Scottish findings presented at ICES Annual Science Conference 2015
Bringing the ecosystem services concept into marine management decisions – Scottish findings presented at ICES Annual Science Conference 2015
The ICES Annual Science Conference 2015 took place in Copenhagen, Denmark from 21-25 September. The biggest marine science conference in the Northern Atlantic welcomed around 700 international scientists, policy- and decision- makers, those who work with marine ecosystems, stakeholders, and representatives from interested organisations and industry, to join discussions on science for sustainable seas. This year, there were 20 theme sessions, including one on “Marine spatial planning and fisheries: A stock-take on approaches, examples and future needs”. Outputs from the NERC-funded project “Corporate Participatory Assessment of Ecosystem Services for the marine renewable energy industry: CORPORATES” where presented by Dr Jacqueline Tweddle.
The interdisciplinary project developed a process to promote more integrated decision making using Ecosystem Service (ES) concepts in marine management. It involved a series of workshops around a case study in the Firth of Forth with marine renewable energy industry and regulatory/advisory partners, together with a range of stakeholders, including fishers, NGOs, recreationalists, and local government. The process involved knowledge exchange about ecological processes underpinning ES, mapping of different types of activities and ES benefits, participatory system modelling, and deliberation on future policy impacts on different sectors, including fishing. This process built a shared understanding between developing industries and existing stakeholders, such as fishers, of interlinkages and interactions between different ES, benefits, activities, and economic and cultural values, reducing risk of conflict and facilitating planning of marine spaces in the face of uncertainties.
Submitted by Andronikos Kafas.