Ocean Health

One of the David and Lucile Packard Foundation’s long-term goals is to restore the health and productivity of the world ocean, on which all life depends. MBARI research results have contributed to raising public awareness about the health and future of the ocean.

Studying the impact of deep-sea dumping

Figure 47 2

Although many nautical maps show sites where chemical weapons have been dumped years ago, it had not been clear if these sites contain serious hazards or might be free of munitions waste. MBARI researchers conducted surveys of one supposed deep‐water dump site off Southern California. The preliminary survey turned up trash and 55‐gallon drums, but no chemical munitions. In addition to suggesting that not all marked sites contain chemical munitions, this study demonstrates that underwater robots can be used to survey such sites to identify areas of concern.

Related

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Lost shipping container study

While observing the seabed at 1,300 meters depth during a dive with the ROV Ventana in the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary, researchers discovered a shipping container resting on the seabed.

Ocean Health Projects

SeeStar at Work
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SeeStar Imaging System

The motivation behind the development of the SeeStar camera system is to have a method of quantifying zooplankton that works without human intervention, and which can be deployed for many scientific purposes.
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Lost shipping container study

While observing the seabed at 1,300 meters depth during a dive with the ROV Ventana in the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary, researchers discovered a shipping container resting on the seabed.
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MBARI research shows where trash accumulates in the deep sea

Surprisingly large amounts of discarded trash end up in the ocean. Plastic bags, aluminum cans, and fishing debris not only clutter our beaches, but accumulate in open-ocean areas such as the "Great Pacific Garbage Patch." Now, a paper by researchers at MBARI shows that trash is also accumulating in the deep sea, particularly in Monterey Canyon.

Making an impact

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Exploration and Discovery

Exploration inevitably leads to discovery. MBARI is uniquely positioned to explore the deep-sea realm and its connections with the ocean surface. Easy access to Monterey Bay’s deep submarine canyon provides a natural laboratory for scientific research and engineering innovation.
A SOCCOM float in the Southern Ocean.
SOCCOM is a National Science Foundation-sponored program to outfit a fleet of drifters in the Southern Ocean with sensors to monitor temperature, salinity, pH, nitrate, and oxygen down to depths of 2,000 meters.
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Climate Change

Climate-driven changes in upwelling, ocean mixing, oxygen minimum zones, and nutrient cycling are likely to affect the year-to-year variation in ocean ecosystem processes. These changes will potentially impact marine life and the fundamental underpinnings of fisheries from shallow to deep-sea habitats.
ocean health
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Ocean Health

One of the David and Lucile Packard Foundation’s long-term goals it to restore the health and productivity of the world ocean, on which all live depends. MBARI research results have contributed to raising public awareness about the health and future of the ocean.