Local solutions to manage the effects of global climate change on a marine ecosystem: a process guide for marine resource managers

Higgason, K.D. and Brown, M., 2009. ICES Journal of Marine Science

Methodological article
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Abstract

The marine environment plays an important role in controlling the amount of CO2 that remains within the earth’s atmosphere, but it has not received as much attention as the terrestrial environment regarding climate-change effects, mitigation programmes, and action plans. Potential physical effects of climate change within the marine environment, including ocean acidification, changes in winds that drive upwelling and ocean circulation patterns, increasing global sea surface temperatures, and sea level rise, can result in dramatic changes within marine and coastal ecosystems. Often, marine resource managers feel overwhelmed by the magnitude of this issue and are therefore uncertain how to begin to take action. It may seem that they do not have the time, funding, or staff to take on a challenge as large as climate change, and fail to act as a result. Using NOAA’s Gulf of the Farallones National Marine Sanctuary as a case study, this paper outlines the need to act now and presents an easy-to-use process guide, providing managers options to incorporate effectively the influences of climate change into management strategies, as well as mitigate these influences through community outreach and a reduction in workplace emissions.

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