Science Plan

Progress in SOLAS science is needed to assess the impact of anthropogenic emissions on future climate and ecosystem services, as well as the environmental consequences of policy options.

SOLAS 2015-2025 Science Plan and Organisation

SOLAS is the only global organisation facilitating integrated ocean-atmosphere research, across disciplinary and national boundaries.

The SOLAS science plan forms a solid basis to continue the operation of international SOLAS for the period 2015-2025, under the sponsorship of SCOR, Future Earth, WCRP, and iCACGP.

The human biogeochemical footprint on the planet is now so large that future quality and sustainability of environmental resources will be determined by societal choices and natural variability. There is an enormous benefit to society in understanding the environmental consequences of societal trends and policies. For the SOLAS realm, providing the critical knowledge for competent decision-making will require improved process-level understanding of biogeochemistry, and an enhanced observational capacity, particularly for remote regions of the atmosphere and oceans.

The SOLAS science plan focuses on five core themes (see below) that have been developed by the SOLAS community.

Core Themes

The SOLAS science mission is organised around five core themes:

Core Theme 1: Greenhouse gases and the oceans
Core Theme 2: Air-sea interface and fluxes of mass and energy
Core Theme 3: Atmospheric deposition and ocean biogeochemistry
Core Theme 4: Interconnections between marine ecosystems, aerosols, and clouds
Core Theme 5: Ocean biogeochemical control on atmospheric chemistry

In addition, the study of the five core themes will be integrated in efforts to understand key environments, such as upwelling systems, polar oceans, and the Indian Ocean, as well as to evaluate the environmental efficacy and impacts of climate intervention proposals, policy decisions, and societal developments. Innovative structures will be developed to pursue additional SOLAS priorities in capacity building and inter-organisational cooperation.


Finally, with the release of the new science plan, we would like to take the opportunity to acknowledge the active and significant contribution of Roland von Glasow to Atmospheric Science, to SOLAS, and to this science plan. Roland set the solid basis on which the next decade of SOLAS will built upon. Words cannot do justice to the loss that he is to both our scientific communities and those of us who also knew him as a friend. In his memory.

SOLAS 2004-2014 Science Plan and Implementation Strategy

The 2004-2014 SOLAS Science Plan and Implementation Strategy sets out the scientific scope of SOLAS and outlines a strategy for addressing the major issues that are identified.

The Science Plan and Implementation Strategy formed the basis on which the project was being built and was developed to start the operation of international SOLAS for the period 2004-2014 under the sponsorship of IGBP, SCOR, WCRP, and iCACGP.

The Plan deals with the following issues or Foci. Each Focus is divided into several Activities.

  • Focus 1: Biogeochemical Interactions and Feedbacks Between Ocean and Atmosphere
  • Focus 2: Exchange Processes at the Air-Sea Interface and the Role of Transport and Transformation in the Atmospheric and Oceanic Boundary Layers
  • Focus 3: Air-Sea Flux of CO2 and Other Long-Lived Radiatively Active Gases

It also inclues a description of the organisation and management of SOLAS and outlines of how it will be implemented.