New project links climate change, marine biodiversity and ecosystem services


FutureMARES is an EU-funded research project examining the relations between climate change, marine biodiversity and ecosystem services. It hosted its kick-off meeting online through 22-24 September.

Project partners from over 15 countries joined via video conference to discuss the project’s goals, approaches, workflows and expected results. Topics discussed over the three days included: 

The goals and methods of each work package

The project’s three Nature-based Solutions (NBS) to adapt to and mitigate climate change effects: Effective Restoration, Effective Conservation, and Sustainable Harvesting of Marine Resources 

Joint presentations of selected storylines (regional applications of NBS) which show what the effects of climate change means for the biodiversity and functioning of systems in specific environments)

External cooperation with stakeholders and sister project MaCoBioS (Marine Coastal Ecosystems
Biodiversity and Services in a Changing World)

The project’s final products and end-users

There were also discussions on relevant EU policy developments, and the exploitable results and lessons learned from ongoing and finished EU projects based on Nature-Based Solutions.

The project is conducting its research and cooperating with marine organisations and the public in several Case Study Regions across the globe. The goal is to provide science-based policy advice on how best to use NBS to protect future biodiversity and ecosystem services in a future climate.

Dr Ana Queirós, PML Senior Benthic Ecologist, said: "We are delighted to be part of this new European-wide initiative to support coastal and ocean biodiversity, ecosystem services and function. Through this new 4 year Horizon 2020 programme FutureMARES, PML will be leading the development of new capability to project the impacts of climate change on species of high value to real-life conservation, restoration and harvesting programmes in the UK and its EU partner countries.

"We will be working with practitioners around the EU to support the co-development of climate-smart management strategies. For instance, more locally to PML, we will be working the North Devon UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. I am personally thrilled to be the PML lead within this exciting new research programme, which came together after 2 solid years of preparation and development, and to work with other leading EU research institutions and high level global ocean stakeholders and practitioners, towards a better management of UK and EU marine species and habitats."

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