Ocean Data Viewer

About the site

About the Ocean Data Viewer

The Ocean Data Viewer offers users the opportunity to view and download a range of spatial datasets that are useful for informing decisions regarding the conservation of marine and coastal biodiversity. These decisions ultimately affect the ocean's health and productivity, which provide the ecosystem services that are necessary for our well-being, livelihoods, and survival. To date, the users of this tool have included government agencies, scientists, researchers, the corporate sector, and non-governmental organisations.

These data come from internationally respected scientific institutions and other organisations that have agreed to make their data available to the global community, with the hope that these data will support and encourage informed decision-making that sustains global biodiversity and ecosystem services.

The Ocean Data Viewer is primarily a mechanism to view and download data, and is not intended to be used for analysis or to query data.

Are we missing data? We welcome feedback and contributions of additional or corrected datasets. Please contact us at marine@unep-wcmc.org.

What resources are available? We encourage data users to read the Manual of marine and coastal datasets of biodiversity importance as an introduction to the various challenges, gaps and limitations which can be presented by coastal and marine datasets, and particularly by those at the global scale. This manual also provides a list of 128 known datasets, database, and data portals containing marine and coastal data of biodiversity importance (Annex 2, pp. 32-42). If you have suggestions of how this manual could be improved, or of additional marine and coastal data sources, please contact Lauren Weatherdon and Corinne Martin.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the requirements for using these datasets? Please note that data users are obliged to cite the datasets they use, as outlined on the ‘dataset detail’ pages and in the associated ‘metadata’ sheets. Users should also review the terms and conditions of use for each dataset before downloading.

How can I search for datasets? The ‘search and filter’ panel allows users to select datasets by keywords, publication dates, categories, formats or data types, and geographical ranges. Click on ‘reset’ to clear all filters and view the full list of datasets.

Where can I view a list of all datasets on the Ocean Data Viewer? A list of datasets can be downloaded from the following link: http://wcmc.io/ODV_data. For a more detailed resource of known marine and coastal datasets globally, please see Annex 2 of the Manual of marine and coastal datasets of biodiversity importance (pp. 32-42).

Can I view multiple datasets at once? More than one dataset may be selected, with the order of appearance depending on the order of selection. For example, if the user wishes to see ‘mangroves’ on top of ‘protected areas,’ then the ‘protected areas’ layer should be selected first, followed by the ‘mangroves’ layer.

How can I navigate the map? Users can use the ‘hand’ to navigate the map. To zoom in and out, use the + and – buttons (top-right of the screen).

Where can I find the version of the dataset? Where applicable, versions are noted for each dataset on the main page and in the associated metadata and citation. Datasets that are new or have been updated within the last 30 days are highlighted using tags.

Where can I download the data and find more information? The ‘dataset detail’ page provides more information on a particular dataset, including a downloadable ‘metadata’ sheet, access to a ‘factsheet’ on the Biodiversity A-Z website, access to the dataset in GIS format, a link to the dataset at ArcGIS Online, and policies of relevance. Please note the ‘use constraints’ for each dataset.

Contact information

UN Environment World Conservation Monitoring Centre
219 Huntingdon Road
Cambridge
CB3 0DL

Tel: +44 (0)1223 277314
Fax: +44 (0)1223 277136

marine@unep-wcmc.org