Climate Change

IUCN Explaining Ocean Warming report

Explaining Ocean Warming is a comprehensive report produced by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) looking at the impacts of warming on ocean life, ecosystems, and goods and services. The report is the work of 80 scientists from 12 countries, launched during the IUCN World Conservation Congress, September 1-10 in Hawaii. Nereus Program research was contributed to two chapters within the report.

Sustainable management of the high seas could recoup fish stock losses due to climate change

Closing the high seas to fishing could increase fish catches in coastal waters by 10%, compensating for expected losses due to climate change, finds a new Nippon Foundation-Nereus Program study published in Fish and Fisheries.

The high seas are those areas of the ocean outside the jurisdiction of countries; the high seas cover nearly two thirds of the ocean’s surface. These results could be seen by 2050 relative to 2000 and cooperatively managing the high seas fisheries would have similar effects.

POLICY BRIEF: Space for conservation and sustainable use: area-based management in areas beyond national jurisdiction

Marine areas beyond the limits of national jurisdiction contain ecosystems with marine resources and biodiversity of significant ecological, socioeconomic, and cultural importance. These areas and their resources are subject to increasing impacts from ongoing human activities and global climate change and their associated cumulative and combined effects.

POLICY BRIEF: Climate Change in Oceans Beyond National Jurisdictions

Despite their remoteness, the high seas and deep ocean in areas beyond national jurisdiction (ABNJ) are at the forefront of CO2-induced climate stress, both in their mitigation capacity, and their vulnerabilities. Carbon dioxide (CO2) emission alters ocean conditions, leading to ocean warming, deoxygenation and acidification. These ocean changes affect marine life throughout the ABNJ, from the surface to the deep sea, by changing species’ distributions, migration routes, ecosystem structure and functions.

POLICY BRIEF: Satellite tracking to monitor area-based management tools & identify governance gaps in fisheries beyond national jurisdiction

A new source of publicly accessible data on fishing vessel activity is providing unprecedented insight into the scope of fishing in areas beyond national jurisdiction (ABNJ) and governance gaps therein. This emerging source of ocean ‘big data’ can help quantify who is fishing where in ABNJ, can enhance cooperation between competent authorities, and can help States and competent organizations implement policies and management measures related to the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity beyond national jurisdiction.

POLICY BRIEF: Open Data: enabling conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity in areas beyond national jurisdiction

Open data is critically important for effective conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity in areas beyond national jurisdiction (ABNJ). Open data enables effective and efficient environmental impact assessments, area-based management, sharing of non-monetary benefits of marine genetic resources and achieving marine technology transfer. As components of marine technology transfer, data acquisition (including biological, genetic, environmental and other forms of data) and accessibility are therefore both important issues for the new instrument.

POLICY BRIEF: Technology Transfer

The United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) Part XIV provides for State cooperation with the view to promoting the development and transfer of marine science and technology. In addition, Article 202 refers to the provision of scientific and technical assistance to developing States for the protection and preservation of the marine environment. UNCLOS Part XIV and XIII refer to various forms of technology transfer including training, access to information, international scientific research cooperation and establishing national and regional marine science and technology centres.

Sources of uncertainties in 21st century projections of potential ocean ecosystem stressors

The ocean has provided incredible services for us — taking up 28% of carbon emissions since preindustrial levels and absorbing 93% of the Earth’s excess heat since the 1970s — but because of this, it is undergoing changes. In order to manage ocean ecosystems and resources in the future, we must begin to understand what those changes may look like using climate change impact projections.

Impacts of climate change on marine fisheries, aquaculture, coastal tourism, and human health: an update

The Fifth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), released in 2013 and 2014, highlighted the vulnerability, impacts and adaptation of marine systems to climate change and ocean acidification. As this field of research is constantly building and evolving, “Observed and projected impacts of climate change on marine fisheries, aquaculture, coastal tourism, and human health: an update” was recently published as an update of findings since the release of the report.