The Provence shoreline hosts the biggest cities within the Mediterranean arc regions with on one side, Marseille and their associated port and industrial activities and, on the other Toulon and his leading military port in France. The vicinity of the largest Mediterranean river (Rhone River) that flows over an extended continental shelf, the extensive fishing activities and the presence of numerous natural reserves induce that this region submitted to high anthropic pressure is an appropriate site for the implementation of a concerted Observation strategy.
The goal of MIO-OBS is to combine all observation activities that fall within the national labelled projects or into more specific or targeted research programs, by pooling human and material resources and appropriate technologies in an operational coordination.
The issues addressed here cover all the disciplines in Oceanography and meet therefore the dimension of transverse actions. These thematic areas concern man-induced impacts on the marine environment and more specifically the coastal zone, the interactions between near- and offshore systems, atmospheric and continental exchanges, all being recognized key ingredient of sustainable development as defined by LOICS and its successor Future Earth Coasts.
The aim of MIO-OBS is to produce thorough knowledge in order to anticipate major issues facing global change and to respond to a strong societal demand (DCE, DCSMM, programme européen MedOS...). Thus MIO-OBS should at term integrate these international networks in line with the recommendations of the « Infrastructures de Recherches ILICO “ and the national data network on long-term observations of the Earth system.