The rapidly changing Arctic marine ecosystems face new challenges and opportunities that are increasing and shifting governance needs in the region. A group of economists, ecologists, biologists, political scientists and resource managers met in Stockholm, SE, Sept 4–6, 2014 to discuss the governance of Arctic marine resources in a spatial context. We report on the findings here.
A simple plume model is used to examine the near-field (100 km2) dispersion characteristics of dissolved CO2leaking from a small-area seabed seep in a vertically well-mixed coastal environment. We demonstrate how prior knowledge of the advective flow can be used to aid optimal positioning of monitoring stations capable of detecting seeps from anywhere in the area. As an example, a three-detector layout is proposed for a test site in Bass Strait, Australia, and an associated seep detection limit and monitoring time-scale for seep confirmation is identified. Dilution of the dissolved plume places strict limits on the minimum seep size that can be detected and depends non-linearly on the number of instruments used. Implications of the patchy nature of the dissolved plume, the potential future use of mobile detectors, and ability to account for background environmental variability, are highlighted.
The three basic principles of sustainable development, relating to ecology, economy and society, have long been embedded within national and international strategies. In recent years we have augmented these principles by a further seven considerations giving rise to the so-called 10-tenets of sustainable management. Whilst theoretically appealing, discussion of the tenets to date has been largely generic and qualitative and, until the present paper, there has been no formal and quantitative application of these tenets to an actual example. To promote the concept of successful and sustainable environmental management there is the need to develop a robust and practical framework to accommodate value judgements relating to each of the tenets. Although, as originally presented, the tenets relate specifically to management measures, they may also be applied directly to a specific development or activity. This paper examines the application of the tenets in both of these contexts, and considers their incorporation into an assessment tool to help visualise and quantify issues of sustainability.
Traditional simulation software that supports management decisions is configured and run by experienced scientists. However, it is often criticised for its lack of interactivity, not only in the application of decisions but also in the display of results. This paper presents the simulation interface of software with management strategy evaluation capabilities and its capacity to enable resource managers to learn about water quality management as evaluated in a workshop setting. The software ‘MSE Tool’ is not intended to produce definitive real-world advice but provides a test-bed for managers to interactively design strategies and explore the complexities inherent to water quality management using a simple, yet effective, user interface. MSE Tool has been used in a pilot application that simulated the effects of management strategies applied in catchments and their effects on riverine, estuarine and marine water quality in South East Queensland, Australia. The approach and the software are suitable for reuse in other management strategy evaluation projects.
In this paper, we examine the extent, range, and diversity of noncommercial wild ocean seafood subsistence harvests among commercial operators in Washington and California, USA and test the relationship between subsistence drivers and market behavior. Analyzing data from Pacific Fisheries Information Network between 1990 and 2010, we show that over 17 million kg of fish and shellfish were kept for personal use. We used general additive models to examine patterns in proportion of personal use versus price for the top 10 species retained over the 20-year period for each of the three population groups: Washington commercial tribal (indigenous) fishing operators, Washington commercial nontribal operators, and California commercial fishing operators. Out of the 26 species-price relationships tested, only one fits the market relationship with statistical significance and the model failed to predict personal use patterns for any of the other species. We conclude that market sensitivity is not a reliable predictor for subsistence behavior. Although a nominal figure in the overall seafood catch, the presence of subsistence practices among 21st century market-based commercial fishing operators reveals a more diverse array of economic systems than previously imagined. We suggest that alternative economies, including subsistence and associated community share systems, function to improve human wellbeing and strengthen community resilience by increasing food security and community food systems, engaging in a quality of life practice, and supporting social networks through seafood gifting and sharing.
Uncertain drivers of pollution hinder long-term planning of management of aquatic ecosystems. This paper presents a framework for adjusting optimal water protection in the long term when the true trend in nutrient loading is unknown to the decision maker but can be gradually learned by monitoring stochastic nutrient loads. The economic impacts of an unknown trend consist of (i) the damage caused by the worsened state of the sea, (ii) the cost of nutrient abatement to counter the development and (iii) the adjustment costs caused by uncertainty and imperfect learning. An integrated assessment model is designed and calibrated for quantitative results pertaining to the uncertain impacts of climate change on nutrient input to the Baltic Sea. Under certainty, the net economic impacts from the currently anticipated climate change are 15.0 billion euros, of which 23% comes from welfare losses caused by aggravated eutrophication and 77% from increased abatement costs. The expected adjustment costs due to uncertain future development range from 90 million euros in the case of adaptive management based on Bayesian learning to as much as 7960 million euros in the case of an extreme variant of inadaptive management based on constant abatement levels. If adaptive management is adopted, there is no need to account for future climate change when planning the current abatement targets.
The paper provides an overview of linear generator development and testing experience of three different prototype solutions applicable for small-scale wave energy converters. The research was focused on wave power utilization in the Baltic Sea – basin of relatively low wave energy conditions. Developed technical solutions have been tested for their applicability and efficiency in small scale pilot cases. The presented concepts are based on developed linear generator. The unique arrangement of the pairs of permanent magnets and ferromagnetic cores between them was used in order to achieve better inductive properties of a magnetic field and as result, fewer materials were used and more electric power was generated. The developed engine was assessed against three concepts: (1) engine embedded in the stand-alone device in an almost water isolated floating carrier; (2) attached to a Single Point Mooring Buoy providing an additional source of energy for marine navigation signs; and (3) attached to the sea-wards looking pier in order to provide an illumination. Newly developed technical concept, such as a small-scale, versatile, low-cost and high capacity linear generator, and proposed installation solutions may open opportunities for wave energy utilization also in the regions of low wave energy such as the Baltic Sea.
Fisheries scientists are increasingly concerned about changes in vital rates caused by environmental change and fishing impacts. Demographic parameters representing individual growth, maturity, mortality, and recruitment have previously been documented to change over decadal time scales. However, there has been relatively little comparison regarding which vital rates cause relatively greater or lesser impacts on commonly used fisheries management targets. We therefore use a life table (based on age-structured assessment models) to explore the sensitivity of fishing mortality, spawning biomass, and catch targets to changes in parameters representing growth, mortality, recruitment, and maturation rates for three representative life histories representing long-, medium-, and short-lived species. The elasticity analysis indicates that demographic changes can result in substantial variation in fisheries management targets, but that changes in mortality rates are particularly important for spawning biomass and catch targets while maturity and recruitment compensation are also important for fishing mortality targets. We conclude by discussing the importance of improved data repositories to address covariation among maturity, growth, and mortality parameters.
In the gardening approach for reef restoration, coral stocks are farmed in underwater nurseries (phase I) prior to their transplantation onto degraded reefs (phase II). The phase I aspects were already evaluated in the literature, but very little is known about the phase II outcomes. Assessing phase II feasibility, we transplanted 554 nursery-farmed colonies of two branching species (Stylophora pistillata, Pocillopora damicornis) onto five denuded knolls in Eilat (Red Sea). The performance of the transplants was compared for 17 months with 76 natal colonies and 217 colonies maintained at the coral-nursery. At the natural reef, rates of full/partial mortalities, detachment and fish herbivory were considerably higher than the nursery values. While corallivory on Pocillopora transplants was comparable to that observed in natal colonies, herbivory on Stylophora transplants increased 2.2 fold compared to natal controls. Their survivorship was similar to the survivorship observed in natal colonies in the 9 months post transplantation, but was 30% higher after 17 months. In contrast, no enhanced mortality was documented in Pocillopora transplants throughout the entire period. The detachment levels of the Stylophora and Pocillopora transplants were 3 and 10 times higher, respectively, than those observed in natal colonies, and the growth rates of the transplants were identical to the rates observed in the nursery control groups. Transplants showed a 2.5–3.3 fold increase in colonial ecological-volumes, resulting in enhanced acquired space/habitats for coral-dwelling species like Trapezia, Alpheus, Spirobranchus and Lithophaga. The successful integration of farmed transplants in Eilat’s degraded reef and their provision of new ecological niches for reef-associated fauna, coupled with economic assessments, indicate that transplantation of farmed corals is an easy, cost-effective mean to counteract degradation of coral reefs. Results also imply that the selection of coral species for reef restoration should take into consideration their autogenic/allogenic engineering properties, particularly if the aims are to restore the whole reef community, rather than simply focus on coral coverage.
Dams are a major contributor to the historic decline and current low abundance of diadromous fish. We developed a population viability analysis to assess demographic effects of dams on diadromous fish within a river system and demonstrated an application of the model with Atlantic salmon in the Penobscot River, Maine. We used abundance and distribution of wild- and hatchery-origin adult salmon throughout the watershed as performance metrics. Salmon abundance, distribution to upper reaches of the Penobscot watershed, and the number and proportion of wild-origin fish in the upper reaches of the Penobscot watershed increased when dams, particularly mainstem dams, were removed or passage efficiency was increased. Salmon abundance decreased as indirect latent mortality per dam was increased. Salmon abundance increased as marine or freshwater survival rates were increased, but the increase in abundance was larger when marine survival was increased than when freshwater survival was increased. Without hatchery supplementation, salmon abundance equalled zero with low marine and freshwater survival but increased when marine and freshwater survival rates were increased. Models, such as this one, that incorporate biological, environmental, and functional parameters can be used to predict ecological responses of fish populations and can help evaluate and prioritize management and restoration actions for diadromous fish.