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Climate Effects on Productivity in Arctic and Sub-Arctic Ecosystems Workshop

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Dr. Anne Hollowed was an invited participant in the U.S./Canada/Norway workshop "Climate effects on productivity in Arctic and Sub-Arctic ecosystems" in Reykjavik, Iceland  21-22 September 2013.  Dr. Kirstin Holsman with the AFSC and Joint Institute for the Study of the Atmosphere and Ocean (JISAO) also participated in the workshop.  An interdisciplinary group of climatologists, oceanographers, and fisheries scientists participated from academic and government institutions. The workshop focused on four main geographic regions: the East Bering Sea, the Northeast U.S. Continental Shelf, and the Barents and Norwegian Seas. For each of these four regions, participants identified the mechanisms that have historically been important for biological production, assessed how these mechanisms may change with climate change, and discussed consequences of changes in physics, phytoplankton and zooplankton on fish within these regions.

The workshop focused on the following key themes:

Part 1: Key physical and biological processes that have historically controlled seasonal and annual biological production in the East Bering Sea, Northeast U.S. Continental Shelf, and Norwegian and Barents Seas large marine ecosystems.

Part 2: Global climate change projections and expected physical and biological changes in the ecosystems of East Bering Sea, Northeast U.S. Continental Shelf, and the Norwegian and Barents Seas.

Part 3: Connecting climate change impacts through the food web to fisheries: Approaches, challenges, and future directions.

Invited speakers gave talks that set the stage for breakout group discussions.  Results from the breakout groups were presented in plenary to provide key points for further discussion.

In Part 1 Dr. Hollowed gave a talk titled “An overview of the historical climate change and climate variability in the Bering Sea and consequences on biological productivity.”  The talk provided an overview of the major outcomes of the BEST/BSIERP program and introduced the current conceptual model for the mechanisms controlling biological production in the region. 

In Part 2 Dr. Hollowed gave a talk titled “Projected changes in the Arctic-An overview.”  This talk summarized current literature on observed and projected impacts of climate change on the productivity of Arctic marine ecosystems. 

In Part 3 Dr. Holsman gave a talk titled “Case studies from the Bering Sea: Integrating climate data into ecosystem and fisheries models.”  This talk presented recent integrated end-to-end model (FEAST) and multi-species stock-assessment model (MSM) results where climate projections have been used to derive harvest rates for Bering Sea groundfish species under climate change.

By Anne Hollowed and Kirstin Holsman


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