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The European Marine Observation and Data Network (EMODnet) is a long-term marine data initiative funded by the European Maritime, Fisheries and Aquaculture Fund, which, together with the Copernicus Marine Service and the Data Collection Framework for fisheries, implements the EU’s Marine Knowledge 2020 strategy.

EMODnet connects a network of over 120 organisations supported by the EU’s Integrated Maritime Policy who work together to aggregate Ocean observations, process the data according to international standards and make that information freely available as interoperable data layers and data products. This ‘collect once and use many times’ philosophy benefits all marine data users, including policy makers, scientists, private industry and the public. It saves costs for offshore operators, while also opening up new opportunities for innovation and growth.

The aim of EMODnet is to increase productivity in all tasks involving marine data, to promote innovation and to reduce uncertainty about the behaviour of the sea. This lowers the risks associated with private and public investments in the blue economy, and facilitates more effective management and protection of the marine environment.

EMODnet provides easy and free access to marine data, metadata and data products and services spanning seven broad disciplinary themes: bathymetry, geology, physics, chemistry, biology, seabed habitats and human activities. Each theme is dealt with by a dedicated partnership of organisations with the expertise necessary to standardise the presentation of data and create data products within the scope of the thematic area. To demonstrate the power of opening up Europe’s wealth of marine observations and data, EMODnet turns marine data into maps, digital terrain models, time series & statistics, dynamic plots, and provides map viewers and other applications to support researchers, industries and policy makers to tackle the many Ocean challenges we face.

High quality marine data are the foundation for delivering the EU Green Deal. The EMODnet service is the focal point for in situ integrated marine environmental and human activities data and data products that are used by thousands of users who need high quality, harmonised and standardised data and information as input to operations at sea, as observations and information on the health of the Ocean and on human impact for regional sea-basin assessments and European Directives e.g., the Marine Strategy Framework Directive, and as evidence to underpin wider policy decisions, international Ocean governance and more.

EMODnet is one of the core data infrastructures and Ocean services which, together with the Copernicus Marine Service and Copernicus Data and Information access service (DIAS), form the backbone of a future European Digital Twin Ocean, a key contribution to the EU marine data space and regional best practices for the global Ocean data ecosystem.