bullet markerMain Page
GLOBEC Related Links
GLOBEC Seal and NOAA Seal/PFEL Logo
a joint effort of the
GLOBEC Seal and the
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
National Marine Fisheries Service
Southwest Fisheries Science Center


Welcome to the PFEL/GLOBEC page. It describes the research activities of PFEL scientists as part of the Northeast Pacific (NEP) Program of US GLOBEC (GLOBal ECosystem Dynamics). It is also supported by core research activities at PFEL.

Many marine populations common to the NEP have fluctuated coincidentally with large variations with the physical environment, implying that a physical mechanism may be driving biological variability. NEP populations co-vary with distinct populations throughout the North Pacific and in other eastern boundary ecosystems. This suggests these populations respond to climate change occurring on basin to global scales.

Correlative studies of physical and biological time series are the primary basis connecting climate change and population shifts. Such correlations suggest potential environmental-fisheries links, but do not clearly identify the dynamical mechanisms by which the impacts of climate change are transferred through marine ecosystems.

To effectively manage ecosystems and their fisheries, it is critical to understand, monitor, and predict the physical processes that contribute to large shifts in the abundance, production, and distribution of marine populations. The project PATTERNS, SOURCES AND MECHANISMS OF DECADAL-SCALE VARIABILITY IN THE NORTHEAST PACIFIC seeks to improve our understanding of the links between environmental and biological variability on interannual to decadal time scales.

This is done principally through the retrospective analysis of data sets compiled from historical observations of the marine environment and numerical model simulations. The project relies on state of the art methods of database development, extraction, and visualization combined with innovative statistical modeling techniques recently introduced to the area of climate research.

Our project's goals are consistent with the goal of the NEP Program: "To understand the effects of climate variability and change on the distribution, abundance, and protection of marine animals .... in the North Pacific."

This research is funded by the National Science Foundation and the NOAA Coastal Ocean Program as a project of the US GLOBEC NEP Program. The GLOBEC-supported research is complemented by base-funded research at PFEL.