Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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    An exploration of potential effects on fisheries and exploited stocks of a network of marine protected areas in the North Sea
    Kooten, T. van; Deerenberg, C.M. ; Jak, R.G. ; Hal, R. van; Machiels, M.A.M. - \ 2015
    IJmuiden : IMARES Wageningen UR (Report / IMARES Wageningen UR C093/14) - 52
    visserijbeleid - zeevisserij - zeereservaten - noordzee - visserijbeheer - fishery policy - marine fisheries - marine protected areas - north sea - fishery management
    WWF Netherlands has developed a proposal for a network of Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) in the North Sea. Most of the MPAs in this network are already protected under the Natura 2000 framework and/or the Marine Strategy Framework Directive. WWF Netherlands aims to engage with stakeholders and build support for this proposed MPA network. One of the most prominent of these stakeholders is the fishing industry. To provide input for the discussion with stakeholders, the current study investigates potential fishery effects of a total fishery ban in each of the marine protected areas. This represents a hypothetical choice to facilitate comparison with existing scientific literature and calculations of quantity and value of catches and does not reflect a proposal for a total fishery closure of the entire network by either IMARES or WWF Netherlands.
    Pilot study on behaviour of sharks around Saba using acoustic telemetry - Progress report 2014
    Winter, H.V. ; Vink, D. ; Beek, I.J.M. van - \ 2015
    IJmuiden : IMARES (Report / IMARES Wageningen UR C026/15) - 21
    haaien - saba - zeereservaten - telemetrie - migratie - verspreiding - universitair onderzoek - sharks - saba - marine protected areas - telemetry - migration - dispersal - university research
    Worldwide many shark populations are in strong decline mainly due to fisheries. Population status of sharks in the Caribbean is still poorly known. In order to be able to take effective measures to protect sharks, insight in their spatial behaviour during different life stages is required. Do marine parks enhance shark populations and if so at what scale? This pilot study mainly aims at determining the feasibility of using telemetry around Saba and at a later stage at the Saba Bank and surrounding islands, e.g. what logistics and which co-operation, catching and deployment methods are required to set-up telemetric experiments for target shark species, and to get a first insight of the scale of movement patterns of the target shark species.
    The coproduction of knowledge and policy in coastal governance: Integrating mussel fisheries and nature restoration
    Molen, F. van der; Puente Rodriguez, D. ; Swart, J.A.A. ; Windt, H.J. v.d. - \ 2015
    Ocean & Coastal Management 106 (2015). - ISSN 0964-5691 - p. 49 - 60.
    dutch-wadden sea - local ecological knowledge - marine protected areas - adaptive governance - zone management - interface - science - conservation - framework - dynamics
    One of the challenges of coastal governance is to connect a variety of knowledge systems. The purpose of this paper is to show how a coastal governance practice can emerge and stabilize, such that actors with disparate knowledge systems collaborate towards the shared goal of sustainable resource use. We analyze this stabilization in terms of the coproduction of knowledge and policy. This paper is empirically informed by a case study on the transition towards a sustainable mussel fishery in the Dutch Wadden Sea. Our study illuminates the difficulties of underpinning a coastal governance practice with scientific research, since the relevance, quality, and results of research are interpreted differently from the perspectives of resource users and conservationists. Furthermore, our analysis shows that such a governance practice can stabilize through a combination of rule negotiation, legal, societal, and political pressure, along with collaborative knowledge creation. Based on our analysis, we identify several aspects of collaborative knowledge creation that enable the formation of a shared knowledge base for governance in a context of controversy. These include the shared ownership of research, knowledge creation as an integral part of governance, a focus on data and basic facts, and the close involvement of trusted experts. The findings of this study suggest that a controversial setting strongly structures knowledge creation, while at the same time knowledge creation enables coastal governance as a way of dealing with conflicts.
    Punishment and compliance: Exploring scenarios to improve the legitimacy of small-scale fisheries management rules on the Brazilian coast
    Karper, M.A.M. ; Lopes, P.P.M. - \ 2014
    Marine Policy 44 (2014). - ISSN 0308-597X - p. 457 - 464.
    marine protected areas - resource-management - crime - enforcement - regulations - impacts - ocean - age
    This study investigated the effects of legal and societal punishment on fishermen's compliance behaviour, according to fishermen's age and level of dependency on fisheries, through the use of interviews and scenarios. Ninety-five fishermen living in a coastal park (Ponta do Tubardo Sustainable Development Reserve) in the Brazilian northeast, where controlled exploitation of natural resources is allowed, took part in this study. The results showed that age alone would not affect compliance, regardless of the level of enforcement. However, it was noticed that the fishermen who claimed to depend on the money provided by fisheries, regardless of their age, were more likely to say that they would not comply, even if enforcement were stricter. The scenario analysis showed that increased monitoring and punishment (including societal pressure) could enhance compliance, especially among younger fishermen, who claimed not to depend solely on fisheries. Therefore, fisheries management should also consider differences in social groups, and not focus solely on the enforcement and punishment mechanisms, assuring that livelihood options that consider different social needs are provided. (C) 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
    The Methodologies of Empowerment? A Systematic Review of the Deployment of Participation in the Coastal Zone Management Literature
    Puente Rodriguez, D. - \ 2014
    Coastal Management 42 (2014)5. - ISSN 0892-0753 - p. 426 - 446.
    marine protected areas - integrated coastal - wadden sea - resource-management - ocean management - decision-making - climate-change - governance - knowledge - policy
    Participation (e.g., stakeholder involvement) has become a central concept in the practice of environmental and coastal zone management. Research has shown that the integration of participation in coastal zone management has positive ecological and social outcomes. In the literature, however, participation is often reported in an unstructured and uncritical manner. Therefore, to find out whether and how there is a useful way to structure and characterize the way the coastal zone management literature deals with participation, we have conducted a literature review. The review was conducted and the literature structured through three central dimensions of participation, namely: power, knowledge, and (visions of) nature. The article concludes that this structured approach to participation enables us to study more systematically the role of participation and might facilitate the governance and learning processes of coastal networks.
    Comparison of Coral Reef Ecosystems along a Fishing Pressure Gradient
    Weijerman, M.W. ; Fulton, E.A. ; Parrish, F.A. - \ 2013
    PLoS ONE 8 (2013)5. - ISSN 1932-6203
    great-barrier-reef - marine protected areas - small-scale fisheries - ecological indicators - hawaiian archipelago - ocean acidification - climate-change - water-column - management - bay
    Three trophic mass-balance models representing coral reef ecosystems along a fishery gradient were compared to evaluate ecosystem effects of fishing. The majority of the biomass estimates came directly from a large-scale visual survey program; therefore, data were collected in the same way for all three models, enhancing comparability. Model outputs-such as net system production, size structure of the community, total throughput, production, consumption, production-to-respiration ratio, and Finn's cycling index and mean path length-indicate that the systems around the unpopulated French Frigate Shoals and along the relatively lightly populated Kona Coast of Hawai'i Island are mature, stable systems with a high efficiency in recycling of biomass. In contrast, model results show that the reef system around the most populated island in the State of Hawai'i, O'ahu, is in a transitional state with reduced ecosystem resilience and appears to be shifting to an algal-dominated system. Evaluation of the candidate indicators for fishing pressure showed that indicators at the community level (e. g., total biomass, community size structure, trophic level of the community) were most robust (i.e., showed the clearest trend) and that multiple indicators are necessary to identify fishing perturbations. These indicators could be used as performance indicators when compared to a baseline for management purposes. This study shows that ecosystem models can be valuable tools in identification of the system state in terms of complexity, stability, and resilience and, therefore, can complement biological metrics currently used by monitoring programs as indicators for coral reef status. Moreover, ecosystem models can improve our understanding of a system's internal structure that can be used to support management in identification of approaches to reverse unfavorable states.
    Sea@shore: informational governance in marine spatial conflicts at the North Sea
    Toonen, H.M. - \ 2013
    Wageningen University. Promotor(en): Arthur Mol; Jan van Tatenhove; Han Lindeboom. - Wageningen UR : Wageningen UR - ISBN 9789461737748 - 199
    aquatische ecosystemen - mariene gebieden - natuurbescherming - zeereservaten - governance - noordzee - windenergie - zeevisserij - milieubeleid - aquatic ecosystems - marine areas - nature conservation - marine protected areas - governance - north sea - wind power - marine fisheries - environmental policy

    Oceans and seas seem to be an empty space and untouched wilderness, but are in fact heavily used and exploited by different economic activities which have, to greater or lesser extent, environmental impacts. Attention for marine environmental challenges has grown, and is nowadays captured by views on ecosystem-based management. This builds on the notion that the way forward in marine ecosystem protection is an integrated approach that is place- or area-based (so-called spatial turn) and should use the best available scientific information. This research focuses on this spatial turn in marine governance at the North Sea, one of the busiest seas in the world. More specifically, the emphasis on the informational governance of spatial tensions between nature conservation and economic activities at the North Sea.

    Informational governance points to the growing centrality of informational processes in decision-making around environmental challenges. Information is seen as an indispensable resource to use in resolving such challenges and serves as steering tool in governing sustainability. Information provision through all kind of (online) media means is deliberately aimed at influencing decision-making and fostering change of behaviour. In the marine context, informational governance seems to be a new and promising mode of governance. Facilitated by information and communication technologies, information can connect spatially distant environmental issues to people’s daily lives. However, information is not seen as an unproblematic and neutral object, it is at the centre of struggles and debates in decision-making on resolving spatial and environmental challenges at sea.

    This study analyzes how public and private actors through informational governance (try to) resolve spatial conflicts between economic activities and nature conservation at the North Sea, in order to better understand the centripetal force of information in marine governance. Three research questions are guiding the research:

    How can the centrality of information in the spatial turn in marine governance be conceptualized and analyzed? Which actors are involved in informational governance on marine ecosystem protection and use at the North Sea, and how do they (inter-) act in informational processes? How does informational governance contribute to the solving of spatial conflicts between economic activities and nature conservation at the North Sea?

    Chapter 2 gives an account of the research methodology that underpins the research. It explains that the study draws on a non-radical constructivist and critical realist perspective, and presents the research design used in the study: a qualitative case study approach. The selection of the cases has been based on two different rationales. Two cases were selected as they highlight the role of three main actor groups in informational governance at sea. Two other cases explore informational processes in governance arrangements with regard to a specific spatial conflict between marine ecosystem conservation and use(fisheries and offshore wind power development) . In the study, triangulated data gathering served to strengthen the validity and reliability of the research. The mix of methods employed included document review of research reports, policy documents and online information; semi-structured interviews; and participatory observation in several meetings and conferences. In data analysis, an iterative approach following the theoretical propositions of the research was used.

    In Chapter 3, the marine scaping framework is presented to analyse informational governance on marine ecosystem protection and use. Marine scaping through information follows the morphogenetic approach and combines a focus on conditions structuring informational processes with an agency-based approach. The framework distinguishes three scapes that together form the structure-side: seascape, humanscape and mindscape. Seascape represents the connection between the biophysical specifics of the marine ecosystem and the material features of economic activities that are emplaced in this ecosystem. Humanscape points to human organization in social, political and economic terms. Mindscape brings in the ideational dimension, and refers to discourses, ideas, norms, values and perceptions. In the interplay of humanscape with seascape and mindscape, the connection with agency is made, pointing to the initiatives and interactions between actors who, by means of information, strive for sustainability at the North Sea. To assess whether conditions have changed over time, so- called elaboration is added to the framework. In marine governance, the explicit aim is to strive for a balance between ecosystem protection and use, hence to foster elaboration.

    Chapter 3 illustrates the application of the marine scaping framework by a case study about informational initiatives of eNGO officials who want to push the development of a network of Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) at the North Sea forward, in order to achieve “ecological coherence” in marine conservation on the North Sea. It is indicated how and why officials from environmental non-gouvernmental organizations (eNGOs) carried out extensive science-based studies to inform policy-making. This information remains however footloose, because there was no institutional setting where the specific need for a MPA network was (high) on the agenda, and as such, eNGOs had no opportunity to tap their reports into existing informational processes. At the same time, this case study shows how eNGOs build up their so-called “informational capital”.

    The case study presented in Chapter 4 provides a historical understanding of informational interactions between science and policy in the Dutch MPA site selection. By establishing MPAs, nature conservation gains literally a place on the North Sea map. Following international regulations and treaties, North Sea countries are obliged to take the leading role in the designation process, and to use scientific criteria only, based on biological and ecological information. The chapter shows that information about vulnerable and pristine habitats and sea life that needs to be protected was merely lacking or contested. It becomes evident that ecological , socio-economic and political considerations cannot be easily separated. Scientists and policy-makers dealt with the entanglement of interests by sharing tasks in the informational processes, being both information providers and users. It is found that especially in cases of uncertainties and data gaps, judgment by scientists is best characterized as expert judgment and sometimes even gut feeling. However, it is also highlighted that it is necessary to keep science as impartial as possible, and to overtly communicate what and whose information is used.

    Chapter 5 analyses the role of information in incorporating the habitat impact of bottom touching gear in the certification scheme of the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC). This represents a spatial conflict between one of the oldest maritime activities at the North Sea, (plaice) fisheries, and marine conservation. The global MSC labeling program is probably the most famous example of informational governance on marine ecosystem protection and use, as it is almost 20 years old. It fits in neatly with the ideas of informational governance: scientific information to assess the environmental performance of a fishery clash with information derived from the fishery itself and stakeholders. And at the same time, information about the fisheries' performance (through the logo on a fish product) is brought to consumers who in turn can reward sustainable fisheries through their buying power. This case study indicates how eNGOs use informational capital in the informational struggles . This role became especially evident during the assessment of the first North Sea plaice fishery, when WWF started to negotiate information with fishermen beyond the formal MSC assessment procedure in order to creating so-called ‘no take-zones’. The eNGO made sure that informal interactions were not totally disconnected from the assessment process. According to this case study, the two fisheries who agreed on the spatial measure also tried to get most out of the additional spatial measure that became part of their certification. They took the spatial measure up in their message towards (potential) clients, stating their fisheries go even beyond the high sustainability standards of MSC.

    The case study in Chapter 6 concerns informational processes related to the ecological impacts of an economic newcomer at the North Sea, that is offshore wind energy. The chapter highlights how the sustainability promise of this renewable source appears to be ‘dark green’: offshore wind farms (OWFs) contribute to the mitigation of greenhouse gas emissions and to the protection of certain marine life (benthos, fish and some bird species). Remarkably, the ecological differentiation towards offshore wind power remains unexploited. Powerful actors related to this pro-wind discourse, such as the wind sector and large eNGOs, are hesitant to use the dark green message of offshore wind power. In onshore wind debates, their emphasis is on the dominant ‘pro-wind’ discourse about combating climate change which leaves no room for (nuanced) spatial and ecological concerns. It is however stated that including the ecological merits of OWFs in an (existing) informational governance design would not be very complicated, and allows actors to commonly strive for further differentiation in the European electricity market.

    The last chapter recapitulates the general findings of the research. The conclusions suggest that a broad array of actors is involved in informational processes that relate to marine governance and push for more sustainability at the North Sea. These actors can take up five distinctive roles in informational processes, that of information negotiator, information authority, information manager, information verifier and information mediator. This role division might be established in a formal way, although often there is room for actors to take up different roles, sometimes only temporally or informally. The conclusions also point to the theoretical contribution of this research to the theoretical development of informational governance, most notably the lessons learnt from its application to the marine context. The methodological reflections indicate the generalizability of the findings, which are in this research linked to the development of the marine scaping framework and the empirically informed distinction between the five roles of actors in informational governance. Finally, the concluding chapter highlights opportunities for future research, such as studies of informational governance related to other economic activities at the North Sea or in other parts of the world.


    Oceans and seas seem to be an empty space and untouched wilderness, but are in fact heavily used and exploited by different economic activities which have, to greater or lesser extent, environmental impacts. Attention for marine environmental challenges has grown, and is nowadays captured by views on ecosystem-based management. This builds on the notion that the way forward in marine ecosystem protection is an integrated approach that is place- or area-based (so-called spatial turn) and should use the best available scientific information. This research focuses on this spatial turn in marine governance at the North Sea, one of the busiest seas in the world. More specifically, the emphasis on the informational governance of spatial tensions between nature conservation and economic activities at the North Sea.

    Informational governance points to the growing centrality of informational processes in decision-making around environmental challenges. Information is seen as an indispensable resource to use in resolving such challenges and serves as steering tool in governing sustainability. Information provision through all kind of (online) media means is deliberately aimed at influencing decision-making and fostering change of behaviour. In the marine context, informational governance seems to be a new and promising mode of governance. Facilitated by information and communication technologies, information can connect spatially distant environmental issues to people’s daily lives. However, information is not seen as an unproblematic and neutral object, it is at the centre of struggles and debates in decision-making on resolving spatial and environmental challenges at sea.

    This study analyzes how public and private actors through informational governance (try to) resolve spatial conflicts between economic activities and nature conservation at the North Sea, in order to better understand the centripetal force of information in marine governance. Three research questions are guiding the research:

    How can the centrality of information in the spatial turn in marine governance be conceptualized and analyzed? Which actors are involved in informational governance on marine ecosystem protection and use at the North Sea, and how do they (inter-) act in informational processes? How does informational governance contribute to the solving of spatial conflicts between economic activities and nature conservation at the North Sea?

    Chapter 2 gives an account of the research methodology that underpins the research. It explains that the study draws on a non-radical constructivist and critical realist perspective, and presents the research design used in the study: a qualitative case study approach. The selection of the cases has been based on two different rationales. Two cases were selected as they highlight the role of three main actor groups in informational governance at sea. Two other cases explore informational processes in governance arrangements with regard to a specific spatial conflict between marine ecosystem conservation and use(fisheries and offshore wind power development) . In the study, triangulated data gathering served to strengthen the validity and reliability of the research. The mix of methods employed included document review of research reports, policy documents and online information; semi-structured interviews; and participatory observation in several meetings and conferences. In data analysis, an iterative approach following the theoretical propositions of the research was used.

    In Chapter 3, the marine scaping framework is presented to analyse informational governance on marine ecosystem protection and use. Marine scaping through information follows the morphogenetic approach and combines a focus on conditions structuring informational processes with an agency-based approach. The framework distinguishes three scapes that together form the structure-side: seascape, humanscape and mindscape. Seascape represents the connection between the biophysical specifics of the marine ecosystem and the material features of economic activities that are emplaced in this ecosystem. Humanscape points to human organization in social, political and economic terms. Mindscape brings in the ideational dimension, and refers to discourses, ideas, norms, values and perceptions. In the interplay of humanscape with seascape and mindscape, the connection with agency is made, pointing to the initiatives and interactions between actors who, by means of information, strive for sustainability at the North Sea. To assess whether conditions have changed over time, so- called elaboration is added to the framework. In marine governance, the explicit aim is to strive for a balance between ecosystem protection and use, hence to foster elaboration.

    Chapter 3 illustrates the application of the marine scaping framework by a case study about informational initiatives of eNGO officials who want to push the development of a network of Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) at the North Sea forward, in order to achieve “ecological coherence” in marine conservation on the North Sea. It is indicated how and why officials from environmental non-gouvernmental organizations (eNGOs) carried out extensive science-based studies to inform policy-making. This information remains however footloose, because there was no institutional setting where the specific need for a MPA network was (high) on the agenda, and as such, eNGOs had no opportunity to tap their reports into existing informational processes. At the same time, this case study shows how eNGOs build up their so-called “informational capital”.

    The case study presented in Chapter 4 provides a historical understanding of informational interactions between science and policy in the Dutch MPA site selection. By establishing MPAs, nature conservation gains literally a place on the North Sea map. Following international regulations and treaties, North Sea countries are obliged to take the leading role in the designation process, and to use scientific criteria only, based on biological and ecological information. The chapter shows that information about vulnerable and pristine habitats and sea life that needs to be protected was merely lacking or contested. It becomes evident that ecological , socio-economic and political considerations cannot be easily separated. Scientists and policy-makers dealt with the entanglement of interests by sharing tasks in the informational processes, being both information providers and users. It is found that especially in cases of uncertainties and data gaps, judgment by scientists is best characterized as expert judgment and sometimes even gut feeling. However, it is also highlighted that it is necessary to keep science as impartial as possible, and to overtly communicate what and whose information is used.

    Chapter 5 analyses the role of information in incorporating the habitat impact of bottom touching gear in the certification scheme of the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC). This represents a spatial conflict between one of the oldest maritime activities at the North Sea, (plaice) fisheries, and marine conservation. The global MSC labeling program is probably the most famous example of informational governance on marine ecosystem protection and use, as it is almost 20 years old. It fits in neatly with the ideas of informational governance: scientific information to assess the environmental performance of a fishery clash with information derived from the fishery itself and stakeholders. And at the same time, information about the fisheries' performance (through the logo on a fish product) is brought to consumers who in turn can reward sustainable fisheries through their buying power. This case study indicates how eNGOs use informational capital in the informational struggles . This role became especially evident during the assessment of the first North Sea plaice fishery, when WWF started to negotiate information with fishermen beyond the formal MSC assessment procedure in order to creating so-called ‘no take-zones’. The eNGO made sure that informal interactions were not totally disconnected from the assessment process. According to this case study, the two fisheries who agreed on the spatial measure also tried to get most out of the additional spatial measure that became part of their certification. They took the spatial measure up in their message towards (potential) clients, stating their fisheries go even beyond the high sustainability standards of MSC.

    The case study in Chapter 6 concerns informational processes related to the ecological impacts of an economic newcomer at the North Sea, that is offshore wind energy. The chapter highlights how the sustainability promise of this renewable source appears to be ‘dark green’: offshore wind farms (OWFs) contribute to the mitigation of greenhouse gas emissions and to the protection of certain marine life (benthos, fish and some bird species). Remarkably, the ecological differentiation towards offshore wind power remains unexploited. Powerful actors related to this pro-wind discourse, such as the wind sector and large eNGOs, are hesitant to use the dark green message of offshore wind power. In onshore wind debates, their emphasis is on the dominant ‘pro-wind’ discourse about combating climate change which leaves no room for (nuanced) spatial and ecological concerns. It is however stated that including the ecological merits of OWFs in an (existing) informational governance design would not be very complicated, and allows actors to commonly strive for further differentiation in the European electricity market.

    The last chapter recapitulates the general findings of the research. The conclusions suggest that a broad array of actors is involved in informational processes that relate to marine governance and push for more sustainability at the North Sea. These actors can take up five distinctive roles in informational processes, that of information negotiator, information authority, information manager, information verifier and information mediator. This role division might be established in a formal way, although often there is room for actors to take up different roles, sometimes only temporally or informally. The conclusions also point to the theoretical contribution of this research to the theoretical development of informational governance, most notably the lessons learnt from its application to the marine context. The methodological reflections indicate the generalizability of the findings, which are in this research linked to the development of the marine scaping framework and the empirically informed distinction between the five roles of actors in informational governance. Finally, the concluding chapter highlights opportunities for future research, such as studies of informational governance related to other economic activities at the North Sea or in other parts of the world.

    Evaluating the effect of fishery closures: Lessons learnt from the Plaice Box
    Beare, D.J. ; Rijnsdorp, A.D. ; Rockmann, C. ; Tulp, I.Y.M. ; Hal, R. van; Kooten, T. van - \ 2013
    Journal of Sea Research 84 (2013). - ISSN 1385-1101 - p. 49 - 60.
    marine protected areas - north-sea plaice - pleuronectes-platessa l. - beam-trawl effort - solea-solea l. - closed areas - georges bank - management - disturbance - ecosystems
    To reduce discarding of plaice Pleuronectes platessa in the North Sea flatfish fisheries, the major nursery areas were closed to large trawlers in 1995. The area closed was named the ‘Plaice Box’ (PB) and beam trawl effort fell by over 90%,while the exemption fleets of small flatfish beam trawlers, gill netters targeting sole (Solea solea) and shrimp (Crangon crangon) trawlers increased their effort. Contrary to the expectation, plaice landings and biomass declined. The initial support for the PB from the fisheries was lost, whereas other stakeholder groups claimed that any failure was due to the fact that fishing had never been completely prohibited in the area. To evaluate whether the PB has been an effective management measure, the changes in the ecosystem (plaice, demersal fish, benthos) and fisheries are analyzed to test whether the observed changes are due to the PB or to changes in the environment unrelated to the PB. Juvenile growth rate of plaice decreased and juveniles moved to deeper waters outside the PB. Demersal fish biomass decreased, whereas the abundance of epibenthic predators (Asterias rubens and Cancer pagurus) increased in the PB. Endobenthos, in particular the main food items of plaice (polychaetes and small bivalves) remained stable or decreased both inside and outside the PB. Currently catches of both plaice and sole from within the PB are lower than in the late 1980s and the exemption fleet often prefers to fish outside the Plaice Box alongside much larger competitors. It is concluded that the observed changes are most likely related to changes in the North Sea ecosystem, which may be related to changes in eutrophication and temperature. It is less likely that they are related to the change in fishing. This case study highlights the importance of setting testable objectives and an appropriate evaluation framework including both ecological and socio-economic indicators when implementing closed areas
    Multifunctionele Platforms: Perspectief voor de toekomst?
    Stuiver, M. ; Gerritsen, A.L. ; Fontein, R.J. ; Agricola, H.J. - \ 2012
    Aquacultuur 27 (2012)5. - ISSN 1382-2764 - p. 6 - 12.
    mariene gebieden - mariene ecologie - zeeaquacultuur - zeereservaten - visserij - windmolenpark - innovaties - ecosystemen - duurzaamheid (sustainability) - biomassa - mariene parken - noordzee - marine areas - marine ecology - marine aquaculture - marine protected areas - fisheries - wind farms - innovations - ecosystems - sustainability - biomass - marine parks - north sea
    Anno 2012 bestaan ze in de verbeelding, op papier en als experiment: Multifunctionele platforms op zee of Multi Use Platforms on Sea (MUPS), waarop maritieme activiteiten met elkaar zijn geclusterd. De kern van het concept is om op een locatie op zee meerdere economische activiteiten te combineren en wel zo dat het ecosysteem en de mens er optimaal van kunnen profiteren zonder elkaar wederzijds te belemmeren.
    Baseline survey of anthropogenic pressures for the Lac Bay ecosystem, Bonaire
    Debrot, A.O. - \ 2012
    Den Helder : IMARES (Report / IMARES Wageningen UR C092/12) - 71
    natuurbescherming - ecosysteembeheer - menselijke invloed - verontreiniging - recreatieactiviteiten - zeereservaten - bonaire - nature conservation - ecosystem management - human impact - pollution - recreational activities - marine protected areas - bonaire
    Lac Bay of Bonaire is a shallow non-estuarine lagoon of about 700 hectares, separated from the open sea by a shallow coral barrier-reef. It possesses the only major concentration of seagrass beds and mangroves of the island. It is a designated Ramsar wetland of international significance, an Birdlife International IBA (Important Bird Area) and also fulfills a critical fish nursery function for the reefs of the island. The bay has consequently been designated as a protected area and is managed by Stinapa-Bonaire. The bay has been losing effective seagrass nursery habitat surface and quality as a consequence of mangrove-driven land acclamation. This in-turn is potentially being exacerbated by human-mediated eutrophication and erosion caused by agricultural and animal husbandry in the wider watershed, as well as other factors. The number of visitors to Bonaire and to Lac has been increasing dramatically over the last decades particularly from cruise ships. Yet little has been done to document and map the various types of human use that occur on and in the vicinity of the bay which might affect the ecological carrying capacity of the bay and the critical roles it plays. In this survey we do preliminary mapping and analysis of the level and distribution of human activity in and around Lac and discuss what possible threats these may entail for the environment of the bay.
    Optimal management of marine resources: spatial planning of multiple uses by multiple actors
    Punt, M.J. - \ 2011
    Wageningen University. Promotor(en): Ekko van Ierland; J.H. Stel, co-promotor(en): Hans-Peter Weikard. - [S.l.] : S.n. - ISBN 9789461730268 - 168
    economie van natuurlijke hulpbronnen - natuurlijke hulpbronnen - hulpbronnenbeheer - oceanen - marien milieu - ruimtelijke ordening - zeereservaten - windmolens - natural resource economics - natural resources - resource management - oceans - marine environment - physical planning - marine protected areas - windmills

    Ocean space supplies mankind with a multitude of goods and services and yet it is under severe pressure of pollution and over-extraction of resources. To extract goods and services sustainably and to protect vulnerable ecosystems, we need to manage human activities in the marine domain.

    Three essential elements characterize the management of marine resources. First we are dealing with multiple uses. These uses can be conflicting, neutral or complimentary and therefore when we manage one use we should also address the effects on other uses. Second these uses are inherently spatial. Conflicts can at least partly be avoided and complementarities can be improved with careful spatial planning. Therefore we should address the spatial effects of the multiple uses when managing these activities. Third we are dealing with multiple actors. Depending on the spatial scale we look at these actors can be representatives of the several user groups that have conflicting interests, or they can be countries trying to reach agreements over the use of shared resources.

    In this thesis I investigate how Marine Spatial Planning and one of its tools, Marine Protected Areas (MPAs), can assist us with the management of ocean space. These instruments and their associated incentives are highly influenced by the regulatory framework, and this framework in turn depends on the spatial scale. I investigate three scale levels: the local level, defined as the Exclusive Economic Zone of a single country, the regional level, defined as a regional sea that is fully claimed by a number of countries, and the global level defined as the High Seas where all countries have access within the limits of the UN Law of the Sea.

    On the local level I investigate the spatial planning of offshore wind farms with an optimization model that allocates offshore wind farms under ecological constraints. The model results show that space is an essential element to derive an optimal management plan of the EEZ, because the allocation of offshore wind farms is highly dependent on both spatial economic factors such as location costs and ecological restrictions. The results show that Marine Spatial Planning is necessary, because only in this way can possible synergies between e.g. offshore wind farms and environmental protection be identified and eventually realized. The model can assist with the first steps in Marine Spatial Planning of offshore wind farms; its results can be used as a basis for conversation and consultation with stakeholders.

    On the regional scale I investigate how the multiple use nature of MPAs affects the incentives of countries to assign these MPAs. To this end, I develop a game theoretic model in which two specific uses, fisheries and nature conservation, by multiple countries are considered in a strategic framework. The results of the paper suggest that EU marine policy may help to secure the highest possible benefits from these MPAs, but only if policies force countries to cooperate and consider all possible benefits of MPAs. In fact cooperation on a single issue may give a worse outcome than the non-cooperative equilibrium. The results also indicate that cooperation may be hard to achieve because of defector incentives, and therefore policy measures should be strict in enforcing cooperation on all possible uses of MPAs.

    At the same scale level I study how species distributions and different ways of accounting for the contributions of others affects MPA assignment as a tool for biodiversity conservation. With a spatial game theoretic model I investigate three different conservation regimes: full cooperation, strategic non-cooperation, and conservation autarky. Under strategic non-cooperation countries anticipate protection by the other, under conservation autarky they ignore these contributions. The main results show that unique species occurring in a single ecosystem are relatively well protected, even when countries are free-riding. Species that occur in multiple ecosystems on both sides of the border in contrast are under non-cooperation under-protected, compared to full cooperation. This is in part caused by location leakage, i.e. protecting a number of species less because they are protected by others. On the one hand conservation autarky eliminates location leakage and generates larger MPAs at the border. On the other hand these MPA sizes are often too high from a global perspective. From this we can conclude that international conservation efforts should mainly focus on transboundary occurring species. Also, although conservation autarky is not a first-best solution, if it occurs, e.g. through social norms, it is certainly better than strategic non-cooperation.

    At the third level I study the effect of the assignment of internationally recognized MPAs in the High Seas on the formation of Regional Fisheries Management Organisations (RFMO) with a game theoretic model. MPAs are assigned through a weakest-link game: because everyone has to agree on an MPA before it actually can be protected, it can only be as large as the strongest opposing player wants it to be. I find that if countries have equal costs and benefits MPAs of optimal size are implemented but these have no effect on stability of RFMOs; the only stable coalition is the coalition where everyone acts alone. In the case where countries face different fishing costs, MPAs stabilize a number of extra coalitions such that more and larger coalitions are stable when an MPA is present compared to the no MPA case. Full cooperation, however, is not necessarily reached. A general conclusion is therefore that the assignment of MPAs in the High Seas can not only improve the fisheries through direct effects such as insurance and possible increases in catches, but also indirect by contributing in a positive way to the formation of RFMOs.

    Three important conclusions can be drawn from this thesis as a whole. First Marine Spatial Planning and Marine Protected Areas can contribute in a positive way to the management of human activities in ocean space. Second, neither of them is a silver bullet. Both need careful implementation, where all uses are accounted for, and especially the public good aspects of MPAs needs to be addressed. Third the success of MPAs (and as such of Marine Spatial Planning) is not only highly dependent on the incentives and social norms but also on the implementation scale.

    Evaluating the suitability of coupled biophysical models for fishery management
    Hinrichsen, H.H. ; Dickey-Collas, M. ; Huret, M. ; Peck, M.A. - \ 2011
    ICES Journal of Marine Science 68 (2011)7. - ISSN 1054-3139 - p. 1478 - 1487.
    cod gadus-morhua - arcto-norwegian cod - sprat sprattus-sprattus - marine protected areas - early-life stages - north-sea - atlantic cod - environmental variability - pelagic juveniles - climate-change
    The potential role of coupled biophysical models in enhancing the conservation, management, and recovery of fish stocks is assessed, with emphasis on anchovy, cod, herring, and sprat in European waters. The assessment indicates that coupled biophysical models are currently capable of simulating transport patterns, along with temperature and prey fields within marine ecosystems; they therefore provide insight into the variability of early-life-stage dynamics and connectivity within stocks. Moreover, the influence of environmental variability on potential recruitment success may be discerned from model hindcasts. Based on case studies, biophysical modelling results are shown to be capable of shedding light on whether stock management frameworks need re-evaluation. Hence, key modelling products were identified that will contribute to the development of viable stock recovery plans and management strategies. The study also suggests that approaches combining observation, process knowledge, and numerical modelling could be a promising way forward in understanding and simulating the dynamics of marine fish populations
    Examining the assumptions of integrated coastal management: Stakeholder agendas and elite cooption in Babuyan Islands, Philippines
    Larsen, R.K. ; Acebes, J.M. ; Belen, A. - \ 2011
    Ocean & Coastal Management 54 (2011)1. - ISSN 0964-5691 - p. 10 - 18.
    marine protected areas - resource-management - sustainable management - conservation - policy - science - forest - water
    In the Philippines, Integrated Coastal Management (ICM) represents the dominant response to narratives of ecosystem decline. However, there are persistent challenges to implementation, manifested in continued resource degradation, questioning of the exercise of stakeholder involvement and rising resource conflicts. This paper examines the implementation process and how the assumptions embodied in the ICM regime meet the local reality in one group of islands in the Philippine archipelago. The evidence shows how the transformation towards a supposed equilibrium state of coastal ecosystems is undermined in the face of diverging stakeholder agendas. Expected actors are disempowered by the incoherence between the policy owners’ worldview and reality, paving the way for unethical influence from elite alliances. This is coupled with a deepening of the dominance of state, international development banks, foreign aid agencies, and NGOs in promoting their respective interests. In localities such as the Babuyan Islands, when assumptions of ICM collapse it has destructive consequences for fisherfolk and the coastal environment. We conclude that if ICM is to foster an effective and equitable correction of current unsustainable exploitation patterns, then there is a need to institute improved accountability mechanisms in the devolved governance system as well as taking seriously the espoused commitment to stakeholder involvement in determining the goals and assumptions of ICM
    Critical Systems Thinking for the Facilitation of Conservation Planning in Philippine Coastal Management
    Larsen, R.K. - \ 2011
    Systems Research and Behavioral Science 28 (2011)1. - ISSN 1092-7026 - p. 63 - 76.
    marine protected areas - resource-management - water - sustainability - policy
    In Critical Systems Thinking, the notion of boundary judgements represents a constructionist view on knowing as the bounding of components of reality into knowable objects. Cognitive boundary judgements determine observations (facts) and evaluations (values), which knowers appreciate and act in relation to. Werner Ulrich’s method of dialogical boundary critique and the framework of Critical Systems Heuristics (CSH) are intended to enable citizen participation in Western democracies through acknowledgement of legitimate competencies in public and corporate dialogues. This paper investigates the application of this methodology in Philippine coastal resource management. The conclusions are based on stakeholder-based action planning carried out between November 2007 and May 2008 in the Babuyan group of islands, bounded by the Balintang and Babuyan Channels. It argues that dialogical boundary critique requires significant adaptation if it is to provide a liberating language for participants in Philippine resource management dilemmas shaped by multiple and conflicting knowledge claims under conditions of significant controversy
    Biodiversity of the Saba Bank supports status of Particularly Sensitive Sea Area (PSSA)
    Meesters, H.W.G. - \ 2010
    IJmuiden : IMARES (Report / IMARES Wageningen UR no. C014/10) - 17
    natuurbescherming - saba - biodiversiteit - atollen - larven - zeereservaten - nature conservation - saba - biodiversity - atolls - larvae - marine protected areas
    This report contains a study regarding the biodiversity of the Saba Bank, one of the three largest atolls in the world. All scientific and anecdotic evidence suggests that the area is a hot spot of biodiversity and one of the few areas in the Caribbean that is still in a relatively pristine condition. The atoll is likely also important as a source of larvae for other areas in the region because of its enormous dimensions and diverse habitats. Major damage however may already be inflicted by the anchoring of large oil tankers. More scientific research is necessary with regards to the damage inflicted by anchoring and to the sustainability of current fishing practices, but to date there is already sufficient data to call for strong protection of the Saba Bank as soon as possible. Therefore, an application to the International Maritime Organization (IMO) to designate the Saba Bank as a Particularly Sensitive Sea Area (PSSA) in order to prevent possibly irreversible damage to the ecosystem and to enable sustainable protection of it’s vulnerable resources seems crucial and urgent.
    Unsuitability of TAC management within an ecosystem approach to fisheries: An ecological perspective
    Reiss, H. ; Greenstreet, S.P.R. ; Robinson, L. ; Ehrich, S. ; Jorgensen, L.L. ; Piet, G.J. ; Wolff, W.J. - \ 2010
    Journal of Sea Research 63 (2010)2. - ISSN 1385-1101 - p. 85 - 92.
    marine protected areas - sea fish community - north-sea - mixed fisheries - sustainable use - catch rates - indicators - resources - fleet - simulation
    Fisheries management in European waters is gradually moving from a single-species perspective towards a more holistic ecosystem approach to management (EAM), acknowledging the need to take all ecosystem components into account. Prerequisite within an EAM is the need for management processes that directly influence the ecological effects of fishing, such as the mortality of target and non-target species. Up until recently, placing limits on the quantities of fish that can be landed, through the imposition of annual total allowable catches (TACs) for the target species, has been the principal management mechanism employed. However, pressure on non-target components of marine ecosystems is more closely linked to prevailing levels of fishing activity, so only if TACs are closely related to subsequent fishing effort will TAC management serve to control the broader ecosystem impacts of fishing. We show that in the mixed fisheries that characterise the North Sea, the linkage between variation in TAC and the resulting fishing effort is in fact generally weak. Reliance solely on TACs to regulate fishing activity is therefore unlikely to mitigate the impacts of fishing on non-target species. Consequently, we conclude that the relationship between TACs and effort is insufficient for TACs to be used as the principal management tool within an EAM. The implications, and some alternatives, for fisheries management are discussed
    Selecting MPAs to conserve ground fish biodiversity: the consequences of failing to account for catchability in survey trawls
    Fraser, H.M. ; Greenstreet, S.P.R. ; Piet, G.J. - \ 2009
    ICES Journal of Marine Science 66 (2009)1. - ISSN 1054-3139 - p. 82 - 89.
    marine protected areas - north-sea fish - fisheries management - community structure - ecosystem approach - species-diversity - adjacent fishery - reef fishes - long-term - reserves
    Fishing has affected North Sea ground fish species diversity. De. ning Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) to address this will rely on ground fish surveys. Species-specific catch efficiencies vary between trawl gears, and apparent species diversity distributions are influenced by the type of gear used in each survey. It may be that no single survey depicts actual diversity distributions. Two MPA scenarios designed to protect ground fish species diversity are described, the first based on unadjusted International Bottom Trawl Survey data and the second based on the same data adjusted to take account of catchability. Spatial overlap between these scenarios is low. Assuming that the adjusted data best describe the actual species diversity distribution, the level of diversity safeguarded by MPAs, based on unadjusted data, is determined. A fishing effort redistribution model is used to estimate the increase in fishing activity that is likely to occur in MPAs that take catchability into account, if closed areas based solely on the unadjusted ground fish data were implemented. Our results highlight the need to take survey-gear catchability into account when designating MPAs to address fish-species diversity issues
    Noordzeereservaten
    Lindeboom, H.J. - \ 2009
    Vakblad Natuur Bos Landschap 6 (2009)5. - ISSN 1572-7610 - p. 10 - 11.
    habitats - ecologie - geomorfologie - noordzee - aquatische ecologie - zeereservaten - habitats - ecology - geomorphology - north sea - aquatic ecology - marine protected areas
    De afgelopen decennia begint het besef door te dringen dat het groeiende menselijke gebruik van de zee grote effecten heeft op het mariene milieu. Ongebreideld doorgaan met visserij en ander grootschalig gebruik leidt tot de teloorgang van unieke en waardevolle zeesystemen. In de EU-Kaderrichtlijn Mariene Strategie van vorig jaar juni staat als uitgangspunt: ¿Het mariene milieu is een kostbaar erfgoed dat moet worden beschermd, behouden en waar mogelijk hersteld¿.¿ Ook Nederland zal zich hieraan moeten houden. Daarom heeft het ministerie van LNV verschillende gebieden aangewezen als zeereservaten: Natura2000-gebieden in de Noordzee. Waarschijnlijk zal vooral de visserij in die gebieden moeten veranderen. Meer valt er te lezen in: "Ecologische atlas Noordzee ten behoeve van gebiedsbescherming"
    Marine Protected Areas and commercial fisheries: the existing fishery in potential protected areas, and a modelling study of the impact of protected areas on North Sea Plaice
    Dekker, W. ; Deerenberg, C.M. ; Daan, N. ; Storbeck, F. ; Brinkman, A.G. - \ 2009
    IJmuiden : IMARES (Report / Wageningen IMARES C066/09) - 50
    natuurbeleid - eu regelingen - zeereservaten - habitatrichtlijn - visserij-ecologie - visserij - scenario-analyse - noordzee - nature conservation policy - eu regulations - marine protected areas - habitats directive - fisheries ecology - fisheries - scenario analysis - north sea
    Dit rapport presenteert resultaten van onderzoek, dat in 2005/2006 is uitgevoerd. In het kader van de Europese Vogel en Habitat Richtlijnen dienen lidstaten te beschermen gebieden op zee aan te wijzen, wat mogelijk zou leiden tot beperkingen van visserijactiviteiten in deze gebieden. De vraag was, welke invloed dit zou hebben op de vis en visserij. In dit onderzoek is enerzijds een statische beschrijving opgesteld van de visserijinspanning en de vangsten in de voorgestelde gebieden, en is anderzijds een eerste analyse (simulatie-model) opgezet van het lange-termijn effect op migrerende vis (schol). Dit onderzoek werd eind 2006 afgerond met een concept-rapport.
    Using MPAs to address regional-scale ecological objectives in the North Sea: modelling the effects of fishing effort displacement
    Greenstreet, S.P.R. ; Fraser, H.M. ; Piet, G.J. - \ 2009
    ICES Journal of Marine Science 66 (2009)1. - ISSN 1054-3139 - p. 90 - 100.
    marine protected areas - fisheries management - ecosystem approach - reserve design - community structure - species-diversity - factory trawlers - adjacent fishery - predatory fish - scotian shelf
    The use of Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) to address regional-scale objectives as part of an ecosystem approach to management in the North Sea is examined. Ensuring that displacement of fishing activity does not negate the ecological benefits gained from MPAs is a major concern. Two scenarios are considered: using MPAs to safeguard important areas for groundfish species diversity and using them to reduce fishing impacts on benthic invertebrates. Appropriate MPAs were identified using benthic invertebrate and fish abundance data. Fishing effort redistribution was modelled using international landings and fishing effort data. Closing 7.7% of the North Sea to protect groundfish species diversity increased the fishing impact on benthic invertebrates. Closing 7.3% of the North Sea specifically to protect benthic invertebrates reduced fishing mortality by just 1.7¿3.8%, but when combined with appropriate reductions in total allowable catch (TAC), 16.2¿17.4% reductions in fishing mortality were achieved. MPAs on their own are unlikely to achieve significant regional-scale ecosystem benefits, because local gains are largely negated by fishing effort displacement into the remainder of the North Sea. However, in combination with appropriate TAC reductions, the effectiveness of MPAs may be enhanced.
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