Recommended Literature

Watersheds, Bays, and Bounded Seas: The Science and Management of Semi-Enclosed Marine Systems


This book resulted from a workshop in 2007 jointly sponsored by the Scientific Committee on Problems of the Environment (SCOPE), the International Association for the Physical Sciences of the Ocean (IAPSO), and SCOR. Many individuals from SCOR projects and working groups were involved in the workshop and as authors.
Island Press also makes it possible for anyone who wishes to use the book for a class to examine it for 90 days for free (see

Order: Watersheds, Bays, and Bounded Seas

Global Environment Outlook GEO-4: environment for development


This recent assessment report provides an overview of global social and economic trends and the state-and-trends of the global and regional environments over the past two decades, as well as the human dimensions of these changes. It highlights the interlinkages and challenges of environmental change, and opportunities that the environment provides for human well-being. It provides an outlook for the future, and policy options to address present and emerging environmental issues.

GEO-4 places sustainable development at the core of the assessment, particularly on issues dealing with intra- and intergenerational equity. The assessment uses the drivers-pressures-state-impacts-responses (DPSIR) framework for analysis of the Atmosphere, Land and Water environments and Biodiversity. The analysis includes the need and usefulness of valuation of environmental goods and services, and the role of such services both in enhancing development and human well-being and in minimizing human vulnerability to environmental change.

Chapter 4 of the report reviews the pressures on water in the context of global and regional drivers. It covers the state-and-trends of the water environment, including its ecosystems and their fish stocks, emphasizing the last 20 years, and the impacts of changes on the environment and human well-being at local to global scales. It describes how the water cycle is being affected by long-term climate change, affecting precipitation patterns and the cryosphere, ocean salinity and acidification, and sea level. The chapter reviews water use and degradation at basin scales and the consequences for human well-being, emphasizing the catchment-to-coast continuum and impacts on the provision of aquatic ecosystem services. The review of fish stocks highlights the large-scale decline in freshwater and marine fisheries, caused mostly by persistent overfishing.

The Water chapter notes the continuing challenge for the management of water resources and aquatic ecosystems to balance environmental and developmental needs, requiring a sustained combination of technology, legal and institutional frameworks, and, where feasible, market-based approaches.

Download report - United Nations Environment Programme (2007)

Download Chapter 4 – Water

Integrated Coastal Zone Management (ICZM)

ICZM 2007 ICZM 2007

This book presents diverse case studies from around the World, including many Asian countries, Africa, North and South America, Europe, the Middle East, Island Nations, and elsewhere. The book's 39 chapters are organized according to seven interrelated themes including global to local scales of ICZM, human dimensions and social, physical and biological aspects, and key closely linked topics ranging from biodiversity conservation to hazards and risk management, the impact of climate change, and the application of remote sensing and geospatial technologies. The outcome of this compilation is to synthesize recent case study experiences, highlighting the changing global scenario of ICZM, the high demand for coastal resources, current lack of governance, and the need to import and export both techniques and expertise, including the importance of protecting more vulnerable coastal sites from natural calamities. Ultimately, this book provides a means to help address and solve the complexity that exists between coastal systems and anthropogenic activities.
Topics Covered
• ICZM – Global to Local Scales
• Human Dimensions in ICZM
• Coastal Erosion, Protection, and Development
• Special Areas and Species in the Coastal Zone
• Natural Hazards and Disasters in the Coastal Zone
• Climate Change Impacts and ICZM
• Tools for Data Gathering and Analysis in ICZM

Integrated Coastal Zone Management (ICZM)

BACC - A Regional Climate Change Assessment for the Baltic Sea Basin

BACC FrontcoverBACC Frontcover

A regional climate change assessment report for the Baltic Sea basin was published in January this year (BACC Author Team, 2008). The assessment is an example for a type of urgently needed reports helping to put global climate change (as portrayed e.g. by the IPCC reports) into a regional perspective, which local stakeholders and politicians can relate to. The so called BACC (BALTEX Assessment of Climate Change for the Baltic Sea Basin) report was compiled by a consortium of 84 scientists from 13 countries around the Baltic Sea and covers various disciplines related to climate research and ecological impacts. The book is divided in chapters on past and current climate change, on projected future anthropogenic climate change, and on observed and projected impacts on terrestrial and marine ecosystems of the Baltic Sea basin. It aims to bring together consolidated (published) knowledge which has broad consensus in the scientific community. Still, this consensus may at times take the form of “consensus on dissensus”, as for certain points, contrary opinions cannot be resolved due to insufficient scientific evidence.

Major findings of the assessment include an observed average air temperature increase over the Baltic Sea basin of 0.85°C since 1871, which is slightly higher than reported by the IPCC (2007) for the entire globe. This has already lead to a decreased ice and snow cover and ice season over the Baltic Sea basin, a shift towards earlier spring vegetation phases and an extended growth season, and changed species distributions and migration patterns. Regional climate models until the year 2100 project rising air temperatures of 3-6 °C over the entire basin, resulting in a possible reduction of sea ice in the Baltic Sea by up to 80%. Winter precipitation over the entire basin is projected to increase, while summers could be dramatically drier in the southern part of the basin. As to sea level changes and their impacts on coastal regions, the Baltic Sea is specific because the overlay of the projected global sea level rise and the regional post-glacial land uplift is expected to create regionally varying patterns of local sea level rise, leading to different requirements for potential coastal protection measures later in this century.

BACC is an ongoing project within the BALTEX programme (, the latter being a regional hydroclimate project of the Global Energy and Water Experiment (GEWEX) of WCRP. Similar initiatives to BACC, including, for example, a climate report for the greater Hamburg area in Germany, for China’s Yellow Sea, or for the Laptev Sea north of Russia, have already been launched. A second BACC climate report is due in 2012. For more information on BACC, see

BACC Author Team (2008). Assessment of Climate Change for the Baltic Sea Basin, Regional Climate Studies, Springer Heidelberg, 474 pp.

IPCC (2007). Fourth Assessment Report.

For more information on BACC

Coastal development: The Oder estuary and beyond

Coastal DevelopmentCoastal Development

Coastal development: The Oder estuary and beyond

This report reflects the content of the second German-Polish Coastal Dialogue conference, 21-22 March 2007 in Międzyzdroje, Poland, carried out within the research project ICZM-Oder. In the report, you will find results not only from the ICZM-Oder project but also other ICZM-related projects with a geographical focus on the Baltic and North Seas. With respect to the focus themes, the report is subdivided into the chapters “The Oder estuary: results and perspectives”, “preconditions and tools for coastal management” and “North and Baltic Sea experiences”.

For ordering Coastline Reports 8 (25 Euro including postage, 15 Euro for members of EUCC Germany) please send an E-Mail with your addresses for delivery and invoice to:

Download: Coastal Development

Effects of Nutrient Enrichment In the Nation’s Estuaries

Eutro CoverEutro Cover

Effects of Nutrient Enrichment In the Nation’s Estuaries

This recent publication provides a comprehensive assessment update of national US estuarine eutrophication and concludes in a set of management related recommendations which are:
• Reducing eutrophic conditions in estuaries requires coordinated and integrated action that balances management action, efficient monitoring to assess the effectiveness of the management, targeted research, and a communication campaign aimed at engaging the broader community. Major recommendations are:
- Implement more aggressive management actions to reduce nutrients for improvements in eutrophic condition.
- Capitalize on monitoring technological innovations (e.g., observing systems, remote sensing, web resources) to improve comprehensive assessment of eutrophication status in a coordinated and timely fashion.
- Focus research on improving assessment capability, resolving uncertainty, and establishing criteria/thresholds.
- Engage resource managers, researchers, policy makers, and the community with frequent assessment updates at local, regional, and national levels.
- Develop tools to quantitatively relate the effectiveness of mitigation strategies in response to policy actions.

The book reflects various aspects of LOICZ related activities such as typology considerations in Chapter 6 and of course the biogeochemical budgeting and its further development (see Priority Topic 2). Various LOICZ colleagues contributed.

Download: Effects of Nutrient Enrichment In the Nation’s Estuaries

We welcome Alice Newton as the new Chair of LOICZ.

!!! New issue:

IHDP announces new venue and date


7th International Science Conference on the Human Dimensions of Global Environmental Change (Open Meeting), "Social Challenges of Global Change", originally scheduled for 15-19 October 2008, will take place from April 26-30 2009 in Bonn, Germany