CoastWatch/OceanWatch satellite data that are utilized for ecosystem monitoring include sea surface temperature, ocean color, sea surface salinity and sea surface height.

Sea surface temperature is used to monitor habitat changes for temperature sensitive species and for monitoring changes in ocean currents, upwelling and stratification that impact nutrient regimes and the spatial distribution of ecosystems.

Ocean color is used to monitoring the distribution of seagrasses, mangroves and other ecologically important ecosystems. Ocean color is also used to monitor sediment plumes and estimate optically important water constituents such as color dissolved organic matter, phytoplankton pigments and detritus.

Sea surface salinity measurements are important for monitoring coastal ecosystems such as bays and estuaries that are strongly impacted by riverine inputs.

Sea surface height is used to monitor sea level rise impacts on coastal ecosystems