North Sea fishermen should be allowed to play a greater part in taking care of the marine environment as part of a new strategy to protect the sea’s wildlife and habitats.
European scientists, led by a team at the University of Newcastle upon Tyne, have come up with a pioneering North Sea fisheries management plan which recognises the importance of humans and their interaction with the marine environment, or ecosystem.
The scientists, who are funded by the European Union, have produced the North Sea Fisheries Ecosystem Plan (FEP), which shows how an ‘ecosystem approach’ could be introduced to manage the North Sea fisheries and highlights the importance of consulting stakeholders, like fishermen, in developing management plans.
During the development of the FEP, stakeholders were asked what they thought were the main threats to the North Sea ecosystem, and its fisheries, as well as their preferred management tools. Scientific researchers used this information to model how various forms of management can be used to protect important aspects of the North Sea ecosystem, including the fisheries. Stakeholders were then consulted again on the ‘toolbox’ of measures developed from the models before the FEP was produced.
Professor Chris Frid, project leader, of Newcastle University’s School of Marine Sciences and Technology, said: “Policy makers have been criticised in the past for having a ‘top-down’ approach to fisheries management. However, our team has worked closely with industry and other interested parties to come up with a framework which should see fish stocks rebuilt and the environment protected. “
Commenting on the stewardship proposal, he added: “The seas and oceans are held in common ownership and we have a duty to steward them for future generations, managing them for a common good. Fishermen spend their lives at sea, they know and understand the environment, and this scheme can help them play a more direct role in the stewardship of our fish stocks, marine life and maritime heritage. “The Fisheries Ecosystem process should also be about ensuring they are equipped with the necessary knowledge, tools and incentives to discharge this responsibility on behalf of society.”
Barrie Deas, chief executive of the National Federation of Fishermen’s Organisations, said: “We welcome the balanced approach evident in the FEP, and particularly the central attention given to the importance of stakeholder involvement. This accords with the experiences of the best fisheries management schemes around the world where stakeholders need to be at the centre of the decision-making process.”
Professor Tim Gray, a social science researcher in the project team, said: “Greater stakeholder involvement in fisheries governance of the North Sea is a necessity, both to enhance the quality of management decisions, and to ensure compliance with fisheries regulations.” Dr Jake Rice, chief scientist of the International Council for the Exploration of the Sea (ICES), and a member of the FEP’s steering group, said: “This is a very important achievement. The ecosystem approach to fisheries management is a very important and daunting challenge as soon as one tries to go from concepts to practical measures. “The success of this project came partly from identifying and concentrating on key species, key concepts and very largely from making explicit that stakeholder involvement is a precondition, not an add-on, for development of effective policies.”
Claire Jordan | alfa
Conservationists are sounding the alarm: parrots much more threatened than assumed
15.09.2017 | Justus-Liebig-Universität Gießen
A new indicator for marine ecosystem changes: the diatom/dinoflagellate index
21.08.2017 | Leibniz-Institut für Ostseeforschung Warnemünde
At the productronica trade fair in Munich this November, the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT will be presenting Laser-Based Tape-Automated Bonding, LaserTAB for short. The experts from Aachen will be demonstrating how new battery cells and power electronics can be micro-welded more efficiently and precisely than ever before thanks to new optics and robot support.
Fraunhofer ILT from Aachen relies on a clever combination of robotics and a laser scanner with new optics as well as process monitoring, which it has developed...
Plants and algae use the enzyme Rubisco to fix carbon dioxide, removing it from the atmosphere and converting it into biomass. Algae have figured out a way to increase the efficiency of carbon fixation. They gather most of their Rubisco into a ball-shaped microcompartment called the pyrenoid, which they flood with a high local concentration of carbon dioxide. A team of scientists at Princeton University, the Carnegie Institution for Science, Stanford University and the Max Plank Institute of Biochemistry have unravelled the mysteries of how the pyrenoid is assembled. These insights can help to engineer crops that remove more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere while producing more food.
A warming planet
Our brains house extremely complex neuronal circuits, whose detailed structures are still largely unknown. This is especially true for the so-called cerebral cortex of mammals, where among other things vision, thoughts or spatial orientation are being computed. Here the rules by which nerve cells are connected to each other are only partly understood. A team of scientists around Moritz Helmstaedter at the Frankfiurt Max Planck Institute for Brain Research and Helene Schmidt (Humboldt University in Berlin) have now discovered a surprisingly precise nerve cell connectivity pattern in the part of the cerebral cortex that is responsible for orienting the individual animal or human in space.
The researchers report online in Nature (Schmidt et al., 2017. Axonal synapse sorting in medial entorhinal cortex, DOI: 10.1038/nature24005) that synapses in...
Whispering gallery mode (WGM) resonators are used to make tiny micro-lasers, sensors, switches, routers and other devices. These tiny structures rely on a...
Using ultrafast flashes of laser and x-ray radiation, scientists at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics (Garching, Germany) took snapshots of the briefest electron motion inside a solid material to date. The electron motion lasted only 750 billionths of the billionth of a second before it fainted, setting a new record of human capability to capture ultrafast processes inside solids!
When x-rays shine onto solid materials or large molecules, an electron is pushed away from its original place near the nucleus of the atom, leaving a hole...
19.09.2017 | Event News
12.09.2017 | Event News
06.09.2017 | Event News
25.09.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering
25.09.2017 | Health and Medicine
25.09.2017 | Physics and Astronomy