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The rapid pace of economic, ecological, and social change has dramatically influenced the way ocean and coastal environments around the world are mapped and managed. Our ability to measure change in the oceans (open, nearshore, or coast) is increasing, not only because of improved measuring devices and scientific techniques, but also because new GIS technology provides a better understanding of this dynamic environment. From collection and display of data to complex simulation, modeling, and the development of new research methods and concepts, we continue to evolve GIS to better empower ocean scientists, resource managers, and conservationists.

New Esri Oceans Hub


Esri's new hub of ocean resources includes apps for ocean analytics, informative blog posts, story maps, and Learn Lessons, plus information about the annual Esri Ocean, Weather, and Climate Forum for collaborating across ocean subdisciplines.

Explore the oceans hub

Ecological Marine Units- A 3D analytic basemap of the ocean


Ecological marine units (EMU) are 3D renderings of observations about ocean characteristics. A foundation for a standardized and practical global ecosystems classification and map for the ocean, EMU’s are being used in over 15 projects worldwide. The data is free and open within ArcGIS Living Atlas of the World.

A global 3D basemap of the ocean
EMU’s greatly benefit ocean research, design of marine protected areas (MPA’s), and classroom instruction.
Explore EMUs
Ecological Coastal Units in progress
View a video update from senior scientist Roger Sayre at The United States Geological Survey (USGS) on the Global Islands project as part the ECU initiative.
Watch the video
One Ocean
See how to load global EMU data as points, and render them in the One Ocean Spilhaus projected coordinate system.
Read the article
Explore the Maldives
See an Indian Ocean subset of the EMU’s in a custom web app using the Javascript API.
Explore in 3D

An ocean of story maps


With the storytelling tools in ArcGIS, the ocean community is telling powerful stories about ocean science, conservation, exploration, and fieldwork. Find motivation for your story with the story maps in this unique collection of outstanding science communication examples that inform, educate, and inspire scientists, conservationists, decision-makers, and the public.

Advanced ocean basemaps


The Ocean Basemap includes a vector tile layer for bathymetry, surface and subsurface feature names, and derived depths, designed for use by ocean GIS specialists or as a reference map by anyone interested in ocean data. New content is available across all styles of vector tile layers, enabling customization of both layer content and display appearance.

Ocean content in Living Atlas

ArcGIS Living Atlas of the World is the foremost collection of geographic information from around the globe. Featuring a fantastic array of ocean content, you will find authoritative, carefully curated maps, apps, and data layers to support a wide range of ocean science or maritime activities. 

Ocean Solutions, Earth Solutions

Now in its second edition, this externally peer-reviewed research monograph is based on the most outstanding papers initially presented at the Esri Ocean GIS Forum. With a focus on use-inspired science and realistic solutions for mapping, monitoring, and protecting the ocean, hence the entire Earth, it is also the first Esri Press book to employ Digital Object Identifiers (DOIs) for citation of both the book and its supplementary datasets. 

Benthic Terrain Modeler

The Benthic Terrain Modeler is a Python-3-based set of geoprocessing tools to analyze benthic terrain for the purposes of classifying surficial seafloor characteristics. It now implements block-based processing for large raster calculations using the NumPy and SciPy scientific libraries.

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