22-May-2012: International Day for Biological Diversity “Marine Biodiversity”

Submitted by ward.appeltans on Mon, 2012-05-21 07:31

Ms Irina Bokova, Director-General of UNESCO, stressed that to protect it, we must first better understand marine biodiversity [press release]. There is a wealth of information available, but data are still patchy, and many places in the ocean are still unexplored.
Ms Irina Bokova also said, “Good data is essential for good policy” and recognized the role of the UNESCO Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission, and specifically the Ocean Biogeographic Information System (OBIS), part of the International Oceanographic Data and Information Exchange (IODE).
Indeed, OBIS integrates over a thousand datasets from several hundred institutions worldwide, to provide access to 32 million observations of >100,000 marine species. It is by far the largest global information source of marine species distributions and becomes a powerful tool to provide quantitative baselines of biodiversity at the regional and global level.
Being one of the most important legacies of the 10-year Census of Marine Life, IOC/IODE is proud to be the new home for OBIS since the IOC Assembly in June 2009 adopted OBIS within its IODE Programme (Resolution XXXV-4). OBIS plays a key role in IOC/IODE and UNESCO's programmes and Strategy for Action on Climate Change, as well as contributes to the objectives of the Convention on Biological Diversity.

  • Official site for International Day for Biological Diversity: link
  • UNESCO's involvment in the International Day for Biological Diversity: link
OBIS is a project of:
IODE Sponsored by:
Martin International and Les Grands Explorateurs
With in-kind support from:
Marine Geospatial Ecology Lab, Duke University
Universidad Simón Bolívar Flanders Marine Institute

OBIS strives to document the ocean's diversity, distribution and abundance of life. Created by the Census of Marine Life, OBIS is now part of the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) of UNESCO, under its International Oceanographic Data and Information Exchange (IODE) programme.