ASLO Town Hall brainstorms addition of marine LTER sites

Network News Spring 2015, Vol. 28 No. 1
Network News

On a calm Wednesday night during the 2015 Association for the Sciences of Limnology and Oceanography (ASLO) Aquatic Sciences Meeting 22-27 February in Granada, Spain, an interested group of scientists held a Town Hall meeting to explore the possibility of adding two new coastal marine sites to the Long Term Ecological Research (LTER) Network. Among the participants were representatives from several LTER sites. The National Science Foundation (NSF), which sponsors the LTER Network, was equally well represented by Rick Murray, the new Ocean Sciences Division Director; David Garrison and Mike Sieracki, the Biological Oceanography Program Managers; and Gayle Pugh, the Bio Oceanography Program Assistant.

Mark Ohman (CCE LTER) gave a brief overview of the U.S. LTER Network and his views on the main elements that constitute a site. Russ Schmitt (MCR LTER) illustrated the conceptual diagrams/guiding hypotheses of each of the eight marine LTER sites (focusing on these only because the new call will be from NSF Ocean Sciences). Chuck Hopkinson (PIE and GCE LTER) presented an overview of some cross-site synthetic science.

Although the Town Hall was moderately attended, those present asked lots of good questions. Several prospective proposers wondered how the LTER sites are able to accomplish so much with only $1 million per year.

The three ASLO Town Hall presentations are available through the NSF webpage,, so that those who were not able to attend may also benefit from the discussions. Meanwhile, NSF’s Division of Ocean Sciences has created a listserv ( for those interested in learning more about LTER, in advance of a possible Announcement of Opportunity for proposals for new sites.