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Séminaire de Geoffroy Lamarche (NIWA, Wellington, New Zealand)

National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA), Private bag 14-901, Wellington, New Zealand. School of Environment, University of Auckland, Auckland, NZ Email:

Recognizing the poor overall resolution of the world ocean’s bathymetry, GEBCO and the Nippon Foundation have joined forces to establish the Seabed 2030 Project, an international effort with the objective of facilitating the complete mapping of the world ocean by 2030. The aim of Seabed2030 is to empower the world to make policy decisions, use the ocean sustainably and undertake scientific research based on detailed bathymetric information of the Earth’s seabed. It supports the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 14 which is « to conserve and sustainably use the world’s oceans, seas and marine resources ».

The Seabed 2030 Project has established a strong governance and strategy to insure the success of its mandate. Four regional data assembly and coordination centers (RDACCs) are responsible for assembling databases; develop protocols for data collection and tools to assemble and attribute appropriate metadata. The Centres are responsible for identifying data gaps and opportunities for new data collection, including the facilitation of new mapping endeavours through coordination of ongoing activities. Regional Mapping Committees, groups of regional experts, were established to work with the Centre in identifying data sources, including those that are not currently in publicly available databases.

Seabed 2030 encourages and supports the development of new and innovative technologies that can increase the efficiency of seafloor mapping, including crowd sourcing, and thus make the ambitious goals of Seabed 2030 more likely to be achieved.

The GEBCO 2019 release presents a huge improvement on the 2014 version, but many bathymetric datasets remain unidentified and one major task is to complete a gap analysis which will require to include information on all academic, government, navy and industry data acquired, regardless of whether these data are readily accessible.