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The Skimmer on Marine Ecosystems and Management

Editor's note: Charles Ehler, president of Ocean Visions (Paris, France), served as marine spatial planning consultant to the Aspen Institute's Commission on Arctic Climate Change and was co-author of UNESCO's guide to marine spatial planning, published in 2009 (www.unesco-ioc-marinesp.be/publications).

The Skimmer on Marine Ecosystems and Management

On 10 May, Australia's Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) is hosting a symposium on how knowledge about food webs can be best integrated into marine EBM. Specifically the symposium is focusing on the movement of stable isotopes through food webs (www.csiro.au/org/Stable-Isotope-Symposium.html).

What are "stable isotopes"? For insights MEAM asked Beth Fulton, who leads the ecosystem modeling group in marine and atmospheric research at CSIRO.

The Skimmer on Marine Ecosystems and Management

Online consultation on MSP and integrated coastal zone management in Europe

The European Commission is gathering stakeholder feedback on the status and future of maritime spatial planning and integrated coastal zone management in Europe, including where EU action on these subjects would be most useful. The information, collected via online questionnaire, will be used as part of an impact assessment by the Commission and may inform the preparation of draft proposals on EU ocean governance.

The Skimmer on Marine Ecosystems and Management

In the view of many ocean stakeholders, the terms "ocean zoning" and "marine spatial planning" are often taken to mean the same thing: that is, lines on a map showing where some ocean uses are allowed and others are not. However, there are in fact distinctions between the concepts. The most basic is that marine spatial planning (MSP) is the process of planning ocean uses, whereas zoning is a regulatory measure to help implement the results of such planning.

The Skimmer on Marine Ecosystems and Management

On the Pacific coast of Canada, several First Nations (indigenous societies) have blended their traditional resource management with EBM as part of the Pacific North Coast Integrated Management Area initiative. The initiative's aim is to ensure a healthy, safe, and prosperous ocean area by engaging all interested parties - including stakeholders and federal and provincial agencies - in the collaborative development and implementation of an integrated management plan (www.pncima.org).

The Skimmer on Marine Ecosystems and Management

In January, massive flooding in the Australian state of Queensland killed at least 35 people and sent plumes of muddy, polluted water downstream and into the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park. The marine park's water quality management program (www.gbrmpa.gov.au/corp_site/key_issues/water_quality) monitors a wide array of nutrients and pollutants that flow from the neighboring river catchments to the MPA's waters. The program includes a flood plume monitoring program directed by Michelle Devlin of James Cook University.

The Skimmer on Marine Ecosystems and Management

Webinar on EBM in practice: recording available

An audio recording of the 13 January 2011 webinar on EBM in practice along the US west coast, co-presented by MEAM and the EBM Tools Network, is available at www.ebmtools.org/about_ebm/meam.html. The webinar featured the work of the West Coast EBM Network, a partnership of community-based initiatives focused on proactive management of local coastal ecosystems (www.westcoastebm.org).

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