $4.5M for FY95. Taylor stated that future GLOBEC activities would probably include NOAA scientists, but that the involvement must begin by including the directors of the NOAA laboratories; e.g., by getting the directors behind GLOBEC and pushing for their scientists to participate. Mountain didn't see any way that NOAA scientists from the NEFC could participate in future GLOBEC activities without extramural funding. Mountain thought that the emphasis of the NEFC director was more on the social and economic implications of the groundfish collapse and closure, than on scientific research on the collapse and future recovery. Other NOAA scientists felt that in some NMFS labs, the directors encourage extramurally funded science, science (vs. politics) fares well, and the directors would support grass-root efforts within NMFS to support GLOBEC science. We discussed the merits of involving the regional fishing councils in the politics of funding (e.g., as lobbyists) these regional studies.


We returned to this subject several times during the two days of the meeting. All of those discussions are summarized in this section. The discussion of science priorities in U.S. GLOBEC was prefaced by short (20 min) presentations on the science that is being or could be done in each of the three regions (NW Atlantic, West Coast of U.S., Southern Ocean) for which U.S. GLOBEC has made plans. Mountain presented plans for future studies in the NW Atlantic, which would include continuation of broad-scale surveys, moorings, modelling, and the next process study on the sources, retention, and loss of water and organisms from Georges Bank. Plans presently call for that process study to occur in 1997. Mountain suggested that perhaps the region of study in the NW Atlantic might need to be enlarged, to include other retentive banks (e.g., Flemish Cap, SE Shoal, Browns Bank) in the system, to adequately address the source and loss issue. He noted that perhaps the expansion to other regions could be done in conjunction with Canada GLOBEC. The process studies of 1997 build on current stratification work, focus on dynamical processes that are known to vary, and provide an opportunity for U.S.-Canada cooperation.

Strub presented his view of GLOBEC science that should be initially pursued on the West Coast of the U.S. He reviewed the rationale for a Pacific GLOBEC study (economically important populations; strong natural signal [ENSO]; extensive existing monitoring [TOGA-TAO array, CalCOFI]), and candidate Pacific projects (a joint GLOBEC-PICES Carrying Capacity and Climate Change (CCCC) study of the Alaskan Gyre/North Pacific; Small Pelagic and Climate Change (SPACC) study of clupeoids in the world's oceans; a California Current program). He especially favors an intercomparison of Oregon-Washington (Region I) with Northern and Central California (Region II). Strub assumed a Pacific GLOBEC strategy that would start small, demonstrate success, and grow as appropriate. He assumed that a west coast program might begin with $1-2M/year of stable, long-term funding, and that future funding increases would be dependent upon success of the program. Modelling, retrospective data analysis and monitoring were argued as most likely to provide a high probability of success over a 3-year period with $1-2M of funding, and that such a level of effort would generate excitement from the academic community. Any future GLOBEC program in the Pacific must satisfy several criteria: it must be global in some sense (either through forcing or relevance to regional comparisons), must have a clear relation to climate variability, must focus on zooplankton, and must be clearly identifiable as belonging to U.S. GLOBEC. The latter excludes pumping up existing programs (such as CalCOFI) no matter how good they are, but it does not exclude collaboration so long as the contribution of U.S. GLOBEC is clear, and ideally, central. Moreover, there must be a clear measure of success. Strub used the recent Roemmich and McGowan (R&M) publication on climate warming and the zooplankton declines in the California Current to focus his presentation. He argued that perhaps GLOBEC might begin to develop real ecosystem models that can eventually be used in conjunction with process studies to test R&M's hypothesis that the zooplankton decline is due to bottom up control operating through food-chain trophodynamics. Strub argued that a U.S. GLOBEC investigation (beginning with modelling and retrospective analysis) of region I (Oregon-Wash.) and region II (Northern and Central California) best satisfies the criteria, provides an objective measure of success, and is most clearly identifiable as a U.S. GLOBEC program.

Lastly, Hofmann presented an overview of the Southern Ocean GLOBEC planning, its relevance to more general questions of climate and global change, and provided some specific examples. She described the long-term environmental changes that have occurred and their impacts on seabirds, esp. penguins of the Southern Ocean. Every 7-8 years the Southern Ocean has heavier than usual pack-ice, which is apparently related to a large region of fresh-water that advects around the continent (taking 7-8 years to complete a circuit). The freshwater anomaly was first observed in the 1940's. The extent of sea-ice impacts the relative abundance of chinstrap and Adelie penguins (the former forage only in open water; the latter are obligate inhabitants of the pack ice). She noted that the first step of a Southern Ocean program should be the development of a conceptual model to focus the investigations--a pattern that was very successful in organizing the Palmer Station LTER. She noted that the Southern Ocean GLOBEC program was being coordinated by GLOBEC International, that a secretariat office was in the process of being established in Bremerhaven, and that a science plan would be published shortly (within a month). Finally, she pointed out that the Office of Polar Programs has released an AO for modelling studies in the Southern Ocean (jointly for JGOFS and GLOBEC) as a first step toward a Southern Ocean GLOBEC program in the U.S. She noted that most (if not all) of the funding for a Southern Ocean GLOBEC would come from the NSF Office of Polar Programs--a separate money source from the Divison of Ocean Sciences. She noted the potential for GLOBEC to collaborate with the AMLR (Antarctic Marine Living Resources) program of NOAA in a U.S. GLOBEC Southern Ocean study.

Powell led off the general discussion by posing the following question to Mountain--the governor of Massachusetts wants the groundfish collapse on Georges Bank to be declared a natural disaster, U.S. GLOBEC has a research program in place, studying the area, what should U.S. GLOBEC do to help answer the questions of interest?

Mountain's reply was, assuming a 5 year moratorium on fishing on the Bank, that we need to watch the recovery of the groundfish resources while the fishery is closed so that we can eventually address how and why the recovery occurred (or didn't occur). A program like the currently proposed broad-scale survey would be the minimum program necessary to track the recovery of the groundfish. At least with such a program we would be able to document whatever happens to the stocks. Moreover, the COP effort on predator and elasmobranch stock structure should continue. Smith noted that if the NMFS scientists that have been participating with extramural funds in GLOBEC are cut in mid-program, it sends a bad signal to the directors of the NMFS labs for future extramural science activities of fisheries scientists in GLOBEC programs. It was also noted that the NMFS tends to be foreward looking only on the near-term, e.g., the emphasis is what is going to happen next year rather than what is going to happen during the next decade. Others suggested that GLOBEC's primary focus during a moratorium period on Georges Bank should be not only to measure recruitment, but to understand why it was good or bad in a given year. To accomplish this will require measuring expatriation, growth and survival rates. Costa expressed concern and discouragement over the lack of corporate responsibility at the NMFS with regard to GLOBEC research on Georges Bank. If we can't make a joint NSF-NOAA U.S. GLOBEC program work and successful on Georges Bank, where the scientific interests overlap greatly, how can a joint NSF-NOAA program work anywhere? Wooster expressed that the U.S. GLOBEC approach is what the NMFS should have been doing to manage and monitor stocks. There will be similar disasters (fishery collapses) in the future and we have to be prepared to provide explanations. Beardsley felt that the program needed to be more effective in getting scientific information out to the general public through intelligent articles in newspapers and other outlets. He noted the wide dissemination and publicity that resulted from an article in the Quincy Patriot Ledger, where a writer accompanied the Georges Bank scientists on a cruise last year.

Powell offered hypothetical low, medium, and high budget scenarios for U.S. GLOBEC for FY95-97 as an item for discussion. All numbers are in millions of $$$.

LOW Year
Agency 959697

Agency 959697

Agency 959697

Given the generally bleak funding prospects from NOAA, we discussed primarily the LOW funding scenario which entails a reduction in total U.S. GLOBEC funds from $5.9M in FY95 to $4.5M in FY96. It was felt that this scenario was 1) the most likely, and 2) the one that required the steering committee to provide strong direction to future GLOBEC activities. To aid this discussion, Powell offered two possibilities for the LOW scenario, one where the Georges Bank used all of the funds, and one where a Pacific program used $1M in FY96 to begin something (perhaps modelling), spreading the money out over two years (FY96-97). The scenarios are:

Scenario I. Begin some limited activities in the Pacific.
Region Georges Bank$5.9M
"Limp along" as is. Existing program is slightly underfunded
ca. $3.5M
1) (Reduced Broad-scale)
2) Moorings
3) (Reduced) large scale Modelling
ca. $4.5M
1) Broad-scale
2) Moorings
3) Large Scale Modeling
Begin Modeling and Retrospective
ca. $1.0M

Scenario II. Devote all existing resources to Georges Bank activities.
Region Georges Bank$5.9M
"Limp along" as is. Existing program is slightly underfunded
ca. $4.5M
1) Broad-scale
2) Moorings
3) Large scale Modelling
ca. $4.5M
1) Broad-scale
2) Moorings
3) Large Scale Modeling
4) (very reduced) Process study

Powell was asked what happens to the Pacific in FY97 under scenario I and the answer is that the $1.0M from FY96 would be spread over at least two years. Powell argued that modeling needs to be done in the North Atlantic on larger scales than is currently being done in order to link the U.S. GLOBEC results to the results of other nations studying cod as part of the Cod and Climate Change program. Robinson asked if we should consider even more drastic cuts to Georges Bank to get to a more balanced program with more Pacific in it? Peterson argued that the cut to either $3.5M or $4.5M was already a drastic cut from the $5.9M available for FY95. Robinson questioned whether the 5-7 years of broadscale surveys needed to be done contiguously, or could there be gaps? Mountain and Smith both felt that continuous sampling was necessary if we hope to understand the responses of the fish populations (which have multiyear lifespans), but perhaps is not necessary if the focus is solely on zooplankton dynamics. Smith pointed out that most years have poor fish recruitment; what you want to sample and monitor is the years where recruitment is high. You run the risk of missing the important year if sampling is not continuous.

Questions arose about the Southern Ocean money. Support for that program is principally from NSF Office of Polar Programs, not from NSF Ocean Sciences, so in some respects that is a different issue, and that what we need to concentrate on is the NW Atlantic and Pacific science. The issue of the Coastal Ocean Processes (CoOP) program (an NSF program) was raised. Strub indicated that no one knows where they will next do science. They meet in May 1995, when they will decide whether to continue the Duck, NC, work (mostly analysis), or begin work in the Great Lakes, or California Current.

Robinson reiterated his concerns that U.S. GLOBEC needs to consider both its short term objectives and long term goals in prioritizing its science. A short term objective is to deal with the current funding shortfall and to make the Georges Bank program successful. However, a longer term goal is to develop balanced Atlantic and Pacific programs. The unique aspects of U.S. GLOBEC are that it will investigate: 1) the dynamics of marine ecosystems, and 2) the dynamics of the ecosystem under climate change. We need to remember that U.S. GLOBEC is a program studying global (large-scale) phenomena. He was especially troubled by the apparent change in focus in GLOBEC from a climate change to a fisheries oceanography program that the reprogramming from the OGP to COP might entail. Robinson clearly stated his opposition to changing GLOBEC to a fisheries program. He is encouraged by the support that Scavia (COP) voiced for GLOBEC, but believes we need more. GLOBEC is an excellent climate change program, but is misunderstood by NOAA. He felt that our mission needed to be more clearly presented to NOAA in order to garner their support. Beardsley was present at a meeting between Merrill and Jim Baker (Administrator of NOAA) where GLOBEC came up; Baker and other senior NOAA people know GLOBEC's mission. Peterson pointed out that NOAA knows all about GLOBEC, but that they have other items with higher priority. Powell, Beardsley and others have met several times with senior NOAA officers about GLOBEC, but it hasn't had much impact on funding. Peterson felt that a large part of the problem is that Congress is now micromanaging NOAA and examining/cutting budgets. Powell stated that no matter what the outcome of the short term budget shortfall is, GLOBEC needs to rebuild bridges with NOAA. We cannot expect to fund an ecosystem research program in a region having a major fishery without the participation of NOAA and NMFS scientists.

The issue of whether the local states might assist in funding was raised. Robinson responded that direct support of research by Massachusetts was primarily restricted to nearshore coastal areas, and would probably not include the offshore bank regions.

The issue of selling the program to make it more attractive to the funding agencies was raised. Kendall felt that the economic collapse of the Georges Bank fishery represented a concrete example of why U.S. GLOBEC is important. He argued that the success of a research program is not the number of scientific papers that result, but rather what you can eventually say about the "natural disaster"--how it came about, how to remedy it, and how to avoid future recurrences. Hollowed argued that the scientific method of GLOBEC, which is to examine fisheries in an oceanographic context (fisheries oceanography), will eventually lead to much better predictions (and management strategies) than does the present method (stock-recruitment models). We could sell the program based on its ability to provide fisheries predictions and management from dynamical models rather than from statistical models. Powell argued that we all see that as an eventual long-term goal, but to promise it at this time is premature. We are a long way from being able to provide such predictive dynamical models.

Smith asked about economic and social connections to U.S. GLOBEC research. He noted that several in the GLOBEC community had gotten together at Scripps in November to begin to explore how to bring more economists and social scientists into the GLOBEC program. Powell responded that he had contacted several social/economic scientists at MIT and had begun to explore this issue--that it was a natural link, especially in light of the economic disaster that is occurring now due to the closure of the Georges Bank fishery. Powell also noted that his and others reading of the new Republican Congress is that social issues of science do not have the emphasis that they did earlier. Hollowed briefly summarized some discussions that she took part in at two meetings (one on socio-economics in Seattle with NOAA; and one on Technology Transfer in San Diego). The Seattle meeting included climatologists, salmon researchers and water resources scientists and focussed on how climatological models and analyses could be used to provide integrated assessments of fisheries (esp. salmon) resources. The San Diego meeting focussed on facilitating the transfer of technology from research to commercial interests by making it faster, cheaper and better (esp. for use in the coastal ocean).

The discussion turned to the timing of AO releases for future work on either the west coast or Georges Bank. Discussion touched a number of topics including whether or not we should diversify the program into the Pacific at this time. The consensus of the group was best summarized by Costa who felt that "It is better to do one thing well [Georges Bank] than to run two crippled programs". There were some however, including Hayward, who felt that "You might want to keep the camel's nose in the tent", i.e., begin a program presence on the west coast, especially in light of the publicity generated by the Roemmich and McGowan [Climatic Warming and the Decline of Zooplankton in the California Current; Science, 267, 1324-1326. 1995] article. Haywards sentiment's were echoed by Strub; however, even Strub (a strong proponent of a Pacific effort) felt that we could not justify a west coast program at this time if it reduced the chances of a successful GLOBEC Georges Bank program. Strub and others argued that GLOBEC needs some successes and especially will be asked what happened on Georges Bank relative to the stocks of the ground fish. Moreover, the PI's in the program need to have their commitments honored and can't be subject to discontinuous, intermittent funding. Beardsley felt that a delay of the second process study on Georges Bank from FY97 to FY98 would not be fatal to the program, and that it would in fact provide extra time for analysis and synthesis; however, the logistical problems were unclear. Those interested in a Pacific GLOBEC program argued that the second process study should go forward as proposed for FY97 if possible. They do not want the precedent established for starting and stopping projects based on SSC or agency politics. It was decided that an AO should be released during summer 1995 for proposals involved in the second Georges Bank field process study, and that if released at that time, proposals would be due ca. 1 February 1996.

Strub went further to suggest a longer-term scenario whereby the Georges Bank component would be funded under the low scenario (i.e., $4.5M from NSF) for FY96 and FY97, but that any new NSF funds (beyond the base $4.5M) that come to GLOBEC should go to broadening the program into the Pacific/California Current. Note that this assumes that $4.5M is sufficient to conduct relevant and exciting science on Georges Bank and expect success. That this expectation might be met was not disputed by those present. Moreover, he even suggested that any new NOAA money could be split (depending on attached strings; e.g., earmarking) between the Georges Bank and the CCCC (subarctic Pacific) program. To summarize, 1) the broad-scale survey work on Georges Bank is the number one priority; 2) we should spend $4.5M wisely on Georges Bank; and 3) any extra NSF funds (beyond the $4.5M base) should go to support west coast studies, perhaps initially modeling and retrospective analysis (depending on the amount available). Finally, Miller noted that to achieve the balance and broadening of the program that GLOBEC desires it is crucial that the program "find" $0.5-1.0M ASAP to begin preliminary (modeling, other) Pacific studies. Costa and others agreed that the California Current study needs to start as soon as possible (using NSF funds only), perhaps in conjunction with a CoOP program, so long as it does not jeapordize the chances for the Georges Bank program to have successes.

We briefly discussed the nature of an AO for west coast modelling, whether it should focus on the California Current System or be more basin scale, if funds became available. The discussion was diffuse and will need to be revisited when funds become available to support a west coast AO.

Finally, it was agreed that the U.S. GLOBEC office would prepare a one-page summary of these Science Prioritization discussions and make them available on the U.S. GLOBEC Web server.

SCIENCE TALK -- Southern Ocean Modeling

Mark Abbott described the discussions that took place at a meeting on Southern Ocean modeling. The workshop began with a review of the current status of understanding of S.O. modeling and a review of the scientific plans of JGOFS and GLOBEC in the Southern Ocean. The planned programs in the Southern Ocean of JGOFS and GLOBEC provide a unique opportunity to combine field research with model development in the Southern Ocean. He reviewed JGOFS objectives only, assuming that all present were aware of GLOBEC's objectives. JGOFS seeks a mechanistic understanding of the relation between carbon flux and climate change. The Southern Ocean is of interest because it is 1) a high nutrient low chlorophyll (HNLC) region; 2) a site of water mass formation; 3) sensitive to climate change; and 4) unknown whether it is a source or sink of carbon dioxide. Physical processes (including large-scale dynamical processes and shelf circulation) were briefly described. Issues of biological relevance include what limits primary production (light, iron, Si/N relations); grazing (difficult to measure; importance of microbial loop unclear); and vertical flux. Key questions about physical and biogeochemical shortcomings in existing models of the S.O. region, including why model derived transports through Drake passage greatly exceed observations; the relative roles of thermodynamic and wind forcing on the shelf; the interaction between ocean physics and the foodweb; the dynamics of ice ecosystems; and others, were briefly presented. Difficulties with present models include the narrow range of models available, limitations of existing model with regard to boundary/initial conditions, interpretations, topographic treatment, resolution and forcing; and observational difficulties (lack of time-series data) which make validation difficult. Whether the appropriate variables are being measured and/or modeled (rates vs. states), model simplications and coupling biological components with physical/atmospheric components, and data assimilation issues which will require closer collaboration of biologists and modelers were discussed extensively at the meeting. Based on the recommendations of the meeting, JGOFS revised their original Southern Ocean field program from five to two study sites (Polar Front near 170 deg. W, and the Ross Sea). Recommendations from the workshop were to 1) increase the accessibility of models to observationists; 2) improve Southern Ocean modeling capabilites in advance of field studies; 3) improve observation capabilities, especially to quantify error covariances and collect biological data on size and functional groups [note this entails a trade-off between high tech-high cost and low tech-low cost simple systems that provide more observations (spatially and perhaps temporally)); and, 4) establish a regular program for developing coupled physical/biogeochemical models.


Hofmann provided an overview of the progress of GLOBEC International's planning for a Southern Ocean program. Victor Smetacek has completed a GLOBEC S.O. Implementation Plan that is being printed and distributed within the next month. Research will be conducted in three regions; the U.S. component will be located on the Antarctic Peninsula. Other regions of the Southern Ocean will be focussed on by other countries. A field program might begin as early as 1998. A structure for management of the GLOBEC S.O. program is in the process of being established. It will include a secretariat to be based in Bremerhaven, Germany, a data management task team, and a modeling working group. A GLOBEC International S.O. Executive Committee will be formed to provide oversight and will report to the full GLOBEC International SSC. Hofmann also pointed out that an AO has been released for Southern Ocean modeling proposals which includes both GLOBEC and JGOFS components.


Mountain provided a brief update on Georges Bank activities of this year. There are 300-340 days of ship research scheduled for calendar year 1995. The cruises are proceeding with few hitches. Miller noted that the results from the cruises through March reveal that the population dynamics of Calanus finmarchicus are surprising. Calanus on last November's cruise were throughout the water column and feeding (not all at depth as expected). Moreover, the seasonal development of Calanus appears to be a full month ahead of the classically depicted situation for the NW Atlantic. By late-March a complete generation had been finished. Perhaps, the generally mild winter of 94-95 is in some way responsible for the accelerated schedule.

The Georges Bank data management system is up. Data are being entered into it. Cruise reports have been appearing rapidly following the conclusion of each cruise, and are also being placed on the Georges Bank Web Server. All three Georges Bank investigators (Mountain, Miller, Beardsley) present credited the rapid dissemination of cruise results to taskmaster Peter Wiebe.


Wooster presented a brief history of the PICES (North Pacific Marine Organization) program. Hollowed then provided details of a meeting being sponsored by U.S. GLOBEC in mid-April 1995 to explore GLOBEC Science issues in the North Pacific.

The PICES program is modeled after the ICES (International Council for the Exploration of the Seas) program which is a successful organization of 18 member countries. Unlike the ICES program which is highly focussed on stock assessment and fisheries management, the PICES program opted for broader studies focussing on the marine ecosystems north of 30 deg in the North Pacific (including adjacent seas). Currently there are 6 member countries: Canada, Japan, South Korea, China, U.S. and Russia. A number of working groups were organized and most have produced science plans as appropriate. PICES and GLOBEC International agreed in 1993 to jointly organize an international science program on Climate Change and Carrying Capacity (CCCC). A working group, chaired by Brent Hargreaves, produced a PICES CCCC science plan that was accepted by PICES at their 1994 annual meeting. The science plan highlights activities that will occur at two spatial scales: basin scale studies of plankton productivity, carrying capacity of higher trophic levels and its relation to climate variability; and, regional-scale, ecosystem studies of ocean climate variation and biological responses in the coastal margins of the Pacific Rim. U.S. GLOBEC's proposed California Current studies fall within the latter activity. The design and implementation of specific science activities along the Pacific margins within the CCCC program are the responsibility of the participating nations. Hollowed's presentation focussed on U.S. GLOBEC's participation in the former. Studies of the western and eastern subarctic basins (basin wide studies) should be designed and coordinated as international studies to maximize the use of ship resources. Research activities include data management, retrospective analysis, long-term observations, process studies, and modeling.

Hollowed showed the agenda for a meeting to be held in Seattle on April 19-20 to identify and discuss key scientific issues relevant to the CCCC program from the U.S. perspective (in other words, to examine how the U.S. might participate in the CCCC program). In the discussion that followed, Kendall suggested that a key contribution of U.S. GLOBEC to studies in the subarctic Pacific could take the form of expanding or augmenting ongoing programs like FOCI or OCCP (Ocean Carrying Capacity Program) to larger scales than is currently being investigated. The former focusses on pollock populations and how their recruitment and life cycle is influenced by the physical and biological environment. The latter is an examination of salmon production along the Alaskan Coastal Current between Dixon Entrance and Kodiak Island. Finally, we discussed the time-frame for the production of a workshop report from the Seattle meeting. Hollowed hopes to have a first draft available before a late-May meeting of the PICES CCCC leadership. Thus, she anticipates distributing a draft to the GLOBEC SSC prior to the October meeting. The document will be discussed at the October meeting. Hollowed would like immediate feedback at that time so that she can present a slightly modified version to the PICES community at their annual meeting in late October 1995.

DAY TWO (Thursday, 6 April 1995)


Powell began this day by pointing out that Ortner's Technology Committee had produced specific recommendations and modifications to their Terms of Reference, and specifically recognized that given the generally difficult funding situation for U.S. GLOBEC, a technology specific RFP can not be justified at this time. A one page summary of the Technology Committee discussions and recommendations was included in the briefing book.

Batchelder noted that a final report of a workshop on Secondary Production was in the briefing book. Comments on the report will be accepted until May 5, after which the document will be printed and distributed. During the discussion, Robinson noted that GLOBEC International was planning a modelling workshop to be held in France in mid-July 1995, and that an announcement should appear shortly.

Powell noted that a copy of the U.S. GLOBEC Long-Range plan was distributed to the committee at the meeting and that the plan was going to the printer next week.

A final report of a workshop on Open Ocean Population Dynamics was included in the briefing book. Batchelder commented that it differed only slightly from a version that was included in the briefing book at the last SSC meeting. There was no specific discussion of this document. Comments on the document will be accepted until May 5, after which the report will be printed and distributed.


The presentation was made by Tom Hayward. CalCOFI is a cooperative program of the California Department of Fish and Game, the National Marine Fisheries Service, and the Marine Life Research Group at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography of the University of California. It has a total budget of ca. $40K to produce its report series and hold its annual meeting. Its goal is to describe and understand the causes of fluctuations in abundance of commercially important species in the waters off California. Each of the agencies has different emphasis and takes primary responsibility for different facets of the research: CDF&G is primarily interested in fisheries statistics and fisheries management; NMFS takes primary responsibility for plankton sampling and population studies of fish; SIO studies the physical oceanography and plankton. The primary focus of the CalCOFI studies is the time-series monitoring cruises that are conducted quarterly and have been conducted since ca. 1950. In addition there are ad hoc studies, and cooperative programs done on the time-series cruises. Hayward described the standard observations made during the survey cruises.

Hayward noted that many significant findings have resulted from the observations made on the time-series surveys. Most recently is Roemmich and McGowan's analysis indicating a long-term decline in the biomass of zooplankton in the Southern California Bight, perhaps as a result of deepening of the thermocline and a reduction in nutrients and primary productivity.

Hayward presented CalCOFI's wish list for future research, particularly items that might be of strong interest to U.S. GLOBEC also. The list includes 1) better resolution of a the annual cycle (more frequent sampling), 2) better resolution of mesoscale structure, 3) more retrospective data analysis, 4) more analysis of dynamics of individual species (as opposed to biomass), and 5) development of nested biological-physical models. Other needs, of less direct relevance to U.S. GLOBEC, are better phytoplankton sampling, sampling of zooplankton with a finer mesh net, and sampling of the coastal area north of Point Conception. CalCOFI resources of potential interest to U.S. GLOBEC are the historical dataset that has been generated, cooperative sampling on time-series and process cruises, and the CalCOFI group which provides excellent, inexpensive technical resources for making many types of routine observations. Potential future collaborations with GLOBEC might include developing community models, moorings, development of new sensors, maintenance and interpretation of the time-series samples, process work, especially in Southern California on an ad hoc basis, and retrospective data analysis.

SCIENCE TALK--GLOBEC and Marine Mammals

Costa spoke of technological advancements that have made tracking and understanding the behavior of marine mammals much more feasible. They include using declassified Navy sensors to track whale movements and migrations, and smart tracking devices that employ ARGOS or other navigation tools. Some of the tags are capable of measuring oceanographic conditions (e.g., depth, temperature) and/or physiological status (e.g., heart rate) of the organism. Seabirds and marine mammals are dependent upon oceanographic processes to concentrate food. In some marine mammals, pup survival and growth are closely related to nearby food/ocean conditions. Case studies on 1) northern fur seals in the Pribilofs, 2) Antarctic fur seals, and 3) California Sea Lions were presented. Northern fur seals forage to different depths depending on the types of food available--they dive to greater depths and feed on benthic species (pollock and flatfish) when they forage over the shelf, but feed at more shallow depths on squid when they forage over deeper waters. Antarctic fur seals feed almost exclusively on euphausiids (krill) and feed almost constantly at maximum effort. Adult females altered foraging trip duration (longer trips when less food is available), but maintained a nearly constant rate of mass increase per trip (independent of food availability). Pups in years where food is less abundant received fewer feeding visits from their mothers, had slower growth rates and poorer survival. Costa noted that fur seal breeding sites everywhere (Benguela, Calif. Current, Bering Sea, New Zealand, Galapagos, Peru-Chile, and Uruguay) are restricted to regions that are near upwelling or other highly productive regions.


Peterson noted that as a result of all the fiscal uncertainties in NOAA, and especially in the new Congress, the announcement of opportunity to begin initial U.S. GLOBEC studies on the west coast will not be released as planned. See notes above on science prioritization.

Batchelder noted that nothing significant had progressed on Data Management since the October 1994 meeting. He relayed to the committee a request from NODC for the names of 1 or more scientists to participate in an international meeting on the management of biological oceanographic data. After some discussion it was agreed to ask Peter Wiebe, who is most closely involved in the data management effort on Georges Bank, if he would attend to represent U.S. GLOBEC's interests and the types of data that this program is generating. [NOTE: Wiebe was contacted and agreed to participate if his cruise schedule permits. Wiebe's name was given to Syd Levitus, who is organizing this meeting for the NODC.]

Further discussion of the TOR of the U.S. GLOBEC subcommittees was deferred till the next meeting.

The next steering committee meeting will be October 5-6, 1995 and is tentatively scheduled to be held in Washington, DC. It was also proposed that the April 1996 meeting be held at the University of Rhode Island, but selection of a date and location for this meeting was not concluded due to several of the SSC being absent. The details of this meeting will be discussed by e-mail during the next several months.


Quote of the Meeting:

"We [U.S. GLOBEC] are misunderstood by NOAA." -- Allan Robinson

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