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  • 1.
    Havenhand, Jon
    et al.
    Perfomers of environmental monitoring, Universities, University of Gothenburg, GU, Sven Lovén Centre for Marine Sciences.
    Dahlgren, Thomas
    Perfomers of environmental monitoring, Universities, University of Gothenburg, GU, Sven Lovén Centre for Marine Sciences.
    Havsplanering med hänsyn till klimatförändringar: An Assessment of the Theoretical Basis, and Practical Options, for Incorporating the Effects of Projected Climate Change in Marine Spatial Planning of Swedish Waters2017Report (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Global climate change is causing widespread shifts in species distributions, community composition, and ecosystem services (Pereira et al., 2010, Pereira et al., 2012). In the oceans, warming is shifting species distributions toward cooler waters (Molinos et al., 2016, Pinsky et al., 2013) and stressing sessile species in-situ (e.g. coral bleaching (Donner et al., 2017), while acidification is already impacting some cold-water species (Manno et al., 2017) and threatening many other species and ecosystems (Pecl et al., 2017, Sunday et al., 2017). Patterns of climate change at regional scales are far less well understood, not least because global climate signals interact with regional processes to produce more complex patterns. Nonetheless, there are many relevant data and regional climate models for Scandinavia that have addressed these issues. Recent analysis shows that over the last 150 years or so the Baltic1 has warmed by 1-2 degrees (Meier et al., 2014), and there have been marked shifts in the seasonality of Baltic waters, with earlier onset (and longer periods) of warm temperatures over the last 4 decades (Kahru et al., 2016). Results from a comprehensive suite of projections from regional atmosphere:ocean models (Meier et al., 2012a, Meier, 2015, SMHI, 2017) show even greater future change, with average additional warming by 2-4°C average additional freshening by up to 2 salinity units, and average decrease in deep oxygen concentrations by 0.5-4 mg O2.ml-1 by the end of this century (Meier et al., 2012c, Neumann, 2010, Vuorinen et al., 2015). These models also project that changes will be highly heterogeneous over scales of 10’s to 100’s of kilometers. Model projections indicate with a relatively high degree of certainty that 5080% of winter sea ice in the northern Baltic will be lost by the end of the century (Andersson et al., 2015).  These shifts in seasonality and climate are already having effects on some species in Swedish coastal waters (Appelqvist et al., 2015, Appelqvist & Havenhand, 2016), and are projected to have even greater impacts in the coming decades (Meier et al., 2012b). Notable among these projections are freshening-driven shifts in the range boundaries of key species such as eelgrass, blue mussels, and cod (Vuorinen et al., 2015; and see Fig 1), substantial ice-loss driven reductions in populations of ringed seal (Sundqvist et al., 2012), and combinations of changing ice-cover, salinity, and temperature leading to range-shifts of key crustacean species (Leidenberger et al., 2015). Although the literature on climate-change effects in Swedish coastal waters is still relatively small, it is clear that climate change is already having effects on Swedish marine species, and that projections indicate greater effects in coming decades [with the caveat that there is likely a strong reporting bias toward significant effects: studies that found small, or no, effects of projected climate on species distributions in Swedish coastal waters (e.g. Laugen et al., 2015) are less frequently reported]. In addition to direct effects on individual species, climate change also has indirect – and potentially cascading – effects on interacting species in the ecosystem, which for the Baltic may be substantial (Vuorinen et al., 2015). Thus, the likelihood of substantive shifts in marine ecosystem composition and diversity throughout Swedish coastal waters is high (Elliott et al., 2015, Niiranen et al., 2013).  These likely shifts in ecosystem composition and diversity are critical because many marine protected areas are established to protect key species, and because ecosystem functioning and resilience to climate change are strongly related to biodiversity (Gamfeldt et al., 2015, Lefcheck et al., 2015). Loss of biodiversity has been shown to reduce ecosystem functioning, leading to loss of productivity, resource collapse, and greater sensitivity to disturbance (Cardinale et al., 2012, Worm et al., 2006). Thus, in a broad sense, biodiversity confers resilience on ecological communities (Campbell et al., 2011) and is therefore also critical to the long-term sustainability of ecosystem services in the face of environmental change (Loreau & Mazancourt, 2013).

  • 2.
    Olsson, Jens
    et al.
    Perfomers of environmental monitoring, Universities, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, SLU, Aquatic Resources.
    Jonsson, Anna-Li
    Perfomers of environmental monitoring, Universities, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, SLU, Aquatic Resources.
    Duberg, Jon
    Perfomers of environmental monitoring, Universities, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, SLU, Aquatic Resources.
    Lingman, Anna
    Perfomers of environmental monitoring, Universities, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, SLU, Aquatic Resources.
    Naddafi, Rahmat
    Perfomers of environmental monitoring, Universities, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, SLU, Aquatic Resources.
    Förlin, Lars
    Perfomers of environmental monitoring, Universities, University of Gothenburg, GU, Department of Biological & Environmental Sciences.
    Parkkonen, Jari
    Perfomers of environmental monitoring, Universities, University of Gothenburg, GU, Department of Biological & Environmental Sciences.
    Larsson, Åke
    Perfomers of environmental monitoring, Universities, University of Gothenburg, GU, Department of Biological & Environmental Sciences.
    Asker, Noomi
    Perfomers of environmental monitoring, Universities, University of Gothenburg, GU, Department of Biological & Environmental Sciences.
    Sturve, Joachim
    Perfomers of environmental monitoring, Universities, University of Gothenburg, GU, Department of Biological & Environmental Sciences.
    Ek, Caroline
    Perfomers of environmental monitoring, Government Agencies, Swedish Museum of Natural History, NRM.
    Faxneld, Suzanne
    Perfomers of environmental monitoring, Government Agencies, Swedish Museum of Natural History, NRM.
    Nyberg, Elisabeth
    Perfomers of environmental monitoring, Government Agencies, Swedish Museum of Natural History, NRM.
    Miljön i Hanöbukten 2015-2017: finns det ett samband mellan tillståndet för fisken, dess hälsa och belastningen av miljöfarliga ämnen?2018Report (Other academic)
    Abstract [sv]

    Under slutet av 2000-talet inkom flertalet rapporter från allmänheten och fiskare i de västra delarna av Hanöbukten om låga förekomster av fisk, förekomst av sårskadad fisk och illaluktande vatten i området. Den här rapporten sammanfattar resultaten och slutsatserna från undersökningar i Västra Hanöbukten utförda under 2015-2017 med syfte att undersöka eventuella samband mellan miljöfarliga ämnen och fiskhälsa, samt orsakerna till uppkomsten av sårskadad fisk i området. Därtill presenteras resultaten från provfisken utförda i syfte att kartlägga bestånden av kustfisk i området. Följande fyra frågeställningar besvaras:  

    Vilka eventuella samband mellan miljöfarliga ämnen och fiskhälsa har framkommit?  

    Vilka orsaker till uppkomst av sårskadad fisk har dokumenterats?  

    Vilka resultat har kartläggningen av kustfiskbestånd, miljöfarliga ämnen respektive fiskhälsa lett till?  

    Vilka slutsatser kan dras gällande vilka arter och storleksklasser som påverkas mest av miljöfarliga ämnen?  

    Resultaten från analyserna av miljöfarliga ämnen i skrubbskädda och torsk visar inte på några generellt förhöjda halter av miljöfarliga ämnen i Västra Hanöbukten under 2015-2016 i jämförelse med referensstationerna Kvädöfjärden och Torhamn (Östra Hanöbukten, skrubbskädda) och sydöstra Gotland (torsk). För några miljögifter såsom DDE och PFOS var halterna hos skrubbskädda något högre i Västra Hanöbukten än i Kvädöfjärden, men halterna ligger under gränsvärden för båda dessa ämnen och inom den naturliga variation som är förväntad med hänsyn till inom- och mellanårsvariation i referensstationer. För torsk visade resultaten att sårskador som antas vara orsakade av nejonöga från Hanöbukten hade högre halter av PCB:er, DDT och dess metaboliter, bromerade flamskyddsmedel och PFAS (poly- och perfluorerade ämnen) jämfört med fiskar utan sårskador i området. Om de högre halterna av miljögifter i sårskadad fisk är ett resultat av lägre kondition och fettvikt hos fisken till följd av sårskadorna eller om gifterna i sig påverkar fisken negativt är idag oklart. För torsk med okända sårskador från Hanöbukten kunde ingen koppling göras mellan uppkomst av sårskador och de analyserade miljögifterna.  

    Undersökningarna av skrubbskäddans hälsa i Västra Hanöbukten visade på tydliga fysiologiska skillnader mellan skrubbskädda som fångats i området jämfört med referenslokalen Kvädöfjärden under 2015. Dessa skillnader kan tyda på påverkan av miljögifter. Men de undersökningar som genomfördes under 2016 och 2017 kunde emellertid inte belägga dessa tydliga skillnader när fisk från Västra Hanöbukten jämfördes med den från referensområdet Torhamn i östra Blekinge. Histopatologiska undersökningar på fisk insamlade 2017 visade även att fiskarna i Västra Hanöbukten är relativt friska. Orsaken till de möjligen episodiskt förekommande förändringarna av fiskens hälsotillstånd i Västra Hanöbukten under 2015 är inte känd, men kan vara ett resultat av variation mellan områden i olika omgivningsfaktorer som födotillgång och/eller vattentemperatur. Det kan dock inte uteslutas att de förändringarna i skrubbskädda som observerats kan vara orsakade av ett eller flera miljöfarliga ämnen som inte ingått i undersökningarna som presenteras i denna rapport.  

    Resultaten från provfiskena visar att fisksamhällets struktur och funktion i de västra delarna av Hanöbukten under 2015-2017 inte avviker i jämförelse med tidigare undersökningar i området och andra kustområden i södra Östersjön. Torsk och skrubbskädda är vanliga arter i fisksamhället i Västra Hanöbukten. Även om fångsterna av arterna generellt var låga i provfiskena under 2015-2017, avviker de inte tydligt från tidigare undersökningar i området och i andra kustområden i södra Östersjön utan speglar sannolikt förändringar under senare år i beståndssituationen för arterna i   Östersjön. Emellertid var också konditionen hos torsk och skrubbskädda låg i de västra delarna av Hanöbukten under 2015-2017, och det finns en antydan till lägre kondition hos båda arterna jämfört med andra kustområden i södra Östersjön som möjligen kan tyda på låg födotillgång i området. Frekvensen av fisk (framförallt torsk och skrubbskädda) med yttre fysiska avvikelser såsom bett, sårskador och deformationer verkar vara något förhöjd i Västra Hanöbukten jämfört med andra områden längs den svenska kusten. De typiska frätskador som allmänheten rapporterat i området kunde inte påvisas i provfiskena, och hudsår delvis sannolikt orsakade av andra djur som säl och nejonöga dominerade de yttre fysiska avvikelserna som noterades. Vad som orsakar övriga avvikelser är idag inte klarlagt, men skulle möjligen kunna kopplas till att fiskens låga kondition gör den mer känslig för yttre påverkan.  Med grund i de utförda undersökningar och erhållna resultat under 2015-2017 har inte några tydliga samband mellan miljöfarliga ämnen, fiskens hälsotillstånd och bestånd dokumenterats i Västra Hanöbukten. Det är därför inte heller möjligt att uttala sig om vilka storleksklasser av fisk som är känsligast för miljöfarliga ämnen. Förutom angrepp av andra djur som säl och nejonöga, har inte orsaken till de okända skador som observerats på fisken kunnat fastställas. Med utgångspunkt i de resultat som idag finns tillgängliga, kan det dock inte uteslutas att den avvikande hälsan hos skrubbskäddan i Västra Hanöbukten under 2015 och vissa av de yttre fysiska avvikelserna som noterades hos fisken under provfiskena kan ha orsakats av miljöfarliga ämnen.   Undersökningarna i Västra Hanöbukten under 2015-2017 har bidragit till en ökad kunskap om tillståndet för fisken i området gällande miljögiftsbelastning, hälsa, samhälle och bestånd, och huruvida det nuvarande tillståndet avviker från andra delar av Östersjön. Systemet i de västra delarna av Hanöbukten är relativt unikt i Sverige, med en öppen kust mot södra Östersjön, och informationen som presenteras i denna rapport bör utgöra en grund för en långsiktig miljöövervakning av fisken i området. En långsiktig miljöövervakning i Västra Hanöbukten medger även en framtida bedömning av miljötillståndet i området, och möjliggör samtidigt upptäckt och dokumentation av episodiska fenomen som påverkar fisksamhällets struktur och funktion, samt fiskens individuella hälsa och belastning av miljöfarliga ämnen.

  • 3.
    Olsson, Jens
    et al.
    Perfomers of environmental monitoring, Universities, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, SLU, Aquatic Resources.
    Lingman, Anna
    Perfomers of environmental monitoring, Universities, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, SLU, Aquatic Resources.
    Jonsson, Anna-Li
    Perfomers of environmental monitoring, Universities, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, SLU, Aquatic Resources.
    Förlin, Lars
    Perfomers of environmental monitoring, Universities, University of Gothenburg, GU, Department of Biological & Environmental Sciences.
    Hanson, Niklas
    Perfomers of environmental monitoring, Universities, University of Gothenburg, GU, Department of Biological & Environmental Sciences.
    Larsson, Åke
    Perfomers of environmental monitoring, Universities, University of Gothenburg, GU, Department of Biological & Environmental Sciences.
    Parkkonen, Jari
    Perfomers of environmental monitoring, Universities, University of Gothenburg, GU, Department of Biological & Environmental Sciences.
    Faxneld, Suzanne
    Enheten för miljöforskning och övervakning på Naturhistoriska Riksmuseet.
    Ljunghager, Fredrik
    Swedish Agency for Marine and Water Management.
    Miljöövervakning i Hanöbukten – finns det ett samband mellan tillståndet för fisken, dess hälsa och belastningen av miljöfarliga ämnen?: Delrapport 20162016Report (Other academic)
    Abstract [sv]

    Överlag fanns det inte några övergripande skillnader i de beståndsparametrar som undersökts jämfört med tidigare undersökningar i området. Det fanns heller inga tecken på avvikande fångster utanför Helgeås mynning och endast tecken på syrebrist vid en lokal under den undersökta perioden. Det observerades en något förhöjd sjukdomsfrekvens hos fiskar i Hanöbukten. De bakomliggande orsakerna till den förhöjda sjukdomsfrekvensen i området är inte klarlagd, men pekar på en yttre påverkan på individ-, men inte på bestånds- eller samhällsnivå hos fisken.

    Resultaten från undersökningarna av fiskars hälsotillstånd visar på flera mycket tydliga fysiologiska skillnader hos fiskarna mellan Hanöbukten och referensområdet Kvädöfjärden. Tolkningen kompliceras av det faktum att de två jämförda populationerna av skrubbskädda anses ha olika lekstrategier vilket kan ha påverkat främst fysiologiska mätvariabler som ska spegla fortplantningfunktionen. Det är dock viktigt att betona att det är mycket unikt att två populationer av samma fiskart som fångats vid samma tidpunkt på året uppvisar så stora skillnader i fysiologiska hälsovariabler mellan två områden. Det kan därför inte uteslutas att de observerade skillnaderna för flera hälsovariabler är en indikation på att fiskarna i Hanöbukten är exponerade för något eller några toxiska ämnen. 

    Resultaten från miljögiftsundersökningen visar att det inte är några förhöjda halter av metaller, PCB:er, bromerade flamskyddsmedel och dioxiner i skrubbskäddor från Hanöbukten jämfört med Kvädöfjärden. DDT, kvoten DDT/DDE och PFOS var däremot något högre i Hanöbukten. Resultat från övervakning av sill i Hanöbukten visar också att PFOS och några andra perfluorerade ämnen är förhöjda jämfört med de flesta andra övervakningslokaler i Östersjön. 

    Sammantaget ger inte fiskundersökningarna under 2015 några belägg för effekter på beståndsnivå. Däremot observerades effekter på fisk i Hanöbukten på individnivå, såsom svagt förhöjd sjukdomsfrekvens hos torsk och skrubbskädda samt tecken på hälsoeffekter hos skrubbskädda. Överlag fanns inga förhöjda halter av miljögifter, men det observerades en förhöjd halt av DDT och PFOS och en högre DDT/DDE kvot hos skrubbskädda i området. Fortsatta fiskundersökningar under hösten 2016 syftar till att säkerställa att observerade skillnader/effekter är bestående, samt att försöka belysa vilken betydelse de olika populationernas fortplantningsstrategi respektive rådande miljögiftsbelastning i området har för de observerade hälsoeffekterna hos skrubbskädda i Hanöbukten.

  • 4.
    Prutzer, Madeleine
    et al.
    Perfomers of environmental monitoring, Universities, University of Gothenburg, GU.
    Soneryd, Linda
    Perfomers of environmental monitoring, Universities, University of Gothenburg, GU.
    Samverkan och  deltagande i vattenråd och vattenförvaltning2016Report (Other academic)
    Abstract [sv]

    Syftet med denna rapport är att sammanställa forskning och information om deltagande i vattenråd, kustvattenråd och vattenförvaltning. Rapporten omfattar en beskrivning och analys av befintligt kunskapsläge: Vilken information och forskning finns om former för deltagande och samverkan som genomförs inom vattenförvaltning i Sverige? Vilka aktörer inkluderas i deltagande och samverkan? Vilka metoder eller ansatser har varit användbara och för vilka syften?   

    Rapporten baseras på publicerade studier, rapporter samt övrigt tillgängligt material från myndigheter och vattenråd. Rapporten avslutas med en sammanfattning av kunskapsläget, en bristanalys som identifierar kunskapsluckor samt en sammanfattande diskussion.

  • 5.
    Wrange, Anna-Lisa
    Perfomers of environmental monitoring, Universities, University of Gothenburg, GU, Department of Biological & Environmental Sciences.
    Havstulpanprojektet på västkusten 2012: En studie om påväxtdynamik i norra Bohuslän under båtsäsongen 20122013Report (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Since 2001, Skärgårdsstiftelsen in Stockholm has been running a monitoring project along the Swedish east coast on barnacle fouling on boats with the aim to reduce the use of toxic antifouling paints, and promote more environmentally friendly methods such as mechanical cleaning. The project involves making observations of barnacle settlement available to the public, so that boats can be taken out of the water in time and cleaned before the barnacles attach too firmly. This system has worked well along parts of the Baltic Sea coast, since barnacles only settle a few times per year. However, on the Swedish west coast the fouling community is generally more complex with higher species diversity and more intense fouling throughout the season.   The aim of this study was to document the intensity and dynamics of the fouling community on the Swedish west coast and evaluate the potential for increased use of mechanical cleaning of boat hauls, as an alternative to using antifouling paints. As expected the species diversity and intensity was considerably higher than what is normally observed along the Baltic Sea coast. The fouling community was dominated by barnacles, tunicates and mussels, but also bryozoans, hydroids and filamentous algae were observed. Species composition and intensity of fouling differed considerably between closely located sites, especially after four weeks. Barnacles dominated the community at all sites during the first two weeks after panels had been placed in the sea. Newly settled barnacles were observed throughout the whole boat season, although intensities were highest in June-August. The fouling on the panels corresponded relatively well with what was observed on boat hauls, especially during the first weeks. Based on these results, mechanical cleaning of boat hauls is recommended every two to four weeks, to avoid difficulties in removing fouling organisms using simple mechanical techniques. This project was a collaboration between Skärgårdsstiftelsen in Stockholm and the University of Gothenburg, with funding from the Swedish Agency for Marine and Water Management.

  • 6.
    Nilsson, Jessica (Editor)
    Swedish Agency for Marine and Water Management.
    Snoeijs-Leijonmalm, Pauline (Editor)
    Perfomers of environmental monitoring, Universities, Stockholm University, SU.
    Havenhand, Jon (Editor)
    Perfomers of environmental monitoring, Universities, University of Gothenburg, GU.
    Nilsson, Per (Editor)
    Perfomers of environmental monitoring, Universities, University of Gothenburg, GU.
    Scientific considerations of  how Arctic Marine Protected Area (MPA) networks may reduce  negative effects of climate change and ocean acidification: Report from the Third Expert Workshop on Marine Protected Area networks in  the Arctic, organised by Sweden and Finland under the auspices of the PAME  working group of the Arctic Council in Helsinki, Finland, 21-22 September 20172017Report (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Rapid environmental changes in the Arctic

    During the last two decades, the Arctic region has become an area of international strategic importance for states, businesses, NGOs and other stakeholders. The rapid environmental changes in the Arctic create new opportunities for different actors that may impact negatively on ecological and social values. Global climate change and ocean acidification change the habitats of the cold-adapted organisms living in the Arctic, with the risk of exterminating unique biodiversity. Human-induced emissions of greenhouse gases (primarily carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide) affect the balance between energy entering and leaving the Earth’s system resulting in global warming, melting of sea-ice (which increases heat absorption by the Arctic Ocean), and associated climate change. Approximately 27 % of the carbon dioxide released to the atmosphere every year is absorbed by the oceans. This keeps the atmosphere from warming as much as it otherwise would, but creates ocean acidification. In the Arctic region climate change and ocean acidification take place 10-100 times faster than at any time in the last 65 million years.

    Intention of the workshop

    This third expert workshop on Marine Protected Area (MPA) networks in the Arctic, organised by Sweden and Finland, was held in Helsinki (Finland) and its outcome is a contribution to the ‘‘PAME MPA-network toolbox’’ project. An MPA, as defined by PAME, is ‘‘a clearly defined geographical space recognized, dedicated, and managed, through legal or other effective means, to achieve the long-term conservation of nature with associated ecosystem services and cultural values’. An MPA network is a collection of individual MPAs or reserves operating cooperatively and synergistically, at various spatial scales, and with a range of protection levels that are designed to meet objectives that a single reserve cannot achieve. During this third expert workshop the scientific basis of how MPA networks may reduce negative effects of climate change and ocean acidification in the Arctic region was discussed. Workshop participants were mainly scientists with expertise on Arctic marine ecosystems, climate change, ocean acidification and/or MPAs. The intention of the workshop was not to reach consensus and provide a fixed list of recommendations, but rather to summarize: (1) the best available knowledge that can already be applied to the planning of a pan-Arctic MPA network, and (2) the primary uncertainties and, hence, what necessary scientific knowledge is still lacking. As such, the six main outcomes from the workshop below contribute to the scientific basis for the potential of MPAs as a tool to meet the threats posed by climate change and ocean acidification to Arctic ecosystems and livelihoods.

    A paradigm shift for establishing MPAs is necessary

    Given the rapid environmental changes and unprecedented rate of loss of Arctic sea ice there is an urgency to protect habitats that are essential for ecosystem functioning and to link MPAs in an international network. Humanity has now the opportunity of a pro-active and precautionary approach vis-à-vis the largely intact, highly sensitive and unique cold-adapted Arctic marine ecosystems. The current paradigm for the creation of MPAs seems to be that a direct regional or local threat needs to be proven before an MPA can be designated. However, climate change and ocean acidification are global processes that operate across the whole Arctic, and therefore this paradigm should be shifted towards one that establishes MPA networks to protect what is valued and cherished before it is harmed. This calls for applying the precautionary principle and creating Arctic MPA networks that will support resilience of biodiversity and ecosystem services to climate change and ocean acidification. Scientists are aware that not all desired knowledge for planning such networks is available at this time. This includes uncertainty associated with projecting the consequences of climate change across the physical (e.g. climate models), ecological (e.g. species diversity, ecosystem processes) to the human domain (e.g. ecosystem services, human well-being). Uncertainty about the effects of climate change and ocean acidification grows when moving from physical processes to ecology and finally to human well-being. Nonetheless, general ecological principles and additional experience from other regions (e.g. Antarctica, Baltic Sea) provide sufficient basic understanding to start designing a robust pan-Arctic MPA network already now and to develop and implement the necessary connected management measures.

    Existing MPA criteria need to be adapted to Arctic conditions

    Creating an MPA network for the Arctic will require adaptation of established criteria to the unique, and rapidly changing, character of the region. For example, optimal MPA locations for some MPAs in the Arctic Ocean may not be stationary in space and time; e.g. high-biodiversity marginal ice zone (MIZ) ecosystems will become more dynamic in time and space, contracting in winter and expanding in summer, with climate change. In order to account for the migration of species with moving physico-chemical conditions (so-called ‘climate tracking’) creating dynamic MPAs along oceanographic and climatic gradients may be a feasible and effective approach. Such focus on ocean features, the integration of other effective area-based measures next to MPAs, as well as the systematic integration of traditional and local knowledge (TLK), will be essential in the process of designating MPA networks. In so doing, the vulnerability and status of Arctic ecosystems to cumulative drivers and pressures from not only regional and local scales (fishing, tourism, pollution, etc.) but also global scales (climate change and ocean acidification) should be monitored and reviewed on a regular basis.

    Arctic MPAs should be located in areas that are expected to become refugia

    Climate change and ocean acidificationdo not operate in isolation but combine with regional and local environmental stressors to affect Arctic species, habitats, and ecosystems. It is possible to lessen the total stress burden and increase the resilience of biodiversity to the impacts of climate change and ocean acidification by mitigating stresses from direct anthropogenic pressures, such as habitat destruction, fishing, shipping, discharges of hazardous substances, etc., through establishing MPA networks. This will not ‘solve’ the underlying problems of climate change and ocean acidification, which can only be done by reducing atmospheric greenhouse gas emissions, but it will ‘buy time’ during which the underlying problems are addressed globally.

    Additional stresses should be targeted

    A key aspect is how to identify the location of prospective MPAs within a network. Since the effects of climate change and ocean acidification are unevenly distributed across the Arctic Ocean, it would be recommended to protect habitats that will act as refugia for Arctic biodiversity. For example, protecting the areas north of Greenland, where summer sea ice is projected to be most long-lasting, or parts of the Arctic Ocean where the supply of organic matter through permafrost melt, glacier melt, higher precipitation and higher river runoff (with increasing coastal CO2 concentrations through microbial activity) will be lowest. The 18 Arctic large marine ecosystems (LMEs) reflect the marine ecosystem variability in the region, and should be used to draft plans for MPA networks to more effectively consider representativeness.

    The scientific knowledge basis must be improved

    The workshop highlighted the need for a dedicated group to compile relevant geophysical and biological data for the purpose of MPA network planning. These data should include the changing environment, ‘spatial adaptation planning’, biochemical gradients, and identification of areas of high and low impact of climate change and ocean acidification. There is a wealth of information available (both reviews and analyses of knowledge gaps from CAFF, AMAP and others), that can be used for MPA planning but this information is highly scattered and needs to be collated and made spatially explicit, when possible. While the planning for MPA networks can start already now, there remains a large need for monitoring and relevant scientific research. This would require not only improved scientific cooperation between countries but also truly integrated international monitoring and research to decrease fragmentation and duplication of research.

    Identification of research priorities

    Gaps in knowledge identified by the workshop participants mainly concern the winter season, the vulnerability and resilience of the Arctic marine ecosystems and the need to support sustainable development. With respect to climate change much more is known about species higher up in the food web (seabirds, marine mammals, some fish) than about species lower in food web. For ocean acidification, most of the experimental work has been done on lower trophic levels. Much uncertainty surrounds the fate of Arctic ecosystems in a future world and how to deal with uncertainties is an issue that should be addressed in scientific studies. For example, the disappearance of strongly ice-associated species in many places will likely lead to a state-change in the associated ecosystem, yet the timing and nature of that change is currently unpredictable. While the basic drivers of the Arctic shelf-sea ecosystems are quite well understood, there is a massive lack of information at all trophic levels for the Central Arctic Ocean  LME, i.e. the deep central basin, and key species are difficult to identify. Presently, this high-latitude ecosystem is ice-bound, but climate projections indicate that it will become ice-free during summer within decades; the projected spatial and temporal variability is however very large and is likely not predictable. It is not known if native species will be able to adapt to the very rapid rates of change. It is also not known if more southern species that may migrate into the new ice-free areas will be able to adapt to certain local conditions that are not likely to change, e.g. the low nutrient availability in the Central Arctic Ocean . While many coastal areas may become more productive as melting terrestrial ice and snow transports nutrients to the sea, the Central Arctic Ocean is expected to remain nutrient-poor since no new nutrients are projected to reach this remote area with climate change. Clear is that the ecosystems of the Arctic Ocean, and especially the Central Arctic Ocean, face critical changes, which will be large and unprecedented, and that there is an urgent need for food-web studies and ecosystem modelling to inform the establishment of marine protection regimes in the Arctic.

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