Marine Newsletter #2 2012 – February

Highlights from the Marine Division at GRID-Arendal for February 2012

Featured Project

TEEB for the Oceans
It is estimated that about two-thirds of planetary ecosystem-services are provided by ocean and coastal ecosystems. These services, from carbon management to pollution control and living and non-living resources have yet to be considered systemically by the human economy. The intrinsic value of the ocean as a foundational component of the overarching natural economy is also left unaccounted for in human transactions.

The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity (TEEB) study is a major international initiative to draw attention to the global economic benefits of biodiversity. GRID-Arendal, in collaboration with Duke University's Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions, and under the auspices of UNEP's TEEB Secretariat and UNEP's Freshwater and Marine Ecosystems Branch, is leading a rapid effort to provide thoughts and insights about the benefits of a TEEB for the Oceans study. Our effort – a Think Piece – looks specifically at the types of marine management issues and policy that require better information on the economics of marine ecosystems and biodiversity.

TEEB For the Oceans should build on the notoriety, credibility, and vision of the original TEEB. It should provide real world examples and clear guidance on the policies that cannot be properly and effectively implemented without a better accounting for ecosystem services. TEEB For the Oceans can show decision makers at all levels how new policies, practices, markets, and agreements can improve the ecological and economic productivity and sustainability of marine ecosystems around the world.

The TEEB Oceans Discussion Paper Why Value the Oceans? can be downloaded here.

For more information, please contact Yannick Beaudoin.

Data and Products

Reminder: Call for maps
In the previous newsletter we announced a call for maps. Test our OCEANIDS platform and make a map that highlights an important issue related to the marine environment, then send us the link with a few lines describing the map. The best stories/maps will be featured on our website – therefore an opportunity to gain exposure for an issue important to you, or in your part of the world!

Click here to get started. The deadline for submission of maps/stories is extended to 16 March 2012.
Submissions, all other feedback and questions should be sent to Christian Neumann.

Map of the Month

Modelling of habitat suitability for the humpback whale in the Southeast and Northeast Pacific
GRID-Arendal is a partner in the UNEP-administered project Broad-scale marine spatial planning of mammal corridors & protected areas in Southeast and Northeast Pacific Region and the Wider Caribbean, under the LifeWeb initiative. In this project, habitat suitability was modelled for 5 marine mammal species in the East Pacific, and the distribution of known and probable occurence for 24 marine mammal species in the Caribbean region was mapped.

The map shows the modelling for the humpback whale (Megaptera novaeangliae) for the period June-November, based on sighting data available in the Information System on Marine Biodiversity and Marine Protected Areas of the Southeast Pacific (SIBIMAP). The full map (in Spanish) is accessible here. Scroll down the page to the headline "Ballena jorobada (Megaptera novaeangliae)", and click on the second icon from the left to view the map.

For more information, please contact Jean-Nicolas Poussart.


Recent events
Seminars/meetings/conferences related to the marine environment where representatives from GRID-Arendal have participated:

  • Visit to GRID-Arendal by Mr. Cesar Gatica, Coordinator of the Continental Shelf Unit of Chile's Direccción Nacional de Fronteras y Límites, Arendal, Norway, 7-8 February – discussing further cooperation and support from the UNEP Shelf Programme in the preparation of the submissions of the outer limits of the continental shelf of Chile.
  • 17th Ordinary Meeting of the Contracting Parties to the Convention for the Protection of the Marine Environment and the Coastal Region of the Mediterranean and its Protocols, Paris, France, 8-10 February – although not physically present in the meeting, the document Highlights for Policy Makers corresponding to the forthcoming report on the State of the Mediterranean Marine and Coastal Environment, produced by GRID-Arendal, was presented during the meeting and distributed to the delegates.
  • Pacific Island Maritime Boundaries workshop, Sydney, Australia, 20 February - 2 March – addressing the issues surrounding the 22 unresolved maritime boundaries in the region.
  • Workshop, under the auspices of the United Nations, in support of the Regular Process for global reporting and assessment of the state of the marine environment, including socio-economic aspects, Sanya, China, 21-23 February – presenting technical capacity building for marine assessments.
  • World Oceans Summit, Singapore, 22-24 February – examining how the increasing activity in and around the oceans can be managed sustainably and what this means for business and other key stakeholders.
  • Meeting with representatives from Det Norske Veritas (DNV), Oslo, Norway, 27 February – discussing environmental issues related to deep sea mining.
  • Arctic Region Oil & Gas Conference, Stavanger, Norway, 28-29 February – giving the presentation: "The Arctic knowledge frontier: Northern academic institutions as a tool to ensure safe resource exploitation that benefit the local as well as global society".
  • Seminar organised by the Zoology Department at the University of Cape Town, South Africa, 29 February – giving a presentation on securing ecological networks by linking tourism and conservation.

Upcoming events

7 March
Arendal, Norway: Visit to GRID-Arendal by Øyvind Paasche, leader of Bergen Marine Research Cluster.
For more information, please contact Morten Sørensen.

27 March
Arendal, Norway: Meeting on Marine Cooperation with representatives from University of Agder (UiA), Institute of Marine Research (IMR), Centre for Ecological and Evolutionary Synthesis (CEES), the County Governor and the County Administration.
For more information, please contact Morten Sørensen.


Global Partnership for Oceans
GRID-Arendal has been included as one of the founding partners for the World Bank's Global Partnership for Oceans (GPO). World Bank Group President Robert B. Zoellick announced this coalition of governments, international organizations, civil society groups and private interests at The Economist’s World Oceans Summit in Singapore on 24 February. Zoellick said the new Partnership would bring science, advocacy, the private sector, and international public institutions together to advance mutually agreed goals for healthy and productive oceans.

Read more about GPO here.

For more information, please contact Yannick Beaudoin.

Did you know that... 2008, nearly 80 million tonnes of fish were captured, with an estimated value of more than 80 billion USD?
Source: Why Value the Oceans? A Discussion Paper
...9 billion USD is made in ecotourism related to reefs per year?
Source: Global Partnership for Oceans

Picture of the month

Tourists watch Crabeater Seal (Lobodon carcinophagus), Antarctic Peninsular.

Photo: Peter Prokosch, GRID-Arendal Photo Library.

Our favorite website of the month

Global Partnership for Oceans

Disclaimer: GRID-Arendal does not necessarily endorse the content of external websites, and provides them for information purposes only. If you would like your website to be featured here, please contact Rannveig Nilsen.

EarthWire Marine

EarthWire Marine is a free online news service provided by GRID-Arendal. You can get marine environment news e-mailed to you every day or sign up to an RSS feed. Registering is simple. We pledge to protect your privacy, and users can at any time unsubscribe from the service. To subscribe, visit the EarthWire Marine website.

For previous editions of this Marine Newsletter, please visit our Marine Programme website.


Thursday 01 Mar 2012