Oceanographic Data Tools: Informing the oil & gas industry and marine planning sector

Lead Research Organisation: Scottish Association For Marine Science
Department Name: Scottish Association For Marine Science


ODaT will work with BP and Marine Scotland to scope, develop and test an innovative data layer tool. The tool will translate legacy oceanographic data into a series of maps (data layers) to inform; oil spill response and management, routine oil exploration environmental monitoring, and decision making and marine management. The tool will be supported through an internally constructed web mapping service, allowing the outputs to be integrated into BP's oil and gas standard Common Operating Picture (COP) and Marine Scotland's National Marine Plan Interactive (NMPi).

Informative data layers will provide the oil and gas sector with a unique capability to access and utilise the UK's oceanographic data sets. The ability to integrate the layers into the oil and gas sector COP system will significantly increase effectiveness and impact from the project. As an outcome, the sector will be able to enhance their existing operations by basing future environmental management decisions on the best available information.

The NMPi is a well-established and publicly accessible marine planning system. It is crucial that the NMPi is continually updating its content to ensure that it remains an effective public service. ODaT will broaden the NMPi content, providing an informative GIS layer based on the outputs of NERC oceanographic science programmes. This will significantly enhance the service, benefiting a wide range of marine stakeholders.

Working with BP and Marine scotland, ODaT will support the key deliverables of broader ocean observation collaborations and working groups. ODaT will, in turn, act as an exemplar to the broader oceanography community, demonstrating how an innovative data tool, developed through effective knowledge transfer, can translate oceanographic data to benefit the wider marine community.

Planned Impact

The outcome of ODaT will be a series of layers, refined by key stakeholders. The layers will take the form of GIS layers, visualising oceanographic data in a form that is understandable and integratable into the oil and gas Common Operating Picture (COP) and the Marine Scotland NMPi.

The ongoing relationship and effective knowledge exchange between SAMS and the oil and gas community (via the FASTNEt directed fellowship) has identified that baseline oceanographic data is fundamental to improving the industry's situational awareness. Situational awareness in the oil and gas industry is key to effective management of routine environmental monitoring, decommissioning and oil spill response. The industry manage their situational awareness through a COP, a large GIS system that allows the integration and overlay of spatial information. Baseline oceanographic information is sparse within this system and often purely represented. This project will utilise oceanographic data in combination with SAMS knowledge of adaptive data interpolation, to construct informative layers. Once uploaded onto the WMS, these layers will form an innovative tool that can be integrated into the COP. This will ensure that future decisions on how the industry manages the environment will utilise the best available oceanographic baseline information.

Marine Scotland's NMPi is a publicly available service designed to assist in the development of national and regional marine planning. The NMPi team is continually working to ensure that they can provide as much new and credible information as possible. ODaT will broaden the service content, providing an informative layer to the NMPi audience. Through the NMPi dessimentation, the integration of the new tool will be advertised to an extensive community of marine users. Integrating Marine Scotland in the development process will provide the team with valuable context on what Marine Scotland see as important to their online community, ensuring maximum impact from the outcomes.


10 25 50