U.S. GLOBEC Scientific Steering Committee Meeting

National Academy of Sciences

J. Eric Jonsson Conference Center

Woods Hole, Massachusetts

6-7 November 2003

Thursday, November 6th

Members in attendance were Bob Beardsley (WHOI), Nick Bond (NOAA), Mike Dagg (LUMC), Kendra Daly (USF), Dale Haidvogel (Rutgers), Eileen Hofmann (ODU), Mark Ohman (Scripps), Zack Powell (UC Berkeley), Ted Strub (OSU), Francisco Werner (UNC), and Peter Wiebe (WHOI).

Guests in attendance included Madeline Gazzale (Rutgers), Robert Groman (WHOI), Linda Lagle (WHOI), David Robertson (Rutgers), Phil Taylor (NSF), Elizabeth Turner (NOAA), and Cyndy Tynan (WHOI).

Haidvogel, Chairperson of the SSC, called the meeting to order at 0830 hours.  Following the welcome and introductions, a brief overview of the meeting agenda was presented.  Issues included Program Reviews, Science Talk, Agency Reports and SSC Membership.


Eileen Hoffman provided an overview of the Southern Ocean GLOBEC Program.  She stated that the Southern Ocean was chosen because of its strong linkage to climate and close coupling between trophic levels.  The primary object of Southern Ocean GLOBEC is to understand physical and biological factors that contributed to enhanced Krill growth, reproduction, recruitment and survivorship throughout the year. The focus of this research also includes the predators and competitors of Antarctic krill, such as seal, penguins, whales, fish, seabirds and other zooplankton.

The Southern Ocean GLOBEC Program was originally part of the International GLOBEC Program focusing on over-winter strategies for Antarctic Krill.  Field Programs were held by Australia, Germany, United States, UK and Korea.  Activities for Southern Ocean GLOBEC included three current mooring deployment cruises and eight process and survey cruises over a two-year period for the US Field Program.

Eileen noted that Marguerite Bay was selected because historical data shows that it has dependable supply of krill, dependable sea ice in winter and  is where the predators go for over-wintering in the Antarctic.   An important note was that the Mooring measurements made in Marguerite Bay are the first long-term current measurements ever made in Antarctic coastal waters.

Eight Passive Acoustic Moorings were deployed over a two-year period to record long-term records of cetacean.  These acoustics pick up whale calls or other environmental noises.  Bottom intrusions of circumpolar deep water were observed over the continental shelf during all survey cruises.  Introduction of this warmer salt, nutrient-rich water is a primary control on physical and biological processes in the region.  It allows for thinner ice or no ice allowing easier access for penguins. Sea ice was also a large component of the process ships.  In this part of the Antarctic, it was found that ice is built by sinking and having sea water come on top and then freezing.  Penguin satellite tagging programs provided some evidence that the penguins that leave the northern part of the peninsula are going into Marguerite Bay to over-winter and return to the colony the next year.  Penguins are involved with diet switching in the winter.  The availability of krill is less, therefore penguins eat more fish.

Crabeater seals satellite data showed movement in the winter up and down peninsula. But, they are staying in the areas where the circumpolar deep water is keeping the ice to a minimum and there is more krill and a dependable food supply.  The satellite tagging program, a very good technique for putting seals to sleep and then waking them up with very little damage was developed.   A paper on this technique has been published in the marine mammal literature.  This technique is expected to become the industry standard.

The Ocean Sciences Meeting in Portland, OR in January of 2004 will have a Special Session for GLOBEC.  There will be eight oral and three poster sessions. A Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research open science meeting in Germany in July 2004 will also have a GLOBEC Special Session.  The Southern Ocean GLOBEC Deep Sea Special Volume publication date is set for early 2004.

The follow-on program, ICCED -- Integrated Analysis of Circumpolar Climate Interactions in Ecosystem Dynamics in the Southern Oceans -- is being put forward as a joint initiative.


Peter Wiebe provided a timeline for the US GLOBEC Northwest Atlantic Georges Bank Program from 1992 through 2004.  This timeline included information on cruises, funding, meetings, workshops and proposal due dates.  He then provided an update of the first year of synthesis activity.  He spoke about the funded programs at Georges Bank for Phase IV Synthesis.  The first program was The Physical Oceanography of Georges Bank and Its Impact on Biology.  The three primary objectives of this program are:

1.      To understand the physical dynamics and interactions of several specific processes including the seasonal evolution of stratification on the Bank, the crucial flow field over the Northeast Peak, and the cross-frontal exchange within the tidal-mixing and northern flank fronts that are thought to play critical roles in zooplankton and fish recruitment.

2.      To combine these observationally-based process synthesis studies into model-based studies to provide our best descriptions of the Bank’s physical environment and its variability on time scales from minutes to monthly to seasonal for the GLOBEC field years.

3.      To provide other Phase IV investigators with as complete a description and understanding of the basis physical processes affecting their observations as possible.

The progress to date shows that the onset of thermal stratification over the southern flank of Georges Bank between February and August is strongly controlled by the local surface heat flux, with horizontal advection playing a minor role.  The salinity stratification is strongly controlled by upstream advection, with local precipitation playing a minor but measurable role.  Occasional on-bank intrusions of the shelf-slope front can carry relatively warm and salty frontal and slope water on the southern bank, but these intrusions appear to have little effect on the stratification and water properties after the intrusions have left.  Occasional Scotian Shelf cross-overs can carry relatively cold and fresh water onto the eastern end of Georges Bank which are advect towards the Southwest over the outer shelf and upper slope.

It was also noted that the dominant currents on the mid and shallower southern flank of Georges Bank are the semidiumal tidal currents.  These tidal currents generate a highly turbulent bottom boundary layer with properties that are reasonably simulated in nearly homogeneous conditions with present vertical turbulence closure parameterizations used in circulation models.

The Scotian shelf water on southern Georges Bank was said to be a source of zooplankton.  One major finding from the field measurement and the analysis of satellite imagery is the regularity of near-surface “cross-overs” between spawning areas on Browns Bank and on the Northeast Peak (NEP) of Georges Bank during the winter/spring period.  Based on surface drifter measurements in 1999, roughly 15-20% of planktonic organisms in the surface layers of Browns Bank may be advected to the shallow regions of the NEP, spending 2-26 days in transit and residing on the NEP for three to four weeks.

In terms of progress for this project, the list of items that is being held up now is a new paradigm for exchange between Browns and Georges Bank, with the first detailed descriptions of surface forcing and ocean response, tidal boundary layer, Scotian Shelf cross-over events and Slope Water intrusions and their apparent lack of lasting impact on the bank temperature and salinity fields on Georges Bank.  There was also continued development of a new Finite-Volume Coastal Ocean Circulation Model which has wide application in GLOBEC and other physical and coupled biophysical model studies.

The next program he spoke about was Tidal Front Mixing and Exchange on Georges Bank: Controls on the Production of Phytoplankton, Zooplankton and Larval Fishes.  The overall objective of this program is to understand the processes within the tidally mixed front (TMF) that sustain the biological productivity of Georges Bank and the success of the target species which include cod and haddock.  The TMF is central to the productivity of Georges Bank through the process of nutrient injection in the north and retention of larvae on the south flank.  He noted that this project is a mix of data analysis and modeling activities, including dye dispersion data and simple shear dispersion models which are used to understand the link between cross-bank flow and vertical mixing.  Also, a finite-volume coastal ocean model (FVCOM) is used to calculate the temporal and spatial structure of nutrient flux into the TMF, contrasting northern and southern flank inputs. The following hypotheses were tested: 

1)      Nutrient injections in the north are advected around the crest of the bank and lead to a plume of elevated phytoplankton and zooplankton production.

2)      The plume enriches the area of larval entrainment on the south flank and production in the plume can be altered by the nutrient content of source waters in the Northeast Channel of the Gulf of Maine.

3)      These changes will affect the feeding environment of larval cod and haddock.

Models incorporating the measured 3-D flow and turbulence fields are used to examine spatial patterns of larval retention and define the kinds of environmental transitions that larvae experience during this process.

The third program he spoke about was Zooplankton Population Dynamics on Georges Bank: Model and Data Synthesis.  The goal of this project is to gain a mechanistic understanding of the influences of climate variation on the population dynamics and production of target zooplankton species on Georges Bank through its effects on advective transport, temperature, food availability, and predator fields. Physical models are forced with measured daily, inter-annually variable data, and coupled to biological models synthesizing the observations collected during the GLOBEC program.  Once again, FVCOM is being used to interpret data with the major focus is on:

1)      Wind control of the advective supply of the target zooplankton species to Georges Bank during January-April;

2)      Interannual and/or event-level variations in the advective flux of Calanus finmarchicus to Gulf of Maine basin diapausing populations during June-April;

3)      The influence of stratification on the planktonic ecosystem, and how this affects the population dynamics of the target zooplankton species through food and predation.

4)      Mechanistic insight into the factors determining production of copepod prey for larval cod and haddock on the Bank.

His presentation included slides which depicted the surface circulation and stratification from the FVCOM model forced by spatially varying satellite winds for the month of April.  Mesoscale meteorological model MM5 is used to create high resolution forecasts of the surface heat and momentum fluxes from the atmosphere over the Gulf of Maine. Model runs are forced both by the highly resolved meteorological fluxes from MM5 and by the assimilation of sea-surface temperature data and ocean current meter data.  Climatological runs for all months of the year have been made using the mean hydrography from all available data in the Gulf of Maine, Scotian Shelf, and Mid-Atlantic Blight.

FVCOM has been used to examine the relative importance of wind forcing, Scotian Shelf inflows, and other boundary conditions to the strength of the currents in the Gulf of Maine, and the variability of Lagrangian pathways in the Gulf of Maine and from the Gulf to Georges Bank. It was strongly noted that the variability of the inflows from the Scotian Shelf is more important than the variability in the winds in determining the year to year changes in flow along isobaths, and thus the connection between the Gulf of Maine and Georges Bank.

The initial and final concentrations of 250,000 Lagrangian particles released at 10m depth over Wilkinson Basin during a climatological January and left to advect away over 60 days.  This approximates the transport of Calanus, surfaced from diapause, to Georges Bank. It showed the final location of the particles after 60 days of mean wind-stress as well as the mean final particle concentration from runs with real alongshore winds from 1989 to 2000. It was noted that there is a difference in the mean position of particles driven by real winds, as opposed to the position of particles driven by mean winds.

Other work on this project includes:

1) Development of continuously size-structured models, which more accurately model the growth of organisms than models with discrete size structures.

2) Development of five-year monthly means (climatologies) and monthly means for each year of broad-scale survey zooplankton data for all of the major taxa.

3) Development of individual-based models for the target copepod species using a development rate that is based on age-within-stage, which are best able to represent experimental data.

4) Investigation of how different feeding behaviors affected copepod population dynamics, when they responded to phytoplankton blooms. Found that copepod population growth was sensitive to prey preference and selection; different foraging strategies introduced a four-fold variation into the population size.

The fourth program Peter commented on was the Patterns of Energy Flow and Utilization on Georges Bank.  The overall objective of this research is to provide a broad ecosystem context for interpretation of the population dynamics of the Georges Bank GLOBEC target species. This work is model- and biology-based.  The project will synthesize key aspects of production and energy flow, will examine several alternate model outcomes of GLOBEC and GLOBEC-related studies, and will explicitly consider factors not addressed in earlier models of this system, including the microbial food web, consideration of new and recycled primary production, spatial heterogeneity of primary and secondary production on Georges Bank, changes in biomass and production at higher trophic levels, and the effects of environmental forcing on production processes.

Previous estimates of production at all trophic levels for the Georges Bank system have been assembled as a starting point for the development of a refined energy budget.A slide depicting the food web was shown.  Also noted was the definition of the four temporal domains that are to be modeled.  This includes the 1960’s to 1990’s and the physical regime, fishery regime, and fish community structure.   

Work to date has included:

1)      construction of digitized seasonal tidal mixing front (TMF) locations from long-term monthly mean TMF probability density function (PDF) maps: Results showed the seasonal change in the position of the TMF, located over deeper depths during the colder months, largely merging with the shelf slope front (SSF) during winter, and then moving steadily on-Bank during the warmer months when Bank-wide stratification is present.

2)      development and testing of an inverse model for the microbial loop on Georges Bank: This linear model provides a budget for fluxes from primary production to export as mesozooplankton and detritus.

3)      investigation of the dynamics of regime shifts in food webs on Georges Bank: The aim is to see whether simple models of food webs with top-down and bottom-up forcing can demonstrate responses at the time scales inferred from observations on Georges Bank and elsewhere.

4)      development of model structures that consider the production of juvenile and adult fish and the transfer rates between these components: Explicit consideration of the separation of recruitment processes and trophic interactions in these transfer mechanisms is made.

5)      development of a graphical model interface for the food web model that allows the user to specify model structures and transfer rates was discussed. When complete, this interface will allow the user to translate a graphical representation of the food web into a system of linear equations that can be input into MATLAB.

6)      microbial, nano- and microzooplankton biomass and rate data have been inventoried. Functional response curves are being developed that describe the feeding rates of C. finmarchicus copepod and naupliar stages as function of temperature, chlorophyll concentration, and microzooplankton standing stock.

7)      information on weights for each mesozooplankton taxon and copepod stage used to estimate biomass: Functional curves describing growth and reproductive rates of the dominant copepod taxa as function of temperature and chlorophyll are being developed. In situ growth rates are estimated from these relations and from broad-scale survey temperature and chlorophyll data.

8)      benthic biomass and production estimated from past studies on the Bank: A list of species to be included in the "invertebrate predator" category of the model has been identified and will be used to calculate abundance of invertebrate predator species for relevant time and spatial domains.  Identification of guild structures for the nekton, based on previous diet composition studies, is being used to define the model structure at these upper trophic levels.

Integration and Synthesis of Georges Bank Broad-Scale Survey Results is the fifth program to come out of Georges Bank.  The principal objective of this project is to utilize the very comprehensive U.S GLOBEC broad-scale data sets that now exist to address two overarching questions: What controls inter-annual variability in the abundance of the target species (cod and haddock larvae, Calanus finmarchicus, and Pseudocalanus spp) on Georges Bank (e.g., bottom-up or top-down biological processes, or physical advective processes)? And, how are these processes likely to be influenced by climate variability?

The work has really been focused on getting the data completed in two coordinated efforts:

1) Data completion and data management.

2) Data analysis, integration, and interpretation

            A. Hydrographic-biological Relationships

            B. Integration of Rate Processes and Broad-Scale-Distribution Data Sets

            C. Building climatology using objective mapping or kriging

            D. Modeling

A slide of the Georges Bank Broad-Scale Standard Grid was shown.  This mapping grid was designed in order to map the data that was received.  All data will be mapped to this grid and made available to the community.

Broad-scale egg samples for both cod and haddock have been processed to consider possible maternal influence on egg viability, assuming increased egg size may reflect better condition and overall viability. No indication was found that interannual variation in egg calculated mortality rates was related to variation in egg size. The eggs were also staged and seasonal egg mortality rates for both species were calculated for each year of sampling.  The mortality rates varied by a factor of two over the duration of the program.  Comparisons with time series of the local wind stress suggest that the variability in egg mortality was caused by variations in wind-driven off-bank transport during the periods of peak egg abundance.  A particle tracking model, using both the observed winds and the observed egg distributions, indicates a seasonal loss of eggs consistent with the calculated egg mortality rates.  Both the interannual variability in the winds and in the egg distributions appear important in determining the interannual variability in the egg mortality rates.

A 1 m2 MOCNESS (0.15 mm mesh) and a zooplankton pump (0.05 mm or  0.035 mm mesh) were used during the broad-scale surveys.  A comparison indicates that C1 and C2 of Calanus and all C1-C5 of Pseudocalanus were under sampled by the MOCNESS relative to the pump an average of 37%. Extrusion should not be a problem for most because the individual widths are greater than the 0.15 mm mesh used. Overestimation of the volume filtered relative to the actual volume filtered is the likely cause.

Reproductive rates and mortality rates of target zooplankton species: the reproductive rates of C. finmarchicus at broad-scale stations have been calculated for all broad-scale cruises using measurements of prosome length and chlorophyll a concentrations. A modification of the procedure for estimating C. finmarchicus egg production rates from the preserved broad-scale samples has been developed that explicitly accounts for food limitation effects on clutch size.

Peter then went on take the committee through some broad-scale patterns in the distribution of key species.  This showed monthly climatological distributions of Calanus finmarchicus C2 to C5 from the Broad-Scale Surveys were assimilated into a coupled physical-biological model to explore the physical and biological controls. Results show that the Wilkinson Basin and the Georges Basin provide important sources of C4 and C5 in spring and summer.

Bank-wide patterns of distribution and abundance of two species of Pseudocalanus, P. moultoni and P. newmani:

1)      Integrative data analysis, to compare patterns among all target species and any other taxa that are abundant and/or ecologically important;

2)      Application of numerical, coupled biological / physical models to the Pseudocalanus spp. distributional data to infer processes from the patterns;

3)      Synthesis of the patterns and processes of all species to examine the role of each species in the Georges Bank ecosystem.

The cross-frontal process distribution of Pseudocalanus during June 1999 is being objectively mapped and used for adjoint modeling of the dynamics of maintenance of the species on the Bank.

The 10-m2 MOCNESS data on the distribution and abundances of the major macrozooplankton and micronekton predators is being used:

1)      To examine the relationships between these biota and various environmental conditions, especially hydrography and Slope Water intrusions.

2)      To study the overall community structure within the Georges Bank macrozooplankton and micronekton using multivariate analyses.

3)      To integrate the distribution and abundance data with various rate process data derived from GLOBEC process cruises and the literature to generate broad-scale distributions of specific predation mortality rates for each target (prey) taxon.

Integration and synthesis of the nutrients and chlorophyll data was highlighted. Effort involves re-plotting and re-contouring the data sets on phytoplankton chlorophyll and nutrient distributions on Georges Bank.  Budgets are now being constructed, which include some of the organic nitrogen and carbon measures.

What’s Next for Georges Bank PIs? There will be a PI Meeting at Whispering Pines, November 18-20, 2003.  Forty-five+ investigators will attend and present 25 talks and 10 posters.  JGR Special Section was published at the end of 2003 with 16 papers.  AGU Ocean Science meeting with be held in January of 2004, the ASLO/TOS meeting in February 2004.  The AO Phase 4 (~1 April 2004; proposals due ~30 June). ICES/GLOBEC Symposium on the influence of climate change on North Atlantic fish stocks will be held from 11-14 May 2004 in Bergen.  PI Summer Meeting in July 2004 followed by the EU/NA Atlantic Basin-scale Workshop in Iceland. The ICES meeting will be held in Vigo, Spain in September 2004.


Ted Strub began his talk with a quote from Thomas Jefferson on observing climate change.  “Years are requisite for this, steady attention to the thermometer, to the plants growing there, the times of their leafing and flowering, its animal inhabitants, beasts, birds, reptiles, and insects; its prevalent winds, quantities of rain and snow, temperature of fountains, and other indexes of climate.  We want this indeed for all the States, and the work should be repeated once or twice in a century, to show the effect of clearing and culture towards changes of climate.”

The Northeast Pacific Program is now in the main phase. There have been two intense observing projects in both the CCS and the GOA. We have one more year of LTOP in the GOA.   We have had seven or eight years of retrospective studies (1997 – 2004).  The modeling and LTOP also started back then.  In this period we had one of the strongest El Nińo, La Nińa and possibly a Regime Shift. In Oregon we had a subarctic intrusion (large-scale circulation change).  Also completed were intensive Process/Mesoscale Studies, as well as programmatic events and special sessions and volumes.

Ted stated that in the Northeast Pacific they started with the underlying hypothesis/assumption: energetic variability in the NEP has a rich spectrum of scales (time and space).  The past seven years have affirmed this. The three primary hypotheses:

1)      The CCS and GOA alternate out-of-phase in terms of physics and biology on multiple trophic levels.

2)      Mesoscale circulation strongly affects/controls biological productivity (at multiple trophic levels). 

3)      Mortality of juvenile salmon during their first period in the coastal ocean strongly affects/controls their year-class population sizes.

Outreach for CCS/GOA will include cruises; new CIOSS initiatives, using GLOBEC and other materials.

Ted then went on to list the programmatic events, special sessions and volumes.  In November of 2002 the SI/Executive Committee meeting was held in Covallis.  Another SI/EC meeting was held in January 2002 in Anchorage. A GLOBEC, GEM, NPRB, … report is on the NEP web site. In January of 2003 there were the Ocean Sciences Sessions: GLOBEC, REGIME, CCS/CANARY, CoOP, and the SI/EC meeting both were held in Portland.  In 2004 there is the PICES, HI, 1.5 day, Synthesis of N. Pacific (GLOBEC & GLOBEC-LIKE.)  In 2006there is PICES, HI, 4 day, Synthesis of N. Pacific (GLOBEC & GLOBEC-LIKE.)    Special volumes included 2001/2002 – Progress in Oceanography Special Volume:   PICES, GLOBEC, EL NINO, 2003 – GRL Special Section (~9 papers on the Subarctic Intrusion) and 2004 – DSRII: ~14 papers under review.

He then showed slides showing that CCS and GOA vary out-of-phase.  These slides focused on the Northeast Pacific Climate Variations: Large Scale Patterns and Mechanisms.   One showed the low level wind and implied geostrophic current anomalies that are common during NEP climate events.  Warm events form cyclonic wind anomalies over most of NEP which lead to anomalously strong (weak) AC (CCS) flows.  Warm event Ţ negative SSTAs along west coast of North America.  Cool events, when there are anticyclonic wind anomalies over most of NEP lead to anomalously weak (strong) AC (CCS) flows.  Cool event Ţ negative SSTAs along west coast of North America.  These wind anomalies represent anomalies in both the intensity and location of the Aleutian Low and North Pacific High.  Combination of cyclonic wind anomaly in northern NEP and anticyclonic wind anomaly in southern NEP leads to positive SSTAs in coastal GoA and negative SSTAs in CCS, and to anomalously strong flows in NPC, AC and CCS. Example:  winter 2001-2002 wind anomalies that contributed to positive SSTAs in coastal GoA, negative SSTAs in he CCS, and subarctic water mass and S-ward flow anomalies in CCS.  Ted reinforced this hypothesis with data collected from the period from January 20, 2002 to February 2, 2002 which showed that anomalies of wind can in fact cause a change in temperature of a half degree.  In the seasonal time period it can cause a thin rivet of warm water around the coast. He pointed out that we have in fact moved back into a cooler regime.  

Ted then showed slides of fish in the water in August 2000 compared to July 2002.  The temperature and salinity of the water can contribute to this.  Mortality of juvenile salmon during their first period in the coastal ocean strongly affects/controls their year-class population sizes.  Salmon numbers have not dropped in the GOA so far, while salmon survival has increased in the PNW. On the scales of at least interannual variability the co-variability is not necessarily out-of-phase.  What does this tell us?  Differences in life history: Range of spawning ages is different. Although it is believed that this can not explain the difference in response to environmental changes. GLOBEC should be looking at survival during the ocean phase.

Ted explained that mesoscale circulation may not control the biology but it shapes it.  Slides of large eddies offshore of shelf-break were shown.   These included eddies off the Gulf of Alaska AC eddies, CCS winter AC eddies and CCS AC summer eddies. 

Outreach included cruises and the SMILE PROGRAM (not funded by GLOBEC) Developing HS Curriculum with foci on Oceanography and Remote Sensing.  The purpose is to increase the numbers of historically underrepresented and other educationally disadvantaged students who: Graduate from high school, pursue higher education to prepare for scientific careers.  Highlights of the program include 16 years of service to over 4,000 SMILE students. The enrollment for the year of 2003-2004 is expected to be 820 students.  SMILE teachers and over 11,000 students are impacted every year. SMILE has a partnership with 12 school districts while supporting 76 teachers in 41 schools.  Since 1993, SMILE has awarded over $222,000 in college scholarships.


     This meeting’s Science Talk was given by Cyndy Tynan from WHOI.  The title of her talk was “Toward Predictive Biophysical Models of Cetacean Occurrence Patterns in the California Current System”.  She reiterated that the goal of U.S. GLOBEC is to understand and predict how marine species respond to global climate change.  The long-term research objective is to develop predictive biophysical models of the occurrence patterns of top-trophic predators (i.e., mammals and seabirds) in the northern California Current System and to improve our understanding of the responses of top predators to climate-related variability in an upwelling boundary current system.  She stated that the objectives within GLOBEC Northeast Pacific program are:

1)      Methodology - Line-transect surveys of cetaceans; oceanographic data; model of cetacean occurrence patterns

2)      Results of multiple logistic regression model of cetacean occurrence patterns relative to ocean conditions

3)      Cetacean distributions relative to physical forcing and productivity during process studies, Northern California Current, June and August, 2000

4)      Spatial variability: strong mesoscale linkages with Columbia River plume, upwelling front, bank, NCC jet, meanders

5)      Summary, further analyses and synthesis.

The process study region she spoke about extended from Cresent City, CA to Newport, OR.  There were two survey periods in 2000, one from May to June and the other from July to August.  The line transect surveys are conducted using two pair of 25x150 power binoculars. They can see about 8 kilometers from the ship.  The observers are surveying an arch from about ten degrees off the bow to 90 on their side of the show. They are focusing on the track line, so that nothing is missed.  Slides were shown depicting the efforts from cruises.

The modeling included 15 variables: SST, SSS, thermocline depth, thermocline gradient, halocline depth, halocline gradient, distance to alongshore front, chlorophyll a maximum, depth of chlorophyll maximum, acoustic backscatter - 38   kHz - 120 kHz - 200 kHz – 20 kHz and spatially fixed latitude and depth.  There were sufficient sightings to run the model for four species: Slope-associated was Pacific white-sided dolphin and Dall’s porpoise, Shelf-associated was Harbor porpoise, Slope or shelf associated was Humpback whale.

The humpback whale in the spring had an 84.2% variance explained with the most important variables being SSS, backscatter 200 kHz (+), Chl.max (+).  In the spring there was a 54.1% variance explained with the most important variables being Chl. max. (+), 38 kHz (+), Chl. max. (+)  and distance to alongshore front.  Slides were shown on whale sightings and distribution with respect to salinity, chlorophyll and backscatter.

The Pacific white-sided dolphin had a 39.2% variance in occurrence pattern explained with 9 variables that were significant.  The most important being depth (+), thermocline depth (+), 38 kHz (+).  Dall’s porpoise in the Spring had a 25.6% variance with 2 variables which were 200 kHz (-), 420 kHz (+).  In the Summer 70.6% variance with 9 significant variables distance to alongshore front (+), SSS (+), Thermocline depth (-).

Harbor porpoise in the Spring had a77.5% variance 11 variables were significant  Latitude (+), Thermocline depth (+),200 kHz  (-) In the summer there was a 61.0% variance with 6 significant variables, latitude (+), chlorophyll max.(+), and distance to alongshore front (-).

Cyndy summarized her Science Talk by noting the following -- Coastal upwelling and mesoscale variability of the northern California Current System affect the temporal and spatial variability of cetacean occurrence patterns. High percentage of explained variance (up to 84%) in cetacean occurrence patterns is attributed to the concurrent acquisition of fine-scale oceanographic data. Model of occurrence pattern of slope-associated small cetaceans (e.g., Dall’s porpoise) is more successful in late summer when mesoscale variability (e.g., meanders) in the NCC was higher.  Value of the chlorophyll maximum is an important predictor of humpback whale and harbor porpoise occurrence patterns in summer; SSS more important than SST. Acoustic backscatter was significant for each species; encouraging that with further taxonomic definition of backscatter the percentage of explained variance in occurrence patterns will increase further.

In the future, a test model with 2002 data coupled with circulation models (wind-driven, thermohaline) will be done.  There will be further examination flow-topography interactions (NCC and Heceta Bank) and cetaceans and the estimation of carbon flux via top-predators will be examined.


The NSF Report was presented by Phil Taylor.  The budget has been about the same for the last five years.  NSF does not have a budget right now, but it is not anticipated in any way that this will affect GLOBEC.  GLOBEC’s budget should remain about the same as last year.  The main issue is dealing with AO’s.   At this point we are moving forward.  There is a delay in getting the NEP information out.  The AO is being processed.  Right now an estimated date of March 1 would be the earliest for deadlines for proposals.

The NOAA Report was presented by Elizabeth Turner.  As of now, NOAA funding for next year is in turmoil.   A budget request was sent to the President and the response was quite different from the House and the Senate.  The House has a budget line in the budget for Coastal Ocean programs for $10 to $11 million, which is less than that which was requested.  The Senate has no line for Coastal Ocean Programs, This has been eliminated.  The funds for this have disappeared and have turned up in other NOAA lab funds.  The language associated with these funds says that it is for extramural research.   CORE is working on having the budget language changed in the senate.  The budget is still unclear at this time.  NOAA is running the first stage of synthesis through NSF.  The announcement will run through NSF for the Pacific Program.  Beth’s ability to fund grants may be eliminated, but she may still be able to fund things through NOAA  transfers to NOAA investigators and through cooperative institutes which are resident at several institutions.

AO GEORGES BANK                              

Peter Wieibe spoke briefly about the second AO for Georges Bank synthesis that was in the Briefing Book. There are three principle points that need to be addressed in the AO: The physical-biological model in a larger scale; upstream and broader scale effects influenced by climate change; and development of indices to characterize these environmental changes in the ecosystem.  The text has been modified from the first AO.

Peter walked the group through some minor proposed changes to the AO.  After looking at the AO together it was agreed that the proposal needs to be broader and bolder.  The questions that should be asked are “What are the pieces you need to have out of Georges Bank?” “What do you want?” and “What do we want to leave the community with when George’s Bank is over?” This is what needs to go into the AO.  The AO needs to address synthesis.

Much debate and many comments were made and stressed that it is not different enough from the last AO and not broad enough.  This is the last chance to decide what will be taken into the synthesis phase.  This AO is not strong enough and is not thinking globally enough.  The Georges Bank Synthesis AO was reworked and will be reworked again.

A motion was made to resurrect the Fogarty document so that the revised AO can include text that is from the guideline of that report.  Discussion was turned to finding the Fogarty report. A rough outline of the report was found.  The committee will continue to search for the final draft.

SSC BUSINESS - Membership

The status of the current SSC Members was discussed.  There are seven people staying on the committee.  They are D. Ainley, N. Bond, R. Brodeur, K. Daly, D. Haidvogel, Y. Kushnir and M. Ohman.  Rotating off are M. Fogarty, P. Mace, J. Parrish, W. Pearcey, and C.Werner.   End of terms have come for R. Beardsley, L. Crowder, M. Dagg and N. Mantua.  The Ex-Officios are M. Fogarty, E. Hofmann. T. Powell. T. Strub, C. Werner and P. Wiebe.

Thinking ahead to the new phase of GLOBEC, the SSC needs to decide what area of expertise is needed on the SSC to cover the synthesis stage.  The following categories for new SSC Membership were decided upon: 

1)      Modeling:

·        Circulation

·        Ecosystem

·        Data Assimilation

2)      Climate:

3)      Trophic Structure:

4)      Ocean Observing:

5)      Ecosystem Management.  

The seven members staying on the SSC were placed under their area of expertise.  Then there was a discussion of people that could be added to the list.  SSC is looking to add about eight new members at both the Junior and Senior level.  There was a lengthy discussion and process of choosing names for the list and discussion of the expertise of these people.

The meeting adjourned for the day at 1730.

U.S. GLOBEC Scientific Steering Committee Meeting

National Academy of Sciences

J. Eric Jonsson Conference Center

Woods Hole, Massachusetts

6-7 November 2003

Friday, November 7th

Dale Haidvogel, Chairperson of the SSC, called the meeting to order at 0830 hours.  A brief overview of the meeting agenda was presented.  Issues included unfinished SSC Business, Cyber Infrastructure, Data Management, Synthesis Activities, Related Initiatives, and a review of intercessional activities.

Members in attendance were Bob Beardsley (WHOI), Nick Bond (NOAA), Mike Dagg (LUMC), Kendra Daly (USF), Dale Haidvogel (Rutgers), Mark Ohman (Scripps), Zack Powell (UC Berkeley), Ted Strub (OSU), Francisco Werner (UNC), and Peter Wiebe (WHOI).

Guests in attendance were Madeline Gazzale (Rutgers), Robert Groman (WHOI), Linda Lagle (WHOI), David Robertson (Rutgers), Phil Taylor (NSF), Elizabeth Turner (NOAA), Cyndy Tynan (WHOI), and Lew Rothstein (URI).


The membership discussion continued.  The list was narrowed to two choices in each category in addition to the SSC Members already on the list.  There are 16 people on the final list that will be approached to stand for election to membership.  Haidvogel will send out a synthesis of what was decided and a summary of the process for calling the individuals that were chosen to stand for election.

Steve Murawski was voted by acclamation and was called to see if he would be interested in serving.  He displayed interest and will get back to the committee with his decision.

The SSC Objectives were read, discussed, expanded upon and changed.  The final form of the U.S. GLOBEC SSC Objectives is shown in Appendix A.

Georges Bank Synthesis AO changes were discussed further.  The AO was reworked.  Mark, Ted, Zack and Peter have the charge of working together on improving the AO according to the SSC suggestions.


Zack Powell spoke about Cyberinfrastructure for the Ocean Sciences.  A workshop was held in 1998 for modeling and data to determine recommendations for the program.  The workshop directives were to set in place a description of a large modeling and data assimilation program, a scientific steering committee, an interagency task team, announcement of opportunities and a Working Group on data bases/archiving.

All ocean science disciplines have to be involved.  Data collection, access and archiving are important topics.  There is a recognition of the importance of enhancements in computational ability, including HPC and small to medium-size users.  Information technology and infrastructure including education and outreach need to be addressed.  Therefore, the Ocean IT committee’s charge is to come up with an assessment of past reports and plans and make a need assessment for the future.  Pilot projects will be developed.

The committee is preparing a white paper to form an announcement of opportunity to get money at a modest level into the community to start this activity.  Pilot Projects suggested for preparation for the white paper include:

1)      Federation of Data Bases – Grid access to data bases, observing systems

2)      Sharing of Data Sets – Need to share data between disciplines

3)      Processing Pipeline – Management of workflow in complex computing environments. HPC –Data Assimilation, Nested Models- examples were shown

4)      Standard Services – Identical procedures for all elements of a data set – example would be generation of images in the same fashion for all categories in a data set, classroom applications of research results and techniques, remote instrument monitoring protocols.

5)      Collection in a box – “Off-the-shelf” notion – example would be a model in a box or data in a box that could be used in the classroom

6)      Data preservation – Beyond archiving can we replicate data resources if systems go down, are these resources available on line, embedded manipulation of tools and the authentication of data

7)      Data discovery and visualization – Widely available, readily linked to scientific questions

Web security, access control, service, and resource management are all things that need to be looked at and addressed.  Workshops are needed to education our community. The projects selected should achieve demonstrable success in 2-3 years, address important common problems, build bridges between oceanography and computer science, justify increasing support over time and a quick substantial buy-in from the oceanography community.

What will success look like?  Increased hardware, software, personnel, and networking.  The atmospheric side and the ocean side need to come together.  We need the tools to bring these groups together.


Bob Groman gave a brief update of the activities of the WHOI Data Management Office. The US GLOBEC Data System web-site provides access to on-line data for the US GLOBEC Georges Bank, US GLOBEC Northeast Pacific and the US GLOBEC Southern Ocean  programs. The data dictionary provides links to data object.  He went over how to access the data that is on-line by either cruise or by stations. 

Georges Banks has 56 of its 120 cruise reports on-line.  The Northeast Pacific-Gulf of Alaska has 35 of its cruise reports on-line with 16 to be added soon and another 36 coming later.  The Northeast Pacific-California Gulf has 46 of its 48 cruises on-line.  Northeast Pacific on-line data includes CTD, SST, along track, bottle, SeaSoar, nutrients, pigments and event logs.  Southern Ocean has all of its 11 cruises on-line.  Information includes ice core and water column bacteria studies, bird studies, BIOMAPE RII, chlorophyll, irradiance and productivity studies, MOCNESS CTD data, nutrient data, sea ice data, whale sonobuoy data, 120 kHz acoustic backscattering data and ADCP data.

It was noted that there is some missing data for all regions.

At present they are working on enhancing accessibility to the data and the kinds of tools they can use with the data.  A new software packages that is being investigated is GEO ZUI 3D.  Working to have it include the following data visualization enhancements:

1.      acoustic backscatter data

2.      arbitiarily spaced scalar & vector data

3.      axes, labels, grids, bounding boxes

4.      underlying bathymetry surfaces

5.      multiple color maps for each object

6.      point and click object identification

7.      3-D thumbnails and list boxes for easier selection and previewing of variables

Bob then demonstrated how to access data on-line and how you can manipulate that data.

Peter Weibe then spoke about GEO ZUI 3D which comes from the University of New Hampshire and its uniqueness because it can run huge files fast. He showed how the program worked and gave examples.  GEO ZUI 3D provides a powerful and attractive way to look at data.   One of the draw backs of GEO ZUI is that it needs a graphics card large enough to handle the GL.  Commerical program called Snag-It allows you to build a box around what you want highlighted and save it out into any format that you want.


Georges Bank Synthesis PI Meeting will be held in November.  An EU/NA synthesis workshop will be held in Iceland.  The purpose of this workshop is to discuss synthesis and what we know today and highlight plans at the international level for basin scale synthesis.

A Young Investigators Workshop is being planned for the summer of 2005 to introduce them to WOSE Models and Data Sets in hopes of energizing the synthesis activity.  Past Young Investigators Workshop were very successful.  NCAR is interested in hosting this event.  The goals, timing, length, and format of the workshop have to be considered.  Past workshops of this nature ran about three weeks.   For this project three weeks may not be long enough.  We have to determine the structure of the workshop.  Dale, Zack, Ted and Cicso will start moving forward with the program.  They will define plans and will submit a proposal back to the SSC for approval.


Lew Rothstein gave a brief report on The Partnership for Advancing Interdisciplinary Global Modeling (PARADIGM).  The focus of PARADIGM is to develop and implement data-assimilative, coupled physical/ecosystem models, with embedded biogeochemical components for a range of marine environments.   PARADIGM models will be capable of emergent behavior testing the central hypothesis that fundamental regime shifts occur in response to climate change.

The primary technical objective is to develop an Ecosystem Model Development Program.  Group is trying to create new global ocean biogeochemistry community models, comprising complex ecosystem dynamics based upon functional groups (e.g., diatoms, copepods), individual keystone species, and multi-element limitation and cycling (e.g., C, N, P, Si, Fe).

The Scientific Goal is a model- and observation-based comparison of ecosystem-biogeochemical dynamics of the North Pacific and Atlantic subtropical - subpolar gyres, including coastal regimes, with special emphasis on new paradigms for physical and chemical control of plankton community structure and function, the consequences for biogeochemical cycling, the effects of sub-mesoscale and mesoscale forcing, and the dynamics of long-term, climate-driven ecosystem regime shifts.

Another goal is to meet the challenge of merging observations and models through advanced data assimilation techniques, development of interdisciplinary data products for incorporation into models, and application of new statistical and complex dynamical systems analysis techniques. The merging of observations and models also requires a rigorous model (in)validation effort.

There are four scientific themes that will be addressed:

1.      Biogeochemical cycles

·        What factors govern phytoplankton biomass, productivity and export, the net remineralization of organic matter below the euphotic zone, and the spatial (e.g., biogeographical regimes) and temporal (e.g., climate regime shifts) variations in these global processes?

2.      Community structure

·        What processes govern plankton community structure and function and how do physical-chemical-biological interactions influence biogeochemical processes in the ocean system?

3.      Scales of physical forcing 

·        How do mesoscale and sub-mesoscale physical variability impact ecosystem fluxes and community structure? 

4.      Advanced interdisciplinary models

·        How do we best merge observations and models?

These four scientific themes will be addressed through specific, inter-connected research activities.  These themes are the core of our program.  They are supported by ecosystem model development, high-resolution basin-scale and regional processes, numerical methods, data synthesis, assimilation and validation. 

Lew then focused on the Data Assimilation Program and its two objectives. The first is to determine the priority of the data resolution and data types needed for our data-assimilating models. Specific research tasks include developing new assimilation techniques that accommodate the inherent nonlinearity of PARADIGM’s coupled models.  Ecosystem processes more closely resemble a set of switches.  This is a much more difficult assimilation problem rather than smoothly varying functions. It also needs to develop knowledge of the error functions for relationships among functional groups across the wide variety of ocean conditions.

There is also the numerical implementation objective for data assimilation.  This objective will aim to translate our research effort into the algorithms that will enable PARADIGM models for the simultaneous assimilation of physical and biological data sets. Specifically, we will implement multi-component data assimilation techniques using e.g. optimal and sub-optimal, adjoints and Kalman smoothers.   It was noted that the more sophisticated you get with data assimilation the less sophisticated you get with the model itself.   

The project management meets twice a year and is made up of an Executive Committee which changes every 3 years.  There are PI and “Virtual” meetings, and an Annual PI Workshop.  They are looking to form new partnerships with other groups.  The group is always looking for new members, especially young scientists.  Community interactions include workshops, summer schools, web-based interactive exchanges and the distribution of forward model and data assimilation products, computational algorithms, etc.

In conclusion, PARADIGM objectives are ambitious and require collaborations outside of our program.  Multi-component data assimilation modeling is central to PARADIGM.


Kendra Daly spoke about the state of planning for the Ocean Observatories Initiative (OOI) and the Ocean Research Interactive Observatory Networks Program (ORION). The U.S. Integrated Ocean Observing System (IOOS) is a federation of distributed observing systems (backbone) with nested regional observing systems for operational and routine ocean observations to assess and predict the effects of weather, climate, and human activities on the state of the coastal ocean.  The global component of IOOS is GOOS which has been around for many years and will form the connection between the U.S. efforts and the global efforts.  This will be integrated and coordinated through the Ocean.US Office in Washington, DC.  It is envisioned that it will eventually be administered through NOAA.  The goal is to set up long-term research observations (observatories) and technology development.

Kendra went on to explain the NSF Major Research Infrastructure and Facilities Construction Account (MRE-FC).  This is an agency-wide capital asset account which provides funding for major science and engineering infrastructure (10’s-100’s of M$).  This was established in FY 1995.  She then went through the lifecycle of an MREFC request.  First the Project is proposed and approved by the Director’s office and the MREFC Panel.  It then goes on to receive the National Science Board approval.  It is then placed in a NSF budget request to OMB (fall) and the submitted into the Presidents Budget (no later than the first Monday in February, 2006.)  This date is still in question.  The purpose of the MREFC infrastructure is to provide funding that cannot be funded through normal funding activities.   It is a foundation for new discoveries and major advancements which will provide significant new impact on scientific capability.

The NSF side of the Ocean Observatories has three components:

       Regional Scale

§         Fiber optic cabled

§         Substantial seafloor power/bandwidth

       Coastal Observatories

§         Fiber optic and moorings “Pioneer Arrays”

§         Significant bandwidth/power

       Global Network - Moorings

§         Long time series

§         High bandwidth telemetry/seafloor power

At the Regional Cabled Observatory Meeting held in October of 2003 in San Francisco it was determined that NEPTUNE will be the regional cabled observatory.  This site will provide sustained power and 2-way communication to support instrumentation for time-series measurements and real-time adaptive sampling.  This is something that has not been done to date.  She then pointed out possible areas where these cables will be placed.

Coastal Observatories are not that well defined. NSF is looking to provide new construction or enhancements to existing facilities leading to an expanded network of coastal observatories.  It may include ‘Pioneer’ re-locatable arrays, cabled moorings and there have been discussions about CODAR.

Global Observatories started out to support seismic geophysical processes.  It will include re-locatable global array of deep-sea buoys that can also be deployed in harsh environments such as the Southern Ocean.

The funding is presently over $208 million over a five-year period starting in 2006.  Concerns have been raised within the U.S. science community on whether or not funding for these types of projects will take funds away from core programs.     


Dale Haidvogel then spoke about nested interdisciplinary modeling ongoing in the Northwest Atlantic.  Consider looking locally in a region like the Gulf of Maine, taking into account the kinds of impacts and interactions that a regional location may have with the next scale up.  From a modeling perspective there are several ways to go about intercommunicating between different regions.  Two are unstructured grids and nested regional models. The latter is being used most widely at present. The set of nested regions in the North Atlantic that are being used currently at Rutgers include: the North Atlantic Basin, the Northeast North American shelf (NENA), the inner Mid-Atlantic Bight [MAB; site of the NSF CoOP Buoyancy driven flow (LaTTE) experiment], and the  region surrounding the Martha’s Vineyard Observatory (site of the ONR CBLAST-Low experiment).  The concept is to have these regions communicating together, and thereby to encompass all scales from the basin scale down to the Atlantic shelves. 

Dale then showed 14 months of a ROMs simulation of the North Atlantic Basin.  The simulation is successful in many respects; e.g., it produces the expected forms of internal variability in the NW Atlantic.  It also has limitations, however.  Though the MAB shelf is somewhat isolated from remote forcing, the salinity of the Scotian Shelf inflow plays a significant role in interannual variability of the MAB and preconditions water masses and stratification inshore from the shelf-slope front.   Present NENA solutions have a weak, or reversed, Maine Coastal Current because of inadequate salinity open boundary conditions on the Scotian Shelf, in turn inherited from the North Atlantic Basin model.  O

Further refinement to the NAB model, including data assimilation, could in principle improve the salinity budgets on its Scotian shelf.  Nonetheless, this is already a very labor- and cpu-intensive calculation.  (For example, each day of simulation requires 46 CPU hours.  Fortunately, these may be spread over multiple processors!)  What we need is routine access to basin-scale boundary and initial condition datasets obained from a data-assimilative North Atlantic model. 

Fortunately, this is where the U.S. GODAE program comes in.  It has a funded component to produce data-assimilative hindcasts and forecasts using the Hybrid Coordinate Ocean Model (HYCOM).  The Rutgers group has been funded by GODAE to move beyond nesting within the climatologically forced ROMS NAB model to one-way nesting of NENA within the HYCOM data assimilating North Atlantic model. This development will apply inter-annual variability to the inflow open boundary conditions of the NENA model.  They are also developing one-way nesting of NENA within the approximately seven-km resolution European MERCATOR North Atlantic operational 14-day forecast system.


Dale congratulated everyone for a very successful meeting.  He will be sending action items to everyone. 


The Next SSC Steering Committee Meeting will be held at Scripps and is tentatively set for the week of April 26, 2004 on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday.

The meeting was adjourned at 1430.

Appendix A

US GLOBEC SSC Objectives

1.      Improve efforts to understand the roles of ocean and atmospheric interannual variability/climate change  in controlling ecosystem response

2.      Provide oversight and guidance of synthesis within and between US-GLOBEC regions

3.      Encourage national and international cross-study comparison/synthesis

4.      Ensure the availability of GLOBEC data

5.      Coordinate with ongoing efforts to upgrade and unify data management in the marine and geosciences

6.      Support the improvement of coupled physical/biological modeling and their application for ecosystem models

7.      Facilitate the transition of research results to ecosystem based management

8.      Help in the design of future ocean observatories

9.      Aid in the planning of future science initiatives