Climate change is driving the tropicalization of temperate ecosystems by shifting the range edges of numerous species poleward. Over the past few decades, mangroves have rapidly displaced salt marshes near multiple poleward mangrove range limits, including in northeast Florida. It is uncertain whether such mangrove expansions are due to anthropogenic climate change or natural climate variability. We combined historical accounts from books, personal journals, scientific articles, logbooks, photographs, and maps with climate data to show that the current ecotone between mangroves and salt marshes in northeast Florida has shifted between mangrove and salt marsh dominance at least 6 times between the late 1700s and 2017 due to decadal-scale fluctuations in the frequency and intensity of extreme cold events. Model projections of daily minimum temperature from 2000 through 2100 indicate an increase in annual minimum temperature by 0.5 °C/decade. Thus, although recent mangrove range expansion should indeed be placed into a broader historical context of an oscillating system, climate projections suggest that the recent trend may represent a more permanent regime shift due to the effects of climate change.
The distributions of migratory species in the ocean span local, national and international jurisdictions. Across these ecologically interconnected regions, migratory marine species interact with anthropogenic stressors throughout their lives. Migratory connectivity, the geographical linking of individuals and populations throughout their migratory cycles, influences how spatial and temporal dynamics of stressors affect migratory animals and scale up to influence population abundance, distribution and species persistence. Population declines of many migratory marine species have led to calls for connectivity knowledge, especially insights from animal tracking studies, to be more systematically and synthetically incorporated into decision-making. Inclusion of migratory connectivity in the design of conservation and management measures is critical to ensure they are appropriate for the level of risk associated with various degrees of connectivity. Three mechanisms exist to incorporate migratory connectivity into international marine policy which guides conservation implementation: site-selection criteria, network design criteria and policy recommendations. Here, we review the concept of migratory connectivity and its use in international policy, and describe the Migratory Connectivity in the Ocean system, a migratory connectivity evidence-base for the ocean. We propose that without such collaboration focused on migratory connectivity, efforts to effectively conserve these critical species across jurisdictions will have limited effect.
Marine management interventions are increasingly being implemented with the explicit goal of rebuilding ocean ecosystems, but early responses may begin with alterations in ecological interactions preceding detectable changes in population-level characteristics. To establish a baseline from which to monitor the effects of spatial protection on reef fish trophic ecology and track future ecosystem-level changes, we quantified temperate reef fish densities, size, biomass, diets and isotopic signatures at nine sites nested within two fished and one five-year old marine protected area (MPA) on the northwest coast of Canada. We calculated rockfish (Sebastes spp.) community and species-specific niche breadth for fished and protected areas based on δ13C and δ15N values. We found that rockfish community niche width was greater inside the MPA relative to adjacent fished reefs due to an expanded nitrogen range, possibly reflecting early changes in trophic interactions following five years of spatial protection. Our data also demonstrated that the MPA had a positive effect on the δ15N signature of rockfish (i.e., trophic position), but the effect of rockfish length on its own was not well-supported. In addition, we found a positive interaction between rockfish length and δ15N signature, such that δ15N signatures of rockfish caught within the MPA increased more rapidly with body size than those caught in fished areas. Differences in rockfish size structure and biomass among fished and unfished areas were not clearly evident. Species of rockfish and lingcod varied in trophic and size responses, indicating that life-history traits play an important role in predicting MPA effects. These results may suggest early changes in trophic behavior of slow-growing rockfish due to predation risk by faster growing higher trophic level predators such as lingcod inside MPAs established on temperate reefs. Consequently, spatial protection may restore both the trophic and behavioral roles of previously fished consumers earlier and in measurable ways sooner than observable changes in abundance and size.
Reef fish resources provide numerous ecosystem services in the northern Gulf of Mexico (nGOM) large marine ecosystem. Artificial reefs (ARs) have been distributed across the nGOM in attempts to enhance reef fish habitat and increase fishery productivity, but few data exist to distinguish ecological from fishery functions of ARs compared to natural reefs (NRs), particularly at the regional scale. Therefore, we conducted remotely operated vehicle surveys of reef fish communities at 47 reef sites within a ∼20,000 km2 area of the nGOM shelf and tested the effect of reef type (NR versus AR), depth (≤35 or >35 m), relief (≤2 m or >2 m), and complexity (low or high) on fish diversity and community structure as well as trophic guild- and species-specific densities. Twenty-one species were present at >20%, nine at >50%, and three at >75% of study reefs. Fishery species (i.e., Lutjanus campechanus, Seriola dumerili, and Rhomboplites aurorubens) and invasive Pterois volitans were frequently observed (>50% of sites) or numerically dominant, especially at ARs. Main effects did not significantly affect the presence of specific species or trophic guilds, but interactions among factors significantly affected species- and trophic guild-specific densities. Our results indicate that effects of habitat characteristics on fish communities are more nuanced than previously described. Fish communities are moderately similar at the majority of sites but specific habitat characteristics can interact to dramatically affect densities of some species, particularly those that depend on complex structures for refuge. Simple ARs tend to concentrate high densities of a few important fishery species with low densities of other small demersal reef fishes. Complex NRs with high relief also support high densities of planktivorous fishery species but greatly increase densities of small, demersal, non-fishery species that directly utilize complex reef structure for refuge.
In response to increasing greenhouse gases emissions, the global climate is undoubtedly changing. As a consequence of rising temperatures, mean sea level also shows an increasing tendency globally, still, uncertainties in relation to its regional specific trends can be identified. Besides that, uncertainties also remain regarding regional and local coastal response to sea level rise. Coastal geomorphology (topography, bathymetry, and sediment texture) plays a relevant role, especially in defining how sediment exchanges occur in the active zone, thus inducing different morphodynamic readjustments. In this context, this study is focused on projecting the future coastline position for the years 2040 and 2100 along three sectors at Hermenegildo Beach, and on investigating the influence of site-specific geomorphological characteristics, urbanization and the presence of hard coastal protection structures on the coastal response under accelerated rates of sea level rise using a stochastic morpho-kinematic model, the Random Shoreface Translation Model. Model outputs as coastal recession distances were submitted to a Kruskal-Wallis test to verify if there were significant differences in coastal recession 1) amongst the three sectors (standard own topography and bathymetry); 2) due to changes in dune topography only; and 3) due to the presence or absence of hard coastal protection structures at the urbanized sector. Overall, the results indicate that the urbanized area presented the highest recession distance amongst the sectors. Differences in dune heights between the northern and southern dune field sectors at Hermenegildo Beach do not significantly influence the mean coastal retreat. On analyzing mean coastal recession results for the urbanized sector, with and without hard coastal protection structures, we conclude that the presence of urbanization and hard structures on the active dune and beach contributed to a maximum increase of 13.52% in mean coastal recession distance and that it significantly (P < 0.01) affects coastline recession in comparison to that in the case of a non-structured dune field for both the time horizons considered (2040, 2100). The results presented here provide a basis for future planning and management at the area, pointing out to the increased erosion risk caused by the existence of an artificially structured shoreline.
Marine megafauna (elasmobranchs, marine mammals, turtles, and seabirds) are important ecologically and economically because many species often occupy upper trophic levels as adults and are essential for marine-based tourism in many areas of the world. This group of species is also heavily impacted by fishing because most have late sexual maturity, longevity, and low reproductive output, which affects their ability to recover from depletion. In Galapagos, marine megafauna species are protected from fishing throughout the marine reserve and are the main attraction for marine-based tourism, helping generate millions of dollars in revenue annually. Despite their importance in the archipelago, these species are being caught as bycatch in the multiple artisanal longlining projects that have been carried out since the implementation of the reserve in 1998. Longlining was originally proposed as a way of redirecting fishing effort from the severely depleted coastal-demersal species to pelagic fish such as yellowfin tuna and swordfish. Although all these projects have resulted in high bycatch of megafauna, longline fishing projects have continued without independent scientific studies to evaluate their impact, largely due to poor objective definition, data collection, and enforcement. To fill in this knowledge gap, we analyzed data of the fifth experimental longline fishing project undertaken in 2012–2013 to describe the fishery, identify variables affecting the composition and quantity of bycatch, and suggest mitigation strategies. This experimental project had twelve vessels, which deployed 42,007 hooks catching 4893 individuals of 33 species, mostly yellowfin tuna and swordfish. Of those, 16 species were protected megafauna, particularly blacktip sharks (Carcharhinus limbatus) and oceanic manta (Mobula birostris). These species were regularly captured during the two seasons and in the three bioregions that occur in the archipelago, suggesting little potential to mitigate their catch. As an alternative, we identified 14 hotspots where yellowfin tuna and swordfish could be harvested in large numbers sustainably through more selective fishing techniques such as pole fishing, a method that is also more economical for artisanal fishers. In an archipelago where the main economic activity is marine wildlife tourism, the implementation of an extractive and unselective activity such as pelagic longing fishing should be avoided to ensure the sustainability of the Galapagos marine ecosystem and its booming tourism industry.
Tropical coastal environment represents one of the most dynamic and vital interfaces on Earth, at the boundary between land and sea. It encompasses some of the most diverse and productive habitats. These habitats include natural ecosystems, managed ecosystems besides major urban centres. The existence of these ecosystems is dependent on the land-sea interconnection and dynamic flow of energy and matter. At the same time, the coastal region has long been under stress from over-exploitation and mismanagement. The increasing pace of human population and developmental activities in the tropical coastal region has altered the functionality of coastal ecosystems and endangered several flora and fauna that threaten the livelihood of people who depend on them. In addition, the looming spectre of sea level rise associated with the effect of global warming presents a new and potentially far more dangerous threat to this region. This necessitates suitable coastal zone management plan to conserve and derive sustainable benefit from the coastal ecosystems. With this background an overview of tropical coastal countries, its demographic features, natural resources, coastal ecosystems, and its services to the human society are discussed in this chapter. Brief account on effect of human activities and climate change on coastal region sourced from different literatures provides useful information to the researchers, students, and policymakers.
The oil spill accidents may drastically impact the environment and ecosystem at intertidal zones. The spilled oil will penetrate the sediments and accumulate to cause lethal or sublethal effects on the benthic invertebrates. An M-BACI experiment was manipulated in situ to assess the ecological responses of benthic macrofauna to different degrees of diesel oil spill. Both biotic and abiotic parameters were studied for 126 days, subjected to both “pulse” and “press” oil contaminations. The content of aliphatic hydrocarbons (displayed as ratios of n-C17/Pr and n-C18/Ph) slightly dropped then continuously existed in the sediment during the experiment time. The macrofaunal assemblage structures were dramatically altered in species number, abundance and biomass. In general, it takes longer time for the macrofauna assemblages to recover under high concentration oil spill than that under low concentration. Our results highlight the diversified strategies for survival and recolonization among dominant species, which distinguish themselves between: i) tolerant species, ii) opportunistic species, and iii) equilibrium species.
The technology-driven application of big data is expected to assist policymaking towards sustainable development; however, the relevant literature has not addressed human welfare under climate change, which limits the understanding of climate change impacts on human societies. We present the first application of unique mobile phone network data to evaluate the current nation-wide human welfare of coastal tourism at Japanese beaches and project the value change using the four climate change scenarios. The results show that the projected national economic value loss rates are more significant than the projected national physical beach loss rates. Our findings demonstrate regional differences in recreational values: most southern beaches with larger current values would disappear, while the current small values of the northern beaches would remain. These changes imply that the ranks of the beaches, based on economic values, would enable policymakers to discuss management priorities under climate change.
In this study, we assessed plastic accumulation in marine sediments due to finfish aquaculture using floating net-pens. We studied plastic concentrations around three fish farms located at the Mediterranean coastline of Spain. The macroplastic categories and abundances were determined by video monitoring, detecting the majority of elements (78%), including ropes, nets and fibres, a basket trap and a cable tie, close to the facilities, which were not exclusively linked to fish farming but also to fishing activities. Concentrations of microplastics (<5 mm) ranged from 0 to 213 particles/kg dry weight sediment with higher values in sites directly under the influence of the fish farms. Most particles (27.8%) were within the size fraction from 1.1 to 2.0 mm and fibre was the most common shape with 62.2%. The Infrared spectroscopy analysis showed that PE and PP were the predominant types of polymers analysed. In addition, changes in the enthalpy of melting (ΔHm (J/g)) and the degree of crystallinity indicate degradation of the microplastics analysed. This study shows that, in the studied fish farms, levels of microplastic pollution can be one order of magnitude lower compared to other areas suffering other anthropogenic pressures from the same or similar regions. Nevertheless, more research effort is needed to get concluding results.
Ship strikes are one of the main human-induced threats to whale survival. A variety of measures have been used or proposed to reduce collisions and subsequent mortality of whales. These include operational measures, such as mandatory speed reduction, or technical ones, such as detection tools. There is, however, a lack of a systematic approach to assessing the various measures that can mitigate the risk of ship collisions with whales. In this paper, a holistic approach is proposed to evaluate mitigation measures based on a risk assessment framework that has been adopted by the International Maritime Organization (IMO), namely the Formal Safety Assessment (FSA). Formal Safety Assessment (FSA) is “a rational and systematic process for assessing the risk related to maritime safety and the protection of the marine environment and for evaluating the costs and benefits of IMO's options for reducing these risks”. The paper conceptualizes the use of a systematic risk assessment methodology, namely the FSA, to assess measures to reduce the risk of collisions between ships and whales.
The recovery of California sea lion (Zalophus californianus) populations is an environmental success story, but it has created new challenges given their interactions with sport fisherman. Economic losses to the Commercial Passenger Fishing Vessel (CPFV) stems both from the loss of fish, as well as the costs of fuel and time spent traveling to new fishing areas to avoid pinnipeds. Management solutions require a firm understanding of the public's perceptions of an issue. To address this shortcoming, we surveyed recreational anglers' perceptions of California sea lions and conducted a content analysis of media coverage of California sea lions in Southern Californian newspapers. We found that as anglers' knowledge of California sea lions increased, their subjective knowledge of the Marine Mammal Protection Act increased as well and they were less likely to advocate the use of lethal removal to manage sea lion issues. Avid fishers were more likely to consider shooting all sea lions as acceptable, and less likely to view controls to restrict human activity from sea lion areas as favorable. Anglers that expressed negative sentiments after an interaction with sea lions while fishing were more likely to view punishing the sea lion favorably, but less likely to view exposing the sea lions to pain as favorable. Our content analysis showed that most articles were about tourism and entertainment and the majority of articles focused on negative effects to sea lions. The media's framing might obscure the successful recovery of California sea lions and flame growing management concerns with stakeholders like anglers, dock workers, and marina occupants. Our survey showed that among stakeholders, increased understanding of the animals increased understanding of the regulatory context of their recovery and repellents as a socially acceptable means of managing the conflict. Thus, we have shown that knowledge among the public and stakeholders will enhance management efforts. Conservation management professionals can influence public attitudes by interacting with the media as well as using communications strategies that highlight the ecological mechanisms behind the conflict as well as the management actions.
Changes in structure and function of coral reefs are increasingly significant and few sites in the Caribbean can tolerate local and global stress factors. Therefore, we assessed coral reef condition indicators in reefs within and outside of MPAs in the southeastern Dominican Republic, considering benthic cover as well as the composition, diversity, recruitment, mortality, bleaching, the conservation status and evolutionary distinctiveness of coral species. In general, we found that reef condition indicators (coral and benthic cover, recruitment, bleaching, and mortality) within the MPAs showed better conditions than in the unprotected area (Boca Chica). Although the comparison between the Boca Chica area and the MPAs may present some spatial imbalance, these zones were chosen for the purpose of making a comparison with a previous baseline presented. In actuality these indicators found in the MPAs have improved when compared to results from previous reports (2001) in the same reefs and others in the Caribbean. Additionally, we found no evidence of massive bleaching during the El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) of 2015. Reef-building species belonging to Orbicella species complex dominate MPAs, while small colonies of Pseudodiploria strigosa and Siderastrea siderea with low structural complexity dominate the unprotected sites. Key findings include the potential offered by MPAs as a network; our results show that a combination of MPAs protect the variation in diversity and promote the conservation of coral while maintaining historical evolution traits. This study offers an evaluation framework that considers multiple aspects of relevance in the conservation of Caribbean coral reefs, presenting a baseline of ecological indicators in the southeastern region of the Dominican Republic. It also recognizes some protected reefs in this region that can be designated as places of hope, with excellent conditions in the coral community.
The declining costs of Unoccupied Aircraft Systems (UAS, aka drones), their ease of use, and their ability to collect high resolution data from a variety of sensors has resulted in an explosion of applications across the globe. Scientists working in the marine environment are increasingly using UAS to study a variety of topics, from counting wildlife populations in remote locations to estimating the effects of storms and sea level rise on shorelines. UAS also provide transformative potential to study the ways in which humans interact with and affect marine and coastal ecosystems, but doing so presents unique ethical and legal challenges. Human subjects have property rights that must be respected and they have rights to privacy, as well as expectations of privacy and security that may extend beyond actual legal rights. Using two case studies to illustrate these challenges, we outline the legal and regulatory landscapes that scientists confront when people are their primary study subjects, and conclude with an initial set of legal best practices to guide researchers in their efforts to study human interactions with natural resources in the marine environment.
The integration of survey data in the processes of the Regional Fisheries Management Organisations is a key step for conservation of deep-sea ecosystems and sustainable exploitation of deep-sea fisheries resources, including the mitigation of by-catch and discards of cold-water corals and deep-sea sponges, both considered by FAO as vulnerable marine ecosystems (VMEs) indicator species. Information on corals and sponges from annual bottom trawl groundfish surveys in areas beyond national jurisdictions has been integrated into the “ecosystem management cycle” of the Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Organization (NAFO). Survey data have improved our knowledge on VMEs identification, distribution and extent, and has led to the proposal and implementation of conservation and management measures. These data have particular relevance to delineate and refine the boundaries of areas closed to commercial bottom fishing (14 closures), in order to prevent significant adverse impacts on VMEs, according to the mandate of United Nations General Assembly Resolution 61/105. Considering the European groundfish surveys in the NAFO Regulatory Area (high seas) as a case study, the paper presents an overview of how invertebrate catch data have been integrated into the fisheries management process as a basis to the implementation of VMEs closed areas. Fishing closures are considered effective spatial management measures to avoid by-catch and discards of cold-water corals and deep-sea sponges in commercial bottom fishing, mitigating the adverse impacts on deep-sea ecosystems.
Taiwan government proposes a national level Coastal Blue Economy Growth (CBEG) program to promote ocean-linked industries based on the concept of sustainable development. Sea farming development is considered an important aspect that needs to be promoted for the CBEG program. Generally, sea farming relies on artificial technologies, environmental improvement and resource management to increase fishery resources and to enhance fisheries productivity. Developing sea farming could contribute to the transformation of capture fisheries; it integrates the concept of Blue Economy into sustainable economic development so as to improve economic activities in fishing communities. In line with this, the Taiwan government launched the Community-Based Sea Farming (CBSF) project in 2015. The CBSF project aims to establish sea farming zones to help fishing communities achieve sustainable development. In this paper, the development process of sea farming and site selection of the CBSF project were described and the needs of local people in fishing communities around sea-farming demonstration zones were also assessed. According to findings, a framework for sea farming development is proposed. In this framework, several new sea farming-based industries can serve as the driving force to accelerate the development of fishing communities. The driving forces include developing a community-based tourism recreational industry, strengthening localized marketing of featured seafood products, combining local ecological landscapes and cultures of the fishing village to develop recreational fishery activities, and integrating seafood products with recreational tourism activities. Overall, CBSF are important tasks that warrant continuous attention for enhancing the fishing community development. The experiences and framework of promoting the Taiwan CBSF project would provide beneficial information and foundation for decision makers and natural resources managers in other areas.
Rivers transport land-based plastic waste into the ocean. Current efforts to quantify riverine plastic emission come with uncertainty as field observations are scarce. One of the challenging aspects is the lack of consistent measurement methods that allow for comparing rivers over space and time. Recent studies have shown that simple visual observations provide a robust first-order characterization of floating and superficially suspended plastic transport, both in quantity, spatiotemporal distribution and composition. For this study, we applied this method to the river Seine, France, to provide new insights in the spatiotemporal variation in riverine plastic transport. First, we studied the response of plastic flow to increased river discharge by comparing measurements taken during low flow and high flow periods. Second, we investigated the variation of riverine plastic transport over the river length to improve our understanding of the origin and fate of riverine plastics. We demonstrate that during a period with higher river discharge, plastic transport increased up to a factor ten at the observation point closest to the river mouth. This suggests that the plastic emission into the ocean from the Seine may also be considerably higher during increased discharge. Upstream of Paris plastic transport increased only with a factor 1.5, suggesting that most plastics originate from Paris or areas further downstream. With this paper we aim to shed additional light on the seasonal variation in riverine plastic transport and its distribution along the river length, which may benefit future long-term monitoring efforts and plastic pollution mitigation strategies.
Zooplankton biomass (as wet weight) was studied around marine protected islands in the tropical Atlantic Ocean. The study was based on 96 zooplankton samples collected during a 3-year period; specifically, 2010 was considered a year of thermal stress, and 2012 and 2014 were considered years without thermal stress. The analysis showed that zooplankton biomass varied significantly among protected areas, where the smallest and most isolated archipelago among the tropical islands, Saint Peter and Saint Paul Archipelago (SPSP), had approximately twice the biomass of Fernando de Noronha Archipelago (FN) and three times that of Rocas Atoll (RA). The position of SPSP near the equatorial divergence zone, the seasonal occurrences of phytoplankton blooms east of the Equator, the contribution of the productive waters that SPSP receives from the African coast under the influence of the South Equatorial Current (SEC) system and the local upwelling effect induced by the presence of the island were considered to be the factors responsible for the high pelagic productivity in this remote archipelago. Differences between day and night were also recorded. The high nocturnal biomass was considered an effect of the capture of larger-sized animals, which are considered to be strong migrators. The lowest zooplankton biomass was recorded in 2010 and was considered an apparent effect of the high sea surface temperature observed in that year. However, the interaction between spatial and interannual factors showed that, in FN and SPSP, the zooplankton biomass was lower in the year under thermal stress (2010). In contrast, RA presented a higher biomass value in this period. We suggest that this increase in zooplankton biomass is the result of the contribution of autochthonous sources (e.g., as a consequence of local physical events, such as current wakes, recorded during this period at RA and responsible for the increase in local planktonic productivity) and allochthonous sources (e.g., organisms supplied by FN via the zonal current).
Marine litter is a worldwide problem. It impacts negatively marine environment, organisms, human health and coastal communities. In this research, abundance, composition and sources of marine litter (macro-debris > 2.5 cm) and beach cleanliness were assessed for three beaches in the central Croatian Adriatic Sea. Mean abundance for the studied region was 3.35 items/m2 and the highest recorded CCI value was 150. Most of the collected litter was made of artificial polymer material (93.86%), and main sources of litter were shoreline activities representing (31.68% of the total sample) and fishing and aquaculture representing (12.66% of the total sample). Land-based and sea-based sources accounted for 32.76% and 15.16%, respectively. Results from the present study provide another evidence of marine litter problem and high presence of plastic items in the marine environment of the Adriatic Sea. Presence of litter from different countries shows the internationality of marine litter problem which can only be solved by international collaborations and partnerships as well as by taking individual responsibility of all. Presence of the short-life single-use plastic items and the problems associated with them have been recognized in this study as most of the items collected were single-use items. High abundance of these items indicates not only their large use in everyday life, but also the lack of awareness of the general public about the environmental problem they cause. Moreover, the results obtained in this research imply the need for better waste management systems.
YOUMARES 9, a conference from and for YOUng MArine RESearchers, is well-established and an format to present current research topics to early career scientists. This international conference represented a platform for early career scientists in Germany, Europe, and worldwide to build up a scientific network. At large congresses, young scientists often do not have the opportunity to present themselves. YOUMARES 9 was important, giving young researchers a place to discuss their research and engage in discussions on important research questions early in their scientific career. YOUMARES 9 was organized by master’s students and doctoral candidates as a bottom-up conference. The bottom-up concept of YOUMARES 9 was professionalized by a core organizational team and a local team provided by the host. The participants of the organizational team learned to organize conferences, communicate with different stakeholders, and moderate sessions or lead workshops. As a result, the team learned self-confidence and strengthened their key competencies besides their scientific work. These kinds of conferences are indeed a very good way of supporting young researchers in their starting careers. Young researchers learn to present their work and discuss it with peers and network. To sum up, all participants learn the parts of “how to do research” that take place outside of the lab. During the conference, there is a spirit of curiosity, interest, and energy of young researchers and an open-minded atmosphere. It was great to be the host of YOUMARES 9 under the theme “The oceans: our research, our future” from 11 to 14 September 2018 at the Carl von Ossietzky University of Oldenburg, ICBM. It was a pleasure to welcome over 300 participants to Oldenburg. Originally, YOUMARES 9 started with a zero budget, but with support from various sponsors from science and industry, it ended up being a prestigious conference. As a future perspective, such conferences would be an essential link between industry, institutions, and universities to provide young scientists the best possibilities for future careers inside and outside the universities. These proceedings, which include a peer-reviewed process, are an excellent summary of the research activities of young marine scientists and document the actual challenges in marine and social sciences. This book is the second that was published open access with Springer in the context of YOUMARES.