WESTPAC Training Workshop on Delivering Ocean Forecasting Services for Coral Reef Conservation held

 admin     |      2019-09-29 09:22
UNESCO/IOC Sub-Commission for the Western Pacific (WESTPAC) Training Workshop on Delivering Ocean Forecasting Services for Coral Reef Conservation was held during 11-13 September in Phuket, Thailand. The workshop was sponsored by WESTPAC and the Thailand National Committee for UNESCO, organized by Phuket Marine Biological Centre, the Thailand Department for Marine and Coastal Resources and the First Institute of Oceanography (FIO), Ministry of Natural Resources (MNR) of China. Around 30 researchers from the Southeast Asian area and China specialized in model development and coral reef conservation attended the workshop. Professor Fangli Qiao and Dr. Changshui Xia from FIO attended the workshop as lecturers. The aim of the workshop is to delivering the services of the Ocean Forecasting System developed by FIO into coral reef conservation in the region.
Southeast Asian seas have the highest concentration of coral reef biodiversity in the world. It is home to 75% of all known coral species. Because of climate change, oceanic acidification and sea water temperature rise, coral health has been declining over the past few decades. The main reason for coral bleaching is the rising temperature of sea water, which is also related to human activities. The bleaching and abrupt decline of coral reefs will lead to serious degradation of coral reef ecosystems, and will also lead to a sharp decline in biodiversity in coral reef areas, seriously affecting fisheries production, and loss of valuable biological gene pools.
Ocean Forecasting System can provide crucial forecast information, such as ocean current, ocean temperature and salinity, surface wave height and period, sea level to serve the needs of a variety of human activities related to marine hazards mitigation, oceanic search and rescue, fisheries, navigation, management and recreational activities. To meet the demands of its Member States especially in the Southeast Asia, WESTPAC has been endeavoring, since 2010, to develop an SEAGOOS Ocean Forecasting System (OFS) in partnership with several ocean institutions/universities. The Ocean Forecasting Systems for the 21th Century Maritime Silk Road was officially launched on 10 December, 2018 by FIO. Based on the global domain 10km resolution FIO-COM, the OFS system provides 5 days forecast products of surface wave height, wave period, sea level, three-dimensional ocean current, sea temperature and salinity. Through using international standard IVTT operational validations scheme, the forecast accuracy of this OFS system ranks the forefront of the world.
During the workshop, Professor Fangli Qiao gave lectures on the Ocean Forecasting Systems, the application of OFS product in the Algea Bloom in the Yellow Sea, the transport and dispersion of nuclear matters (137Cs) in the ocean and upwelling simulation study. The attendees showed great interests on the OFS, hoping to apply the Ocean Forecasting Services into Coral Reef Conservation and strength further cooperation with OFS team. Dr. Changshui Xia gave lectures on the basic idea and fundamental of ocean model, high resolution model near Phuket area and trace model. Prof. Somkiat proposed using high resolution OFS model to simulate the transport of coral reef larva in the region to help determine the source locations of the coral reef larva for better protection and recovery of the blenched coral reef. The workshop also proposed to develop the Coral Reef Monitoring and bleaching Early Warning System based on the operational OFS developed by FIO.
This workshop shows the importance of the OFS products in the coral reef conservation and will strength the cooperation among OFS team and the biology researchers especially coral reef scientists in the region.
The link of the workshop on the WESTPAC website: http://iocwestpac.org/news/918.html
Figure 1. Group Photo of the WESTPAC Training Workshop on Delivering Ocean Forecasting Services for Coral Reef Conservation

Figure 2. Professor Fangli Qiao gave the lectures on the Ocean Forecasting System and the application of OFS products
Figure 3. Professor Fangli Qiao gave the lectures on the upwelling system

Figure 4  Dr. Changshui Xia gave lectures on the basic idea and fundamental of ocean model, high resolution model near Phuket area and trace model