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Title: Human activities in the deep North Atlantic
Author: Benn, Angela R.
ISNI:       0000 0004 2715 3824
Awarding Body: University of Southampton
Current Institution: University of Southampton
Date of Award: 2011
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To achieve long-term planning and whole-ecosystem management of the oceans requires data on the extent of human impacts and the wider availability of data on human activities. This study, which aimed to provide the first detailed assessment of the extent of human activities in the deep North East Atlantic, OSPAR Maritime Area, revealed that during 2005 bottom-trawl fisheries affected an area of seafloor at least one order of magnitude greater than all the other the activities in the study combined. It was also found that identifying data sources, access to data and data quality presented significant barriers to implementing whole-ecosystem management and governance in the North East Atlantic. Additional work, in the North West Atlantic, to investigate the availability of data on human activities and to identify examples of best practice, revealed similar problems to those encountered in the North East Atlantic. Legal and policy frameworks and reporting requirements for human activities in the North East Atlantic were reviewed and recommendations made. This study identified access to fisheries’ vessel-monitoring data (VMS) and data quality as particular problems. Currently the location of bottom-trawling can only be identified by analysis of these data. This information is vital for ecosystem management. Current European Commission legislation, regarding access to environmental data and more specifically fisheries data, were discussed and the responses to applications made to European Member States for VMS data were analyzed. The results revealed a variety of interpretations of the Regulation. While the ecosystem approach is incorporated into many conventions and agreements, its implementation is not straightforward. For whole-ecosystem governance and management of the oceans, it is necessary to move beyond the traditional sector-based, piecemeal approaches. To do so requires significant improvements in availability and management of human-activities data and a shift in thinking towards a more integrated approach.
Supervisor: Weaver, Philip P. E. ; Billett, David ; van den Hove, Sybille Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: GC Oceanography ; QH301 Biology