Plenary 4: ocean biogeochemical extremes and compound events

OA Week 2021, Plenary Session 4 OceanSODA – The Satellite Oceanographic Datasets for Acidification Project

Dr. Nicolas Gruber, Professor of Environmental Physics, Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule (ETH Zürich), Switzerland


The potential of satellite observed salinity for observing the surface water carbonate system was identified some time ago and this space-based capability, combined with established temperature observations from space, is now enabling the development of novel satellite observation-driven acidification and inorganic carbon assessments (eg Land et al., 2019; Gregor and Gruber, 2021; Green et al., 2021; Quilfen et al., 2021). The European Space Agency funded Satellite Oceanographic Datasets for Acidification project (OceanSODA) aimed to establish the role that satellite-based Earth Observations can play in supporting and expanding research and monitoring in ocean acidification. The project, now nearly complete, had two distinct foci, scientific advancement and downstream impact assessments. The scientific advancements have produced regional and global time-series data of the surface water carbonate conditions with well characterised accuracies. The downstream assessments included the characterization and analysis of how upwelling (of low pH waters), compound (heatwaves and high acidity) events, and large river outflows (of low pH waters) impact the carbonate system, and how these conditions could affect marine organisms and ecosystems. The project has also identified how satellite observations can be used for, and are critical for, observing Arctic carbonate system conditions. These capabilities and datasets are now beginning to be noticed by non-scientific user groups as they hold potential for guiding management and policy decisions. This plenary session will discuss how this work has evolved, highlighting the scientific advances, identify potential new scientific opportunities, and discuss how these capabilities are now being noticed by early adopters and stakeholders to support decision making, by considering a range of users from shellfish farmers through to regional resources managers advising US and Canadian state governors.

Ocean Acidification Week 2021 was sponsored by the following organizations:

(1) GOA-ON, the Global Ocean Acidification Observing Network,

(2) NOAA, the United States National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration,

(3) IAEA OA-ICC, the International Atomic Energy Agency – Ocean Acidification International Coordination Centre, and

(4) IOC-UNESCO – the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization

For more information, please visit

GOA-ON, YouTube, 24 September 2021. Text and video.

  • Reset


OA-ICC Highlights

%d bloggers like this: