The future of Governance and handling Vulnerability in Arctic Ecosystems


  • 11:00 Coproducing knowledge for ocean acidification governance.
    Authors: Halvor Dannevig ( Western Norway Research Institute ); Grete Hovelsrud ( Nord University )

    Ocean acidification (OA) is already impacting marine organisms and is likely to fundamentally alter marine ecosystems in the coming decades, particularly in the Arctic, with major implications for ocean services, such as food provision. Though OA is an emerging concern in coastal zone management, current actions are limited to monitoring and knowledge production. The framework includes four components: 1) facilitating knowledge exchange and identify challenges and opportunities relating to OA; 2) ensuring legitimacy of new knowledges; 3) building capacity through learning and skill development and 4) agenda-setting OA in coastal zone management.  The framework is inspired by our previous research and findings concerning the processes of agenda-setting climate change adaptation at the local level. It combines insights from the co-production of knowledge literature, participatory methods and coastal zone management literature, and has been tested in two cases in Norway, including Northern Norway. The case studies include local and regional coastal zone management stakeholders and, using OA measurements and modelling, illustrate co-production of new knowledge of local ocean acidification and its potential local impacts. Through two rounds of workshops, we demonstrate that the level of OA awareness markedly increase among stakeholders. This awareness manifests in vocal interest for looming projected impacts and their necessary mitigative measures. This concern is compounded by stakeholders, who recognize that OA should be treated as a component of water-quality, implying that OA is gaining salience as a local policy issue. However, it is evident that local management faces challenges in addressing such an issue, combined with expectations that higher levels of government take responsibility for mitigative and adaptive actions in response to OA.

  • 11:15 Ecosystem wealth in the Barents Sea
    Authors: Sturla Kvamsdal ( SNF - Centre for Applied Research at NHH ); Diwakar Poudel ( Norwegian Polar Institute ); Leif Sandal ( NHH Norwegian School of Economics )

    Sustainability is fundamental to natural resource management. Renewable natural resources exist in an intricate interplay with an ecosystem and the environment. Management of the resource hence influences the ecosystem, and human interventions in other parts of the ecosystem or environment influence the resource. Management grounded in sustainability must consider these interactive effects while maintaining the capacity for future resource needs. Sustainable and ecosystem-based management poses, in other words, intricate and complex problems that require new tools to gauge resource scarcity, opportunity cost, and substitution opportunities (and limitations) between different capital stocks. Yun et al. (2017) presented an inclusive wealth headline index for sustainable ecosystem-based management that made headway toward measuring resource scarcity and substitution opportunities. We further broaden the applicability of this index to acknowledge uncertainty in underlying dynamics and capital stocks not directly utilized.

    We apply the approach to three key fish stocks in the Barents Sea; cod, capelin, and herring. The cod fishery is commercially and historically important, and is the largest cod fishery in the world. Capelin is the most important prey species for the cod and is also commercially exploited. Herring is not fished for in the Barents Sea but has an important influence on the ecosystem, both as prey for cod and as predator on capelin larvae. Limiting our bioeconomic model to these three species has the advantage that the cod stock dynamics is reasonably well captured while the model remain tractable. To limit our scope to obtain a measure of the ecosystem wealth resting in these species and deriving relevant accounting prices for them, we adopt the bioeconomic model established by Poudel and Sandal (2015).

    We compare outcomes from two main economic programs; business-as-usual (BAU) and ecosystem-based management (EBM). BAU is crudely approximated by maximum sustainable yield for the individual species. EBM is, given the model structure, the optimal management plan and takes into account both ecological and economic tradeoffs. We find that continuing with BAU, ecosystem wealth is largely maintained at its current level, while wealth may increase significantly (20-25%) under EBM. Similarly to Yun et al. (2017), we find that more wealth rests in the prey species stocks than what their market prices suggest. When comparing our measure of inclusive wealth to a simple aggregate evaluated at market prices, we find that our measure is larger by an order of magnitude.

  • 11:30 Will Integrated Ecosystem Assessments be reflected in integration between sectorial management? Experiences and thoughts from the Barents Sea and Norwegian holistic ecosystem management plans
    Authors: Gro I. van der Meeren ( Institute of Marine Research ); Mette Skern-Mauritzen ( Institute of Marine Research )

    All large open sea regions in Norway have implemented holistic, ecosystem-based management plans. The purpose of the Norwegian management plans is to provide a framework for the sustainable use of natural resources and ecosystem services derived from our seas and at the same time maintain the structure, functions, productivity and diversity of the areas ecosystems. The management plans are thus tools for both facilitating value creation and maintaining the high environmental value of the areas, and prepared as collaboration between a series of ministries with a wide range of responsibilities, including environment, fisheries, energy and transport and more. The state and trends of ecosystem parameters and indicators are reported and the plans are updated and revised regularly.

    However, while the reports and the white papers are made in close collaboration between a variety of directorates and scientists from several institutions, as well as inviting stakeholders to respond to the plans before they are finalized and implemented, each ministry and the underlying directorates have different ways to implement the management plans and use the underlying information and suggestions therein to develop and manage their particular field of responsibility. 

    Some of the issues that arise from this are rooted in the differences in priorities, responsibilities and perspectives among sectors. While the Ministry for Climate and Environment is responsible for ensuring protection of vulnerable nature, the maritime, fisheries and energy sectors are responsible for sustainable exploitation and use of the same natural resources. Thus, alternative interpretations and valuation of ecosystem-based terminologies are present, as well as very different approaches to priority in risk assessments.

    The development from historical single pressure/single species approaches, handled within each sector separately, to the present demand for multiple pressures/multiple subjects and appropriate responses to these complex picture, are still in development. This talk will present some thoughts on the positive experiences and on some of the obstacles, with an emphasis on the difference in risk assessment methods used by the sectors, as observed by the authors.

Science Science

Thursday 24th January 2019

11:00 - 12:00

Clarion Hotel The Edge - Importkompaniet

Add to Calendar 2019-01-24 11:00 2019-01-24 12:00 Europe/Oslo The future of Governance and handling Vulnerability in Arctic Ecosystems Clarion Hotel The Edge - Importkompaniet

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