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Sources of marine litter Sources of marine litter
Marine litter is “any persistent, manufactured or processed solid material discarded, disposed of or abandoned in the marine and coastal environment” (Galgani et al. 2010). It reaches the marine environment through deliberate disposal or unintentional discharge, either at sea or from land by way of rivers, drainage systems and wind.
19 Nov 2013 - by GRID-Arendal
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Mediterranean cumulative impact model Mediterranean cumulative impact model
None of the factors affecting the Mediterranean Sea and its coasts, along with its inhabitants, exist in isolation. Different pressures act over time and in unison to affect the resilience of ecosystems and their ability to deliver ecosystem services. Increasing and multiple uses of ocean space increase the chances that certain threats will cause more impact when occurring simultaneously than the additive effect of individual pressures.
19 Nov 2013 - by GRID-Arendal
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Sources of environmental impact on the Mediterranean Sea Sources of environmental impact on the Mediterranean Sea
The National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis (NCEAS) has undertaken modelling to perform comprehensive spatial analysis and mapping of human pressures throughout the Mediterranean Basin. This work builds on a previous global analysis of cumulative human impacts (Halpern et al. 2008), including additional information to better reflect the specific pressures and ecosystems of the Mediterranean Sea and coasts. A total of 22 spatial da...
19 Nov 2013 - by GRID-Arendal
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Number of species in IUCN Red List categories from Mediterranean countries Number of species in IUCN Red List categories from Mediterranean countries
Mediterranean species and habitats face a number of pressures from human activities, including over-exploitation; degradation of critical habitats; invasive alien species; pollution, including excess nutrients, toxic pollutants, and litter; and the use of non-selective fishery gear (e.g., drift nets and purse seine nets) (UNEP/ MAP/MED POL 2005). While there is no evidence of species loss in the Mediterranean, the status of a number of speci...
19 Nov 2013 - by GRID-Arendal
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Seabed habitats in Western Mediterranean Seabed habitats in Western Mediterranean
The Mediterranean Basin has a wide array of habitats that include sea grass beds, intact rocky shorelines, persistent frontal systems, estuaries, underwater canyons, deepwater coral assemblages and sea mounts (UNEP/MAP 2012).
19 Nov 2013 - by GRID-Arendal
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Biodiversity in the Mediterranean Biodiversity in the Mediterranean
Species diversity in the Mediterranean Basin tends to increase from east to west with 43 % of known species occurring in the Eastern Mediterranean, 49 % in the Adriatic, and 87 % in the Western Mediterranean (UNEP/MAP 2012). The Western Mediterranean also has more endemic species than other regions of the sea. In addition, its proximity to the Atlantic Ocean and its seasonal frontal and upwelling systems provide nutrients. The Western Basin ...
19 Nov 2013 - by GRID-Arendal
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Composition of benthic communities Composition of benthic communities
Benthic communities are among the first to disappear under conditions of heavy stress. Benthic organisms play an important ecological role by reworking the sediments, which affects the flux of nutrients across the sediment-water interface. Thus their loss is a liability to the ecosystem as a whole. In undisturbed areas in the eastern Mediterranean, benthic communities have a high diversity of species, consisting of polychaetes (50–65%),molluscs...
19 Nov 2013 - by GRID-Arendal
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Hypoxia in the Mediterranean Sea Hypoxia in the Mediterranean Sea
Hypoxic (low oxygen)conditions can be caused by eutrophication. The decrease in oxygen is due both to algae reducing dissolved oxygen through respiration and the decomposition of dead algae. In extreme cases, oxygen depletion can result in the death of marine organisms.
19 Nov 2013 - by GRID-Arendal
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Mean surface productivity and eutrophic and hypoxic hot spots in the Mediterranean Mean surface productivity and eutrophic and hypoxic hot spots in the Mediterranean
Eutrophic areas are high primary productivity zones due to excessive nutrients and therefore subject to algal blooms resulting in poor water quality. This can also lead to hypoxic conditions. Hypoxia is the condition where oxygen dissolved in water becomes reduced in concentration to a point where is becomes detrimental to aquatic organisms living in the system.
19 Nov 2013 - by GRID-Arendal
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Fertilizer use and nitrogen release in the Mediterranean region Fertilizer use and nitrogen release in the Mediterranean region
Agriculture is the largest non-point source of pollutants in the Mediterranean (UNEP/MAP 2011). Agriculture-related nutrients enter the sea through groundwater, lakes, wetlands, and rivers. Nitrogen consumption per surface unit of arable land is highest in countries of the northern watershed, with the exception of Bosnia-Herzegovina and Albania. In contrast, point-source release is highest on the eastern coast of the Adriatic. Other point sou...
19 Nov 2013 - by GRID-Arendal
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Sources of emissions of nutrients in the Mediterranean region, 2008 Sources of emissions of nutrients in the Mediterranean region, 2008
Nutrients in seawater present a paradox. Nutrients are, of course, essential for life. In the oligotrophic environment of the Mediterranean, the ecosystems with the most nutrients are generally the most productive and diverse. At the same time, many Mediterranean nearshore areas are threatened by nutrient over-enrichment due to coastal and watershed development. Many developed coastal areas suffer particularly from increased influx of dissolve...
19 Nov 2013 - by GRID-Arendal
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Sea surface temperature increase Sea surface temperature increase
Climate change accelerates the rates of hydrologically-influenced degradation and can compound its impacts. According to CIESM, Western Mediterranean waters are experiencing a substantial warming trend (+0,2°C in last ten years), which could have a drastic impact on species adapted to more uniform temperatures, especially deeper water organisms accustomed to a near-constant temperature of 13°C.
19 Nov 2013 - by GRID-Arendal
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Sea level variations in the Mediterranean Sea level variations in the Mediterranean
Sea level is rising significantly in the Eastern Mediterranean, with an average 12 cm rise registered on the Levantine coast since 1992. However, causes are not yet known, and a cause-effect relationship with climate change has not yet been established.
19 Nov 2013 - by GRID-Arendal
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Demersal destructive fishing in the Mediterranean Sea Demersal destructive fishing in the Mediterranean Sea
Fishing is one of the major contributors to habitat damage in the Mediterranean Sea. Most of this damage comes from trawling operations. Since fishing is most intense in the Western Mediterranean, it is not surprising that impacts on marine habitats are particularly severe there (UNEP/MAP 2012). Benthic, or sea-bottom, habitats and the communities associated with them are especially vulnerable.
19 Nov 2013 - by GRID-Arendal
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Aquaculture in the Mediterranean and Black seas Aquaculture in the Mediterranean and Black seas
Aquaculture is the fastest growing food sector in the world, with about one-third of global fish consumption coming from farmed fish.More than half of aquaculture production in the Mediterranean comes from western European countries (58 %).
19 Nov 2013 - by GRID-Arendal
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Aquaculture production in the Mediterranean Aquaculture production in the Mediterranean
Aquaculture is the fastest growing food sector in the world, with about one-third of global fish consumption coming from framed fish. Although the Mediterranean region has a long history of fish farming, aquaculture and particularly mariculture have undergone a dramatic expansion since the 1990s. Decreasing wild fish stocks, combined with increasing consumer demand for fish, have spurred growth of the industry.
19 Nov 2013 - by GRID-Arendal
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Mediterranean Sea fish landings Mediterranean Sea fish landings
Total fish landings increased exponentially from 1950 to 1980, with current production fluctuating around 800.000 tonnes annually (Garcia 2011) during the last three decades. Of that total, 85 % comes from six countries: Italy, Turkey, Greece, Spain, Tunisia and Algeria (UNEP/MAP 2012).
19 Nov 2013 - by GRID-Arendal
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Non-indigenous species over the 20th Century Non-indigenous species over the 20th Century
Both the number and rate of non-indigenous introductions to the Mediterranean have been increasing in recent years (UNEP/ MAP 2009). Currently, about a thousand non-indigenous aquatic species have been identified in the Mediterranean Sea, with a new species being introduced roughly every ten days. About 500 of these species are well-established; many others are one-off observations (UNEP/MAP 2012). In addition, there are also terrestrial no...
19 Nov 2013 - by GRID-Arendal
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Non-indigenous species Non-indigenous species
Maritime transportation and aquaculture are the main ways non-indigenous species enter the Western Basin of the Mediterranean. Migration through the Suez Canal is responsible for most non-indigenous species in the Eastern Basin.
19 Nov 2013 - by GRID-Arendal
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Major types of marine litter in the Mediterranean Major types of marine litter in the Mediterranean
A large proportion of marine litter is plastics (UNEP 2009). The impact of large plastic material on the environment has been widely studied. Effects include entanglement of marine animals in plastic and ingestion of plastic by marine organisms.
19 Nov 2013 - by GRID-Arendal
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