Coral Reef Watch—Satellite Monitoring Decision Support System
NOAA Coral Reef Watch's online global decision support system uses satellite, in situ, and modeled data to deliver tools that help managers prepare for and respond to environmental stress to coral reef ecosystems, especially stress caused by climate variability and change. Marine managers can use the site to:
- Monitor and predict environmental conditions leading to coral bleaching events and disease outbreaks;
- Assist bleaching risk assessments and preparation, implementation, and communication of timely, effective protective responses and adaptation actions;
- Assess spatial extent of reef areas affected by prolonged high ocean temperatures or land-based sources of pollution; and
- Identify coral reefs resilient to climate change for long-term conservation and marine spatial planning.
Near-real-time products are currently derived from sea surface temperature, light, wind, and ocean color data collected by instruments on satellites. The products can be used to detect, monitor, and predict thermal stress events that are conducive to mass coral bleaching events and coral disease outbreaks.
Products also identify coral reef and associated areas impacted by land-based sources of pollution following major runoff events, enabling prompt and effective management responses and assessments.
Weekly to seasonal forecasts project future reef thermal conditions, giving managers the opportunity to actively prepare for upcoming mass bleaching events.
Thermal history products derived from historical satellite data provide information to marine spatial planning efforts and identify coral reefs that are resilient to climate change, and thus may be candidates for long-term conservation.