Welcome to PAP/RAC Mediterranean Coastal Alert! This newsletter is regularly updated monthly. It contains abstracts of selected current articles and archives on various environmental themes, in particular those dealing with all aspects of coastal issues. The selection is made from the articles published in the leading international scientific journals. This newsletter is an excellent way of keeping you updated with coastal studies and processes.

In this issue Issue No. 82, 2015-08-01

Is lack of space a limiting factor for the development of aquaculture in EU coastal areas?
(Abstract...)

Coastal erosion perception and willingness to pay for beach management (Cadiz, Spain)
(Abstract...)

From sea sharing to sea sparing – Is there a paradigm shift in ocean management?
(Abstract...)

Predictors of public climate change awareness and risk perception around the world
(Abstract...)

Abstract

Is lack of space a limiting factor for the development of aquaculture in EU coastal areas?

This study examines the spatial occupancy of marine finfish aquaculture in the European Union (EU), identifies geographical clusters and administrative areas where cage aquaculture development is particularly significant and provides evidence on the interactions between aquaculture and the touristic use of the coastline. Despite the increasing demand for seafood in the EU, its aquaculture is not expanding at the same rate (FAO, 2014), and the low number of new licences issued in recent years is a clear sign of the difficulties of the sector to expand. In this study, Google Earth satellite images and GIS methods were used to map and analyse spatial properties of marine finfish aquaculture sites in the EU. The analysis covers ten member states (Cyprus, Spain, France, Greece, Croatia, Ireland, Italy, Malta, Slovenia, United Kingdom) representing around 95% of EU marine finfish aquaculture production by volume, and Turkey. The results indicate that existing marine aquaculture sites occupy around 230 hectares (ha) in Greece, and 34 ha in UK, which represent respectively 28% and 44% of EU marine finfish production by volume. Considering these very low figures of occupied surface, it is difficult to imagine that the expansion of marine aquaculture in the EU would be constrained by a lack of space in absolute terms. Limitations to growth may be better explained by the competition for space which takes place at the local level with more established coastal economic activities. To examine in particular the interactions with the touristic use of the coastline, the analysis considered the distribution of hotels around the aquaculture sites and found that there is evidence of strong negative spatial interaction up to a distance of 3 km. These quantitative findings corroborate more qualitative considerations on the conflicts affecting the establishment of marine aquaculture in specific coastal regions in USA, Canada, Australia and New Zealand described in the literature. Another contribution from this study lies in the identification and mapping of geographical clusters and local administrative units where aquaculture production is particularly significant. Since socio-economic data for the individual aquaculture sites in the EU are not easily accessible, the mapping of EU aquaculture clusters is the prerequisite for further research to understand the local enabling conditions apart from bio-physical conditions which favoured the expansion of aquaculture in specific areas and not in others and identifying examples of best practices for the governance of the sector.

Keywords: GIS; Aquaculture; Europe; Coastal areas; Tourism.

Source: J. Hofherr, F. Natale and P. Trujillo (2015); “Is lack of space a limiting factor for the development of aquaculture in EU coastal areas?”, Ocean & Coastal Management, Volume 116, November 2015, Pages 27–36; Received: 22 October 2014; Received in Revised Form: 27 April 2015; Accepted: 8 June 2015; Available Online under: DOI:10.1016/j.ocecoaman.2015.06.010

Contact: johann.hofherr@jrc.ec.eurpa.eu

Link: ScienceDirect

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Coastal erosion perception and willingness to pay for beach management (Cadiz, Spain)

Coastal zones are complex systems where many different human activities and natural processes converge. One of the most profitable and enjoyable activities is beach tourism and recreation; however, coastal erosion can cause not only loss of land and asset values but also loss of environmental and landscape qualities and therefore their recreational value due to passive erosion from shoreline armouring and coastal development. This paper reports results from economic and demographic factors affecting public coastal erosion awareness and willingness to pay on the urban beaches of Cadiz, SW Spain. Although there is a great public awareness of coastal erosion among the interviewed adults from town, the willingness to pay for beach management improvement is minimal. The fact is possibly explained by the low regional economic status and the large number of local residents among the beachgoers. The majority of the respondents said that there should not be any extra charges because they pay regular local taxes and already pay for using beach services.

Keywords: Coastal erosion; Beach management; Cadiz, SW Spain; Extra charges.

Source: B. Alves, R. Rigall-I-Torrent, R. Ballester, J. Benavente and O. Ferreira (2015); “Coastal erosion perception and willingness to pay for beach management (Cadiz, Spain)”, Journal of Coastal Conservation, June 2015, Volume 19, Issue 3, Pages 269-280, Date: 20 May 2015.

Contact: ricard.rigall@udg.edu

Link: Journal of Coastal Conservation

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From sea sharing to sea sparing – Is there a paradigm shift in ocean management?

During the past decade, the apocalyptic rhetoric of dwindling ocean resources and the destruction of aquatic habitats in the ocean and along our coasts has motivated conservationist, scientists, international Non Governmental Organisations (NGOs) and several coastal states to advocate the separation of ever increasing ocean and coastal areas as Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) to allow for the restoration of the ocean and its resources. At the same time, and analogue to what is happening with industrial agriculture, large industrial fishing fleets are operating in the Economic Exclusive Zones (EEZ's) of foreign countries, extracting a substantial part of their valuable ocean resources for the world market. The sparing of ocean and shelf areas for both, MPA implementation and Distant Water fishing (DWF) has impacted (positively and negatively) the concerned ecosystems and has often caused use conflicts with local stakeholders. I argue that current ocean use and conservation strategies are favouring these ocean-sparing (“blue grabbing”) measures as necessary means for ocean protection and sea food production over the science-based sustainable fisheries management approach, which is based on participatory fisheries assessment and the inclusion of local stakeholders in the management process. I perceive this change from sea sharing to sea sparing approaches as a paradigm shift in ocean management.

Keywords: Sea sharing; Sea sparing; MPA; Distant water fisheries.

Source: M. Wolff (2015); “From sea sharing to sea sparing – Is there a paradigm shift in ocean management?”, Ocean & Coastal Management, Volume 116, November 2015, Pages 58–63; Received: 23 March 2015; Received in Revised Form: 1 July 2015; Accepted: 9 July 2015; Available Online under: DOI:10.1016/j.ocecoaman.2015.07.004

Contact: mwolff@zmt-bremen.de

Link: ScienceDirect

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Predictors of public climate change awareness and risk perception around the world

Climate change is a threat to human societies and natural ecosystems, yet public opinion research finds that public awareness and concern vary greatly. Here, using an unprecedented survey of 119 countries, we determine the relative influence of socio-demographic characteristics, geography, perceived well-being, and beliefs on public climate change awareness and risk perceptions at national scales. Worldwide, educational attainment is the single strongest predictor of climate change awareness. Understanding the anthropogenic cause of climate change is the strongest predictor of climate change risk perceptions, particularly in Latin America and Europe, whereas perception of local temperature change is the strongest predictor in many African and Asian countries. However, other key factors associated with public awareness and risk perceptions highlight the need to develop tailored climate communication strategies for individual nations. The results suggest that improving basic education, climate literacy, and public understanding of the local dimensions of climate change are vital to public engagement and support for climate action.

Keywords: Climate change; Awareness; Risk perception.

Source: T. Ming Lee, E. M. Markowitz, P. D. Howe, C.-Ying Ko and A. A. Leiserowitz (2015); “Predictors of public climate change awareness and risk perception around the world”, Nature Climate Change (2015); Received: 26 May 2015; Accepted: 19 June 2015; Published Online: 27 July 2015; Available Online under: DOI:10.1038/nclimate2728

Contact: dbsns@nus.edu.sg

Link: Nature Climate Change

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