What is MBON?
The Marine Biodiversity Observation Network (MBON) is a growing global initiative composed of regional networks of scientists, resource managers, and end-users working to integrate data from existing long-term programs to improve our understanding of changes and connections between marine biodiversity and ecosystem functions.
The U.S. MBON projects are integrating independent historical and current biology and ecosystem surveys with new observations, and expanding application of remote sensing methods, novel molecular (eDNA) technologies, traditional environmental research tools, and coordinated experiments.
Benefits of MBON
MBON projects, partners and data play an important role in enabling the scientific community to describe the relationships between biodiversity, organism abundance, system productivity, ecosystem health and ecosystem services.
Anticipated Benefits of MBON include:
- Providing biological and environmental data collected by multiple independent programs in an integrated web-based tool that informs scientists, resource managers, educators, and all stakeholders about the state of marine biodiversity and how it is changing.
- Providing best practices and mechanisms to share data, experiences, knowledge, and protocols to understand species and the status and trends of ecosystem services.
- Contributing to increasing our understanding of physical and biological connectivity, including distributions and movements of species across biogeographical regions and political jurisdictions.
- Sharing innovative technologies and methods developed for the observation of marine biodiversity (e.g. remote sensing and genetic methods).
- Expanding our knowledge of biodiversity and its connection to ecosystem services with the purpose of improving management of human activities that impact these services and promote sustainable use of such services.
- Leveraging and amplifying national investments in biodiversity research, monitoring and data management.
- Optimizing the costs of data management and improving access to information on marine biodiversity and ecosystem health.
- Providing a framework for a region or a country to evaluate status and identify trends in biodiversity and living marine resources.
U.S. MBON projects have been funded since 2013 under the National Oceanographic Partnership Program (FY14 RFP NOAA-NOS-IOOS-2014-2003803 and FY19 ONR Announcement # N00014-18-S-B007).
U.S. MBON represents a partnership among NOAA, NASA, BOEM, and ONR, with coordination provided by the U.S. Integrated Ocean Observing System (U.S. IOOS) Program Office.