A new international organization, the North Pacific Marine Science Organization (PICES) will be established to promote and coordinate marine scientific research in the northern North Pacific Ocean and the Berlin Sea. This was decided in Ottawa on December 12, 1990, when a draft convention was approved by representatives of Canada, China, Japan, the United States, and the Soviet Union.

PICES will focus on research on the ocean environment and its interactions with land and atmosphere, its role and response to global weather and climate change, its flora, fauna and ecosystems, its uses and resources, and impacts upon it from human activities. Such studies relate not only to the effects of fishing and environmental change on fish stocks but also to such issues as the impacts of oil spills and other forms of pollution and the eventual consequences of climate change for uses of the ocean and its resources.