Methodological considerations on European marine ecosystem assessments with
Methodological considerations on European marine ecosystem assessments with a focus on services Workshop on Mapping and Assessment of Ecosystems and their Services (MAES) in the marine environment European Commission, DG ENV, Brussels, 19 June 2013 European Environment Agency (EEA) and European Topic Centre on Inland, Coastal and Marine Waters (ETC/ICM) Presentation by Eva Royo Gelabert and Johnny Reker 1 EEA marine ecosystem assessment work EEA develops marine ecosystem assessments with the aim to: Improve our own State of the Environment (SoE) assessments by bringing an ecosystemic dimension into them, e.g. SoE Report 2015 Support others working on this topic, e.g. EU Member States in the context of:
2 The EU 2020 Biodiversity Strategy/WG MAES, e.g. analytical framework, marine pilot MSFD implementation MAES conceptual framework 3 Ideal MAES at marine (sub) region level? From conceptual framework to MAES marine assessment (ecosystem state) Map human uses & land-based pollution (pressures) => 33 datasets Nutrients Cables Shipping
Cumulative human impacts Link activitypressureimpact? Expert judgement (53) Map ecological features for region => 28 datasets Harbour porpoise 4 Aphotic mud Cod Source: HARMONY project, HELCOM HOLAS is similar
Needs and gaps for wider application Needs: Mapped ecosystem components/features as surrogates for ecosystems Mapped activities & pressures cumulative assessed into an Index Mapped cumulative impacts on the ecosystems into an Index High expert judgment demand (people & time) for validation Willingness to share and harmonise information Link to ecosystem services (literature-based possible) Link to MSFD/GES Ds (e.g. UK BAU study for MSFD Art 8.1.c) Gaps: Consistent & coherent modelled seabed mapping available at European level from EUSeaMap but not for all 4 marine regions in full until 2014 No consistent & coherent mapping of pelagic ecosystems at European level No coherent mapping of activities & pressures available at European level MS reporting not harmonised coherent regional knowledge is project based 5 Current progress
European-wide application not yet possible (but EEA is considering it) So - in parallel an assessment that is: Simpler and still DPSIR based Qualitative and not mapped Based on information that is shared by the 4 MSFD marine regions (i.e. European level) Not using the MSFD info yet (extracting & analysing it now) Outcome: State and trend of marine ecosystem services directly (where possible) or indirectly (via ecosystem state) Making literature-based assumptions & expert judgment => Results would have varying degrees of reliability 6 Framework for European assessment of marine ecosystem services 3 levels Starting point for Level 1 EEA Biodiversity Baseline 2010 (based on Art. 17 Habitats Directive) This included an overview of the state of Ecosystem services in the EU
in a RUBICODE-type matrix, which did not cover marine ecosystems 8 DPS(I) elements and matrix cells Matrix showing status of marine ecosystem services (rows) per marine region (columns) presented as single cell entries, including 5 DPS(I) assessment elements (other presentations, e.g. UK NEA, also being considered). Filling in the matrix => 3 preliminary state and trend marine ecosystem services assessment tests in an iterative process refining methodology: Wild marine fish populations (provisioning service) Maintaining nursery populations and habitats (regulation and maintenance) Physical and experiential interactions (cultural) 9 Draft general 8-step methodology for Level 1 - To show what and how to put things together 1
10 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 Step 2: Identifying potential indicators and/or proxies for the ecosystem services to be assessed Not compiling all available data/info first, but establishing ecological
linkages (supply side) in a DPS(I) context: How the service is generated (link to natural stock or underlying ecosystem structures, processes and functions) How the service is used/impacted (drivers and pressures on the service or the ecosystem components generating it/environment) All potential indicators or proxies to measure STATE, PRESSURE, and future direction (DRIVERS) are identified. Noting that: There are very few indicators providing a direct measure of the ecosystem service flow (e.g. fish biomass) => Service assessment 11 Proxies can illustrate the state and trend of state of marine ecosystem components (e.g. structures) underpinning the services, but do not measure the services (flow) directly => Ecosystem assessment Step 2: Zoom in on linkages 12
(proxy situation) Step 2: Zoom in on indicators/proxies Driver Indicator/Proxy Demand Human population development, EU population development, worlds food market prices, per capita consumption, fish price Fish prices (catch value), price subsidies Fuel (oil) price, wages, repair and maintenance, subsides Capital costs, depreciation Revenue Operational costs Other costs
Investments in infrastructure Policy Fisheries management Technological development Number of new fishing harbours build, other investments on infrastructure Political decisions, (e.g. subsidies are decided here) Management, regulations, control and inspection Technological development rate (tech. creeping) Pressure Indicator/Proxy Fishing effort stock level, related to Fishing mortality F/FMSY sustainable F Fishing effort Fleet size (vessels, engine power, Tonnage) Fishing effort
Days at sea, actual fishing time Fishing effort pressure on stocks Catch/biomass ratio Fishing effort selectivity Gears (type, numbers) State (not all listed) Example: Wild marine fish populations Several proxies/indicators are possible per DPS(I) category Indicator/Proxy (not all listed) Quantitative indicator of the status of the SSB/SSBMSY stocks
Development of the State Commercial catch per unit effort data Development of the State Survey catch per unit effort data Health and production potential of the Size distributions of catches (large fish index LFI) ecosystem Current status of the State Spawning stock biomass Production potential Recruitment (absolute or index) Health and production potential of the Mean trophic level of catch in commercial/survey data ecosystem Health the ecosystem and food web Proportion fish larger than the mean size at first sexual maturation Use as many as possible for good characterisation (complementary) Will need
aggregation 13 Step 3: Selecting indicators and/or proxies for the assessment on the basis of data/information availability Compiling data/information now that we know what is needed and how it fits together => Many issues!! Lowest common denominator when covering the 4 marine regions and still there are blanks (but no S & P => No assessment) When no indicators => Most specific proxies preferred (closest to the service flow) European level availability is the entry point as implied by the Strategy: Aggregated reported data/info => More abundant H From existing EU-level assessments (mandatory reporting for EU ENV directives) and related EEA products (e.g. 2012 Water assessments/WFD) H Assessment products from other international organizations (RSCs, ICES) Disaggregated reported data => Less abundant 14
H EEAs SoE reporting (voluntary) H Data from Eurostat, FAO, etc. Step 3: Zoom in on European data/information 1/2 Using existing EU-level assessment info Pros Level playing field in principle Different directives => Different elements of ecosystem integrity - in principle National data aggregation and marine region for HD (only) Assessment status consistently classified at EU level for STATE (only) Cons Politically negotiated info v science-based
assessment Too aggregated at times => Unusable MSFD reported info not yet extracted and analysed at European level High variability on what is reported Data not always harmonised nor aggregated at marine region level No EU status classification for PRESSURE Level playing field => Lowest common denominator => Service indicators/proxies could be too general (not close to flow) Info insufficient for DPS(I), D & P poorest Assessment units can vary a lot Not much spatially supported info 15 Step 3: Zoom in on European data/information 2/2 Conclusions on using existing EU-level assessment info
They are the bulk of the existing information => Need to make best use of them => A methodology is needed on how to put the pieces together KEY QUESTION : How far can info from existing EU-level assessments be taken into a European ecosystem (services) assessment? (ETC BD & HSCS pilot also thinking about this for the HD) EEA & ETCs still working on it => Important to show reliability of outcomes as well as limitations, gaps, assumptions and uncertainties of the assessment approach Other data/info is needed anyway to allow for DPS(I) => Own challenges when trying to find and use it (e.g. aggregation rules, status 16 Step 5: Developing and using assessment thresholds and aggregating data or proxies Example: Using EU levelassessment info for STATE proxies for Maintaining nursery populations and habitats WFD not there (RBD info too aggregated and no SoE data)
MSFD is a place holder Level 1 to 2 aggregation for HD exists already but needs rethinking (weighting) Status classification: Big assumption!! => Outcomes of the different assessment systems are harmonized => Boundary between and Not Level 1 to 2Good & Level 2 needs Good should be the same for each Directive/policy within a common unit aggregation rulesspatial (OOAO v (to weighting v expert judgment) be defined)
17 General conclusion &Next steps Methodological development very much work in progress At this stage, the process information (what and how) is what IS important (and NOT the results/matrix) => To support others doing this work at any scale by: Illustrating issues encountered Justifying decisions taken Lessons learnt , e.g. DeveIop assessment approach first, then find the data!! EEA/ETCs will produce: ETC ICM Report on Development of European marine ecosystem assessments (end 2013) => A repository to be used as contribution to other products (e.g. EEA Reports, WG MAES) 18 Technical Report on Ecosystem assessment (methodological, early
Next steps- Key one : Link to MSFD!!! Data/information Use MS reporting on MSFD Article 8 via the knowledge base being developed by EEA/ETC ICM (October 2013) to support the MSFD Baseline Assessment 2014` (autumn 2014) Data/info integrated into methodology (already includes place holders) Response (closing the DPSIR cycle by developing the R) Link marine ecosystem services to GES Descriptors/indicators => MSFD acts at the level of the ecosystems (components or features) or pressures not on the services directly (exception is D3) Ecological functioning is the basis for service provision => GES = Good ecological functioning? = Continued service provision? 19 Acknowledgements European Topic Centre Inland, Coastal & Marine waters (ETC ICM) => SYKE (Finnish Environment Institute) leads this work ETC Biological Diversity (ETC BD)
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