the digital twin for the ecosystem we want to protect
There is an immediate and strategic need to better administer to our oceans’ health, coral reefs, and coastal environments. As believers in evidence-based science, we share the framework necessary to provide better data-driven decisions.
Our Collaborative Beach Coral Reef Registry is a single source, living document for coral and coastal data. With user-friendly, interactive, scalable ESRI Geographic Information System (GIS) portals, maps and meta data, we can capture a holistic view of coral reef and coastal environments and assist in the transformation of data into actionable insights and help provide projections and solutions for the environmental crisis that coral and our oceans currently face.
For example, take the repository for the Florida Keys, The Keys Collector Dashboard. Right now, this combination of marine data and conservation implementation is unmatched by any other organization in the Keys or anywhere.
Through the Collaborative Beach and Coral Reef Registry, WFCRC can help merge local and international science and connect communities and citizenry with all available data.
During the middle to late Jurassic period, coral reefs began to appear in the rock record, the layers of rock strata that geologists, paleontologists, and other earth scientists use to help understand geologic epochs and the Earth’s evolution over the course of millions of years.
The rock record, with its layers of fossils and sediment, has led to the discovery and understanding of past events and helps scientists identify cycles and patterns, providing the evidence and framework and to make reasonably reliable predictions of what is to come.
While we know coral reefs have been on the planet a long time, data collection and retention is limited.
Many individuals, companies, and academic institutions have made great strides in capturing compartmentalized marine and geological data. Two of the more expansive reef records currently available are the NOAA Coral Reef Information System and ReefBase.
However, much of the world’s information remains scattered across the globe, stored in different formats. It's not always accessible, well-known, or even shared. Without a structured and shared data-managing system, it’s often difficult to find information, or even to know what information exists.
WFCRC invites you to participate in this coral conservation program by submitting relevant observations and being part of the solution. Join the many other like-minded beach and coral reef cartographers by helping us digitally map the current state of our beaches, coasts, and reefs.
WFCRC is working in alignment with other major organizations such as the United Nations, Mission Blue, The Living Oceans Foundation, and others in effort to address key knowledge gaps and better share the reef science through a diverse range of partnerships, not only to support immediate action and first-response plans, but to assist in long-term solutions for healthy oceans and ecosystems as well.
To be successful, on-going, site-specific attention is required to maintain current levels of reef presence and prevent future decline. With data gathering and sharing, education, and long-term partnerships with divers, conservationists, the science community and local governments, decision-makers may be able to implement data-driven actions that can promote sustainable reef conservation.
The Collaborative Beach and Coral Reef Registry invites local participants to observe, monitor, and study environmental facts and impacts on coral reefs—terrestrial, marine and human—over periods of time.
WFCRC consolidates the various types of collected data into a site-specific, searchable platform for a deep-dive into the digital Earth, described by some as a “geological Google” or a “digital twin.”
By mashing up mutable information layers, previously unknown events, trends, patterns and trouble spots become visible, allowing better decisions to be made based on real-time data.
With location-based digital stream tracing, alerts from gaging stations and other pollution and sediment sources, GIS mobile maps can give local communities a heads up on impending events, like sediment flows, for example.
In the short term, beach goers would find this information helpful as they plan fishing trips or decide where to swim. In the long term, we may be able to implement better strategies and practices that preserve the health of the ecosystems we love and rely on.
Participants can access the interactive map from their mobile devices where they’ll be able to upload information and access all information collected by others.
Our goal is to keep the platform simple enough to encourage involvement and dynamic enough to be an engaging reminder of the many participants collaborating in effort to be a part of something larger.
"At the moment the earth science community is really held back in many areas because we haven’t managed to set data free. It’s still in isolated databases, or even worse, in analogue form." ~ Michael Stephenson, AAPG member and executive chief scientist at the British Geological Survey