GCOS-GOOS-WCRP Ocean Observations Panel for Climate
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About OOPC

The panel's mandate

The Ocean Observations Panel for Climate (OOPC) is a scientific expert advisory group charged with making recommendations for a sustained global ocean observing system for climate in support of the goals of its sponsors. This includes recommendations for phased implementation. The Panel also aids in the development of strategies for evaluation and evolution of the system and of its recommendations, and supports global ocean observing activities by interested parties through liaison and advocacy for the agreed observing plans.

The OOPC is sponsored by the Global Climate Observing System (GCOS), the Global Ocean Observing System (GOOS), and the World Climate Research Programme (WCRP). These in turn are programmes that depend on the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) of UNESCO, the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), the International Council for Science (ICSU), and for the two observing systems, the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP).


In 1978, recognizing the key role of the ocean in climate, WCRP, the Scientific Committee on Oceanic Research (SCOR), and the IOC established the Committee on Climate Changes and the Ocean (CCCO). In 1990, the CCCO together with the Joint Scientific Commitee (JSC) of the WCRP, established an Ocean Observation System Development Panel (OOSDP) to develop the scientific basis for an ocean observing system for climate. The GCOS Steering Committee incorporated the recommendations of the OOSDP report into GCOS plans as the ocean component of GCOS, and agreed to implement the system in cooperation with the Global Ocean Observing System (GOOS). The current sustained global ocean observing system for climate is jointly the global component of GOOS and the ocean component of GCOS. The OOSDP expired when it completed its comprehensive design for an Ocean Observing System for Climate. The OOSDP final report, Scientific Design for the Common Module of the GOOS and the GCOS: An Ocean Observing System for Climate, was published in March 1995. The OOSDP additionally published seven background reports.

The OOPC was formed as to follow-up on the work of the OOSDP, and first met in 1996.

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 OOPC Secretariat - IOC/UNESCO - 1 rue Miollis - 75732 Paris cedex 15 - France 2005-6 IOC/UNESCO