Ecosystem Service Asset and Risk Register

A research team from the University of Plymouth, led by Professor Sian Rees, worked with us in 2019 to develop an ecosystem service asset and risk register. An ecosystem service is a product or function that is provided to us by habitats and species in the marine environment - their ability to do this depends on their health and extent. It is important for us to understand and recognise what these are, and how human pressures can diminish these natural services and benefits. 
An ecosystem service asset and risk register looks at our marine habitats and using basic models, assesses their health and capability to provide these functions and identifies where these may be at risk.
In order to inform the review of one of our key byelaws we also used this research to help model three different management scenarios to help us understand how the location and extent of trawling activitiy would lead to social, environmental and economic costs and benefits. In our work we seek to balance these different needs. Framing discussions in the context of ecosystem services and how different management measures could either enhance or diminish these benefits, meant that there was a more neutral and constructive discussion, as opposed to one in which focus heads towards purely economic losses and gains.
The report was led by Dr Matt Ashley and can be downloaded here. 

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