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A Review of the Draft Ocean Research Priorities Plan: Charting the Course for Ocean Science in the United States Committee to Review the JSOST Research Priorities Plan Ocean Studies Board Division on Earth and Life Studies THE NATIONAL ACADEMIES PRESS Washington, D.C. www.nap.edu
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THE NATIONAL ACADEMIES PRESS 500 Fifth Street, N.W. Washington, DC 20001 NOTICE: The project that is the subject of this report was approved by the Governing Board of the National Research Council, whose members are drawn from the councils of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, and the Institute of Medicine. The members of the committee responsible for the report were chosen for their special competences and with regard for appropriate balance. This study was supported by a contract between the National Academy of Sciences and OCE-0602432 award/grant number from the National Science Foundation. Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the organizations or agencies that provided support for the project. Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data or International Standard Book Number 0-309-0XXXX-X Library of Congress Catalog Card Number 97-XXXXX Additional copies of this report are available from the National Academies Press, 500 Fifth Street, N.W., Lockbox 285, Washington, DC 20055; (800) 624-6242 or (202) 334-3313 (in the Washington metropolitan area); Internet, http://www.nap.edu Copyright 2006 by the National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved. Printed in the United States of America
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The National Academy of Sciences is a private, nonprofit, self-perpetuating society of distinguished scholars engaged in scientific and engineering research, dedicated to the furtherance of science and technology and to their use for the general welfare. Upon the authority of the charter granted to it by the Congress in 1863, the Academy has a mandate that requires it to advise the federal government on scientific and technical matters. Dr. Ralph J. Cicerone is president of the National Academy of Sciences. The National Academy of Engineering was established in 1964, under the charter of the National Academy of Sciences, as a parallel organization of outstanding engineers. It is autonomous in its administration and in the selection of its members, sharing with the National Academy of Sciences the responsibility for advising the federal government. The National Academy of Engineering also sponsors engineering programs aimed at meeting national needs, encourages education and research, and recognizes the superior achievements of engineers. Dr. Wm. A. Wulf is president of the National Academy of Engineering. The Institute of Medicine was established in 1970 by the National Academy of Sciences to secure the services of eminent members of appropriate professions in the examination of policy matters pertaining to the health of the public. The Institute acts under the responsibility given to the National Academy of Sciences by its congressional charter to be an adviser to the federal government and, upon its own initiative, to identify issues of medical care, research, and education. Dr. Harvey V. Fineberg is president of the Institute of Medicine. The National Research Council was organized by the National Academy of Sciences in 1916 to associate the broad community of science and technology with the Academy's purposes of furthering knowledge and advising the federal government. Functioning in accordance with general policies determined by the Academy, the Council has become the principal operating agency of both the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Engineering in providing services to the government, the public, and the scientific and engineering communities. The Council is administered jointly by both Academies and the Institute of Medicine. Dr. Ralph J. Cicerone and Dr. Wm. A. Wulf are chair and vice chair, respectively, of the National Research Council. www.national-academies.org
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COMMITTEE TO REVIEW THE JSOST RESEARCH PRIORITIES PLAN ROBERT DUCE, Co-Chair, Texas A&M University, College Station NANCY TARGETT, Co-Chair, University of Delaware, Lewes DENISE BREITBURG, Smithsonian Environmental Research Center, Edgewater, Maryland DAVID CONOVER, State University of New York, Stony Brook CORTIS COOPER, Chevron Energy Technology Company, San Ramon, California CATHERINE CUNNINGHAM BALLARD, Michigan Department of Environmental Quality, Lansing GERALD GALLOWAY, University of Maryland, College Park ROBERT KNOX, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, La Jolla, California WILLIAM KUPERMAN, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, La Jolla, California ROGER LUKAS, University of Hawaii, Honolulu JAMES SANCHIRICO, Resources for the Future, Washington, DC ANDREW SOLOW, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, Massachusetts DENISE STEPHENSON HAWK, The Stephenson Group, Atlanta, Georgia Staff SUSAN ROBERTS, Study Director FRANK HALL, Program Officer SUSAN PARK, Associate Program Officer TONI MIZEREK, Christine Mirzayan Science and Technology Policy Graduate Fellow JEFFREY WATTERS, Christine Mirzayan Science and Technology Policy Graduate Fellow SARAH CAPOTE, Senior Program Assistant Prepublication vii
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OCEAN STUDIES BOARD SHIRLEY A. POMPONI (Chair), Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institution, Fort Pierce, Florida LEE G. ANDERSON, University of Delaware, Newark JOHN A. ARMSTRONG, IBM Corporation (retired), Amherst, Massachusetts WHITLOW AU, University of Hawaii at Manoa ROBERT G. BEA, University of California, Berkeley ROBERT DUCE, Texas A&M University, College Station MARY (MISSY) H. FEELEY, ExxonMobil Exploration Company, Houston, Texas HOLLY GREENING, Tampa Bay Estuary Program, St. Petersburg, Florida DEBRA HERNANDEZ, Hernandez and Company, Isle of Palms, South Carolina CYNTHIA M. JONES, Old Dominion University, Norfolk, Virginia ROBERT A. LAWSON, Science Applications International Corporation, San Diego, California WILLIAM A. KUPERMAN, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, La Jolla, California FRANK E. MULLER-KARGER, University of South Florida, St. Petersburg JOAN OLTMAN-SHAY, NorthWest Research Associates, Inc., Bellevue, Washington ROBERT T. PAINE, University of Washington, Seattle S. GEORGE H. PHILANDER, Princeton University, New Jersey RAYMOND W. SCHMITT, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, Massachussets DANIEL SUMAN, Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science, University of Miami, Florida ANNE M. TREHU, Oregon State University, Corvallis Staff SUSAN ROBERTS, Director FRANK HALL, Program Officer SUSAN PARK, Associate Program Officer ANDREAS SOHRE, Financial Associate SHIREL SMITH, Administrative Coordinator JODI BOSTROM, Research Associate NANCY CAPUTO, Research Associate SARAH CAPOTE, Senior Program Assistant Prepublication viii
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Preface Ocean science is complex and multidisciplinary. The committee congratulates the Joint Subcommittee on Ocean Science and Technology (JSOST) for undertaking, for the first time, a comprehensive planning activity that involved all federal agencies that support ocean-related research in the United States. The effort recognizes that synergies between and within agencies can enhance the outcomes and impacts of ocean science for the benefit of science and society. The task was challenging and difficult, and the final plan should be of great benefit to the ocean sciences community. David Halpern (U.S. Office of Science and Technology Policy), Margaret Leinen (National Science Foundation), and Richard Spinrad (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration), co-chairs of the JSOST, approached the National Research Council Division of Earth and Life Studies in August, 2005, to assist with this research planning effort through a 3-phase process. In Phase 1, the National Research Council (NRC) staff provided summaries of recommendations from NRC reports published in the past 7 years that related to the themes, pillars, and cross-cuts identified by the JSOST. In Phase 2, an ad hoc NRC committee was appointed to review the draft Ocean Research Priorities Plan (ORPP) and provide recommendations for improvement. This document represents that review. The committee was given three months from the release of the complete draft to provide this review. In Phase 3, the committee is to provide an assessment of the final ORPP within 6 months of the release of the final plan. The committee held three meetings and four conference calls during the preparation of its Phase 2 report. The first conference call was held on April 13, 2006, in preparation for the Denver workshop organized by JSOST to provide community input into the development of the draft research plan. The committee's first meeting was held on April 1820 in conjunction with the Denver workshop. At this workshop, committee members observed the various breakout sessions that discussed the themes and cross-cut areas outlined in the planning document. The committee received the first draft of the Ocean Research Priorities Plan on July 28, 2006. The July draft did not include the near-term priorities, which were included in the complete draft, Charting the Course for Ocean Science in the United States: Research Priorities for the Next Decade, released to the committee on August 30, 2006. The committee met twice following the April workshop to discuss the draft research plan and to write this report: on August 810, 2006, in San Francisco to discuss the plan made available on July 28, and again on September 2526, 2006, in Houston to complete the review of the draft plan, including the near-term priorities. ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS This report has been reviewed in draft form by individuals chosen for their diverse perspectives and technical expertise, in accordance with procedures approved by the National Research Council's Report Review Committee. The purpose of this independent review is to provide candid and critical comments that will assist the institution in making its published report as sound as possible and to ensure that the report meets institutional standards for objectivity, evidence, and responsiveness to the study charge. The review comments and draft manuscript remain confidential to protect the integrity of the Prepublication ix
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deliberative process. We wish to thank the following individuals for the participation in their review of this report: LEE G. ANDERSON, University of Delaware, Newark KATHERINE ANDREWS, Coastal States Organization, Washington, DC ROBERT G. BEA, University of California, Berkeley PAULA COBLE, University of South Florida, St. Petersburg RUSS E. DAVIS, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, La Jolla, California EARL H. DOYLE, Shell Oil (retired), Sugar Land, Texas PAUL G. GAFFNEY, Monmouth University, West Long Branch, New Jersey EDWARD D. HOUDE, University of Maryland, Solomons EDWARD LAWS, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge MOLLY MCCAMMON, Alaska Ocean Observing System, Anchorage PETER J. MCCARTHY, Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institution, Fort Pierce, Florida MARCIA K. MCNUTT, Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute, Moss Landing, California ANTHONY F. MICHAELS, University of Southern California, Los Angeles R. KEITH MICHEL, Herbert Engineering Corporation, Alameda, California Although the reviewers listed above have provided many constructive comments and suggestions, they were not asked to endorse the conclusions or recommendations nor did they see the final draft of the report before its release. The review of this report was overseen by Kenneth H. Brink, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, Woods Hole, Massachusetts, and Alexander H. Flax, Consultant, Columbia, Maryland. Appointed by the National Research Council, they were responsible for making certain that an independent examination of this report was carried out in accordance with institutional procedures and that all review comments were carefully considered. Responsibility for the final content of this report rests entirely with the authoring committee and the institution. The committee and its co-chairs are greatly appreciative of the significant support that we have received from the staff of the Ocean Studies Board. Their assistance facilitated the work of the committee and contributed to an enjoyable and productive working committee environment. In particular we thank Dr. Susan Roberts who served as study director, associate program officer Dr. Susan Park, and program officer Dr. Frank Hall who was involved with the early work of the committee. Ms. Toni Mizerek and Mr. Jeff Watters were a great help during their tenure with the National Research Council as graduate fellows for the Ocean Studies Board. We are also grateful to Ms. Sarah Capote for her superb skills in organizing the committee meetings and conference calls. The committee feels that the positive, accomplishment-oriented attitudes of each of these individuals enhanced the final outcome of the study. Robert Duce, Co-Chair Nancy Targett, Co-Chair Prepublication x
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Contents EXECUTIVE SUMMARY 1 SUMMARY 4 1 INTRODUCTION AND BACKGROUND 13 Origin of the NRC Study, 14 Review of the Draft Ocean Research Priorities Plan, 14 2 DEVELOPMENT OF THE OCEAN RESEARCH PRIORITIES PLAN 15 Addressing the Statement of Task, 17 3 ASSESSMENT OF THE OVERALL PLAN 18 Introduction, 18 Organization of the Draft Plan, 18 Themes, 21 Priorities, 21 Time frame, 23 Presentation, 23 Addressing the Statements of Task, 24 Recommendations, 25 4 EVALUATING THEMATIC PRIORITIES AND CROSS-THEME INTEGRATION 26 Introduction, 26 Recommendation, 29 Stewardship of Our Natural and Cultural Ocean Resources, 31 Clarity and Appropriateness of the Priorities, 32 Appropriateness of the balance among substantive research areas, and between research activities such as observation, modeling, and communicating results, 32 Recommendations, 32 Increasing Resilience to Natural Hazards, 33 Clarity and Appropriateness of the Priorities, 33 Appropriateness of the balance among substantive research areas, and between research activities such as observation, modeling, and communicating results, 33 Recommendation, 34 Enabling Marine Operations, 34 Clarity and Appropriateness of the Priorities, 34 Appropriateness of the balance among substantive research areas, and between research activities such as observation, modeling, and communicating results, 35 Recommendations, 36 The Ocean's Role in Climate, 36 Clarity and Appropriateness of the Priorities, 36 Appropriateness of the balance among substantive research areas, and between research activities such as observation, modeling, and communicating results, 37 Recommendations, 38 Improving Ecosystem Health, 38 Clarity and Appropriateness of the Priorities, 38 Appropriateness of the balance among substantive research areas, and between research activities such as observation, modeling, and communicating results, 40 Prepublication xi
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Recommendation, 41 Enhancing Human Health, 41 Clarity and Appropriateness of the Priorities, 42 Appropriateness of balance among substantive research areas, and between research activities such as observation, modeling, and communicating results, 42 Recommendation, 43 5 INTERDISCIPLINARY AND MULTI-MISSION OCEAN RESEARCH 44 The Need for Interdisciplinary and Multi-Agency Approaches, 44 Implementation, 46 Addressing the Statements of Task, 46 Recommendations, 47 6 EVALUATION OF NEAR-TERM PRIORITIES 48 Selection of Near-Term Priorities, 48 General Comments, 48 Comments on Specific Near-Term Priorities, 50 Forecasting the Response of Coastal Ecosystems, 50 Comparative Analysis, 50 Sensors for Marine Ecosystems, 50 Assessing MOC Variability, 50 Addressing the Statements of Task, 51 Recommendations, 51 7 INFRASTRUCTURE AND INTELLECTUAL CAPITAL 53 Physical Infrastructure, 53 Information Infrastructure, 54 Intellectual Capital, 54 Addressing the Statements of Task, 55 Recommendations, 55 REFERENCES 57 APPENDIXES 59 A Committee and Staff Biographies, 59 B Acronyms, 64 Prepublication xii