Category Archives: Policy

Putting a historical plankton dataset to work for marine policy challenges

In marine ecology, it is widely accepted that monitoring data spanning long time-scales are essential for understanding ecosystem change, especially for the detection of community shifts linked to climate variability. Data spanning multiple decades are also essential for biodiversity policy, … Continue reading

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Science-policy collaboration is the key to sustainable management of Japanese marine ecosystems 海洋生態系の持続可能な管理に向けた科学と政策の協働

During the week of October 28, 2018, hundreds of top marine scientists are meeting at the annual PICES conference in Yokohama to discuss the latest research on Pacific marine ecosystems and the implications for their sustainable management. As many of … Continue reading

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Can Northeast Atlantic pelagic habitat indicators be applied to the Arctic?

Northeast Atlantic marine waters have a long history of collaborative management, with OSPAR the cooperative mechanism for marine environmental management in the Northeast Atlantic. OSPAR is collaboratively implementing ecosystem-based management in this region to meet the EU Marine Strategy Framework Directive … Continue reading

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What makes a good pelagic habitat?

The Convention on Biological Diversity (1992) and the more recent EU Marine Strategy Framework Directive (2008) require the conservation, maintenance, sustainable use, and/or improvement of biodiversity. However, little scientific research has been done into how to characterise and manage pelagic … Continue reading

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Decreasing primary productivity linked to decreased fishery production – an opportunity for management?

As the ocean’s major primary producers, phytoplankton are the base of the marine food web, with changes to their abundance, biomass, and community composition resonating upwards through zooplankton to fish, seabirds, and cetaceans. Our understanding of the direct relationships between … Continue reading

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A ‘strong and stable’ marine ecosystem?

Long-term monitoring time-series are most important during times of political uncertainty such as Brexit, but it is these times they are most at risk.  The UK marine environment faces an uncertain future. Cumulative pressures from human activities are being placed … Continue reading

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Why do policy makers need plankton taxonomy?

It might not seem intuitive, but plankton taxonomy is critically important to informing marine policy and conservation. At its most basic level, biodiversity is an inventory of the organisms present in an ecosystem. The recognition and identification of these organisms … Continue reading

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Implementing the MSFD in Europe – an OSPAR COBAM workshop

In May I attended the OSPAR Intersessional Correspondence Group for Coordinated Biodiversity and Monitoring (COBAM) workshop in Marseille, France. OSPAR COBAM is responsible for leading development and operationalisation of indicators for marine pelagic biodiversity in Europe. The workshop focused on … Continue reading

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Reflections on the science-policy interface

As a first year PhD student in Plymouth University’s Plankton and Policy research group, I was fortunate enough to attend a workshop run by OSPAR, about the integration of different biodiversity indicators into holistic ecosystem assessments. The workshop was part … Continue reading

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Time-series datasets are crucial to delivering Good Environmental Status

We are on a mission in Europe to achieve Good Environmental Status (GES) for our seas (Who cares about the MSFD?). As with many marine policy or conservation efforts, good data are critical to success. When it comes to GES, … Continue reading

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