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Great Lakes Observing System Assembles Data Community at 2015 Annual Meeting

The Great Lakes Observing System (GLOS) Annual Meeting (October 7-8, Ann Arbor) provided an opportunity for data managers, environmental scientists, and others interested in Great Lakes science and information to exchange information and ideas about coordinating data collection and management in the Great Lakes region. GLOS is one of 11 regional associations in the Integrated Ocean Observing System and was organized for the purpose of connecting data users with data providers in ways that are supportive of policy and decision making. CGLI President Kathryn Buckner is a member of the GLOS Board of Directors.

Presenters at the meeting reported the progress of several projects supported by GLOS that are designed to align data collection efforts with specific management objectives that address harmful algal blooms in Lake Erie. In addition, presenters described methods of working with data to support decision-making, and highlighted projects in which data management enhanced regional programs. CGLI President Kathryn Buckner moderated a session that described three initiatives that seek to coordinate and enhance Great Lakes data and information management. Panelists included Jen Read (University of Michigan Water Center), who described the objectives and activities of Annex 10 (Science) of the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement; Scott Sowa (The Nature Conservancy), who explained two data and information working groups convened by the International Joint Commission; and Steve Cole (Great Lakes Commission), who described the Great Lakes Blue Accounting initiative.

GLOS is interested in creating private sector partnerships to expand the Great Lakes data network and identify data needs within the private sector. Opportunities to access Great Lakes data and/or participate in sustaining the network of buoys and other monitoring assets in the Great Lakes region are available. Current buoys can provide physical data regarding water levels, temperatures, wave actions, wind conditions, etc. as well as water quality parameters such as dissolved oxygen, pH, conductivity, nutrient levels, and other chemical constituents. Through partnerships, GLOS buoys can be outfitted to provide customized data as needed. Please contact us for more information about these opportunities.

Caption: CGLI President Kathryn A. Buckner moderates “The Future of Great Lakes Data” panel at the GLOS Annual Meeting.