World Ocean Science Congress (WOSC) is designed as a quadrennial event starting with WOSC-2015 to be held at Kochi from 5th to 8th of February 2015. WOSC is expected to serve as a common platform for Oceanographers, Environmentalists, Fishing community, Shipping industry, Navigators, Defense establishments. Ocean technocrats, Policy makers and Legal experts to share ideas and strengthen regional cooperation in the management and conservation of the ocean and its resources. WOSC -2015 is organised jointly by the Swadeshi Science Movement, Vijnana Bharati, Kerala chapter and the Kerala University of Fisheries and Ocean Studies (KUFOS), Kochi. The focal theme of WOSC – 2015 is “Protect Oceans for Posterity”.
Life on earth largely depends on oceans – both directly and indirectly. Marine habitats provide us resources such as food, medicine, minerals and services like uptake of atmospheric carbon dioxide ,modulation of weather systems etc. which in monetary terms translate to trillions of dollars a year.Traditionally mankind has been depending on the oceans for fish, recreation and navigation. With advancements in technology, human activities have expanded to deep-sea shing, extraction of oil, natural gas, minerals, gas hydrates, construction of mega cities, ports and harbours all of which have the potential to deteriorate ocean environment. Bioprospecting of ocean ora and fauna for novel drugs has gained immense importance in recent years.This increasing pursuit for economic gains with little or no ecological considerations is a threat to the oceans and the very existence of mankind, as well. Commercialization of the ocean sector has led to the collapse of major sheries, displacement of shermen community from the coastal belts, disappearance of large areas of mangrove forests and loss of maritime traditions and cultures.
Ocean is the common heritage of mankind. We need to protect and conserve it for posterity and sustenance. Oceans Biological Carbon Pump which account for a net removal of 47% of atmospheric carbon dioxide is under immense threat from a changing climate and the consequent reduction in biomass of photoautotrophs. Increasing incidence of episodic events such as cyclones, hurricanes, tsunamis and harmful algal blooms and a steady rise in mean sea level due to global warming are major challenges the coastal states and island nations need to address in the near future requiring huge economic and infrastructural investments. Therefore it is imperative that global and regional cooperation in science and technology need to be strengthened towards developing adaptive strategies to a changing ocean environment modulated through global events such as the El Nino – Southern Oscillation (ENSO) and Indian Ocean Dipole (IOD).