MERP science summaries

Publication type: Report

Author(s): Austen, M; Blackwell, P; Heath, M; Ainsworth, G; Martino, S

Number of pages: 300

ISBN: 9780857094278

Linkages between the ecosystem and services can affect trade-offs in our effects on, or exploitation of different ecosystem services. By enabling simultaneous consideration of multiple ecosystem services MERP aims to support management of the environment and sustainable use of resources. The UK marine environment is relatively data rich, yet the links between ecosystem and ecosystem services were poorly described. For example, much of the evidence gathered to document and monitor change in marine ecosystems for other purposes (e.g. Marine Strategy Framework Directive monitoring for GES) can be linked to changes in services. A conceptual model has been developed that links ecosystem components and key processes to four services they provide and highlights the trade-offs between them.

The model was subsequently further developed to include pressures and management mitigating measures.This was used to build the first structure for a Bayesian Belief Network (BBN) that could synthesise MERP model outputs and empirical data, together with additional data and expert judgement. The intention is that the models can be used to communicate wider natural capital and ecosystem service implications of management measures with managers and stakeholders and applied to available and new marine data to facilitate evidence-based marine management.


Fish, ecosystems, trade-offs
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