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EMB Autumn Plenary Meeting 2020 - Online

Dates: 4-5 November 2020

Venue: Online due to COVID-19 crisis

During the meeting, the members were updated on EMB activities over the past 6 months since the EMB Spring Plenary Meeting 2020, noting the different nature of this year due to the COVID19 pandemic.

The recent 7th EMB Forum event on Big Data in Marine Science was discussed, as was the EMB Science Webinar series which was launched over Summer 2020. Progress for the EMB working groups on Geohazards and Underwater Noise was presented, and the new working group on Coastal Resilience was announced. The members also approved a new EMB activity on Marine Renewable Energy and on sustained funding for ocean observations.

Impact reports were present for 3 previous EMB publications: Future Science Brief 2 on Marine Graduate Training, Future Science Brief 3 on Biological Ocean Observations, and Future Science Brief 4 on Marine Ecosystem Modelling. The Board also discussion the contribution of EMB to the UN Ocean Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development.

An open session was held to discuss the positive and negative impacts of COVID19 on EMB members and their marine science. Emma Heslop (IOC-UNESCO) presented impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on the Global Ocean Observing System and outlined GOOS's work in this area, and EMB Executive Director presented the initial report on the EMB survey of its members on COVID19 and marine science. This was followed by two breakout discussions, to explore in more detail the negative impacts and positive outcomes and opportunities provided by the pandemic. The EMB Young Ambassadors, who all wrote blogs about their experiences of the COVID19 pandemic also participated.