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Abstract

Emerging European legislation is changing the scope of water management from the local scale to basin scale. The focus is shifting from sectoral, issue-by-issue management to the protection of aquatic ecosystems, as well as the terrestrial ecosystems and wetlands linked to them. There has also been a movement from addressing problems in isolation on land, in freshwaters, in estuaries or the coastal zone, to integrating these zones, and extending the ecosystem approach to whole shelf areas. Ecosystem protection will thus affect how many human activities are regulated and managed in coastal and port areas, but legislation is also designed to balance these ecosystem objectives with socioeconomic needs and goals. Sustainable protection of ecosystems requires an expansion of traditional ecological risk assessment methods, in order to address multiple risk drivers on multiple spatial and temporal scales.
SEA
Environmental
Decisions
Transform information
into actio n
Conceptual frameworks to
balance ecosystem and
security goals
Sabine E. Apitz
SEA Environmental Decisions, Ltd.
*1 South Cottages, The Ford; Little Hadham, Herts, SG11 2AT, UK; +44 (0)1279 771890;
drsea@cvrl.org
Institute of Water and Environment
Cranfield University, UK
European management of human impact in marine waters:
regulation is becoming less sectoral, but more complex
1990
Surface
waters
Dangerous
substances
Shellfish waters UWWTD
Nitrates
Chemical
disturbance
1970 1980 2000
FEPA (UK)
Physical & Chemical
disturbance
Water
framework
Habitats &
Rio
Ecosystem
disturbance
Marine Strategy
adapted from Ruth Parker
EU ecosystem-based policy will result in an ecosystem-based
management of the environment from land to the open sea, but coasts
and estuaries are regions of overlap for policy
99?9?
--
Proposed Marine
Framework
Directive
999?
--
European
Commission Marine
Strategy
-
99? (c)
--
Integrated Coastal
Zone Management
Recommendation
-
999
-
Water Framework
Directive
Applicable
only in the
UK
9999
Habitats Directive
Open SeaCoastalEstuaries (b)FreshwaterLand
Environmental Focus of the Directive
Recent or
Emerging
European
Environmental
Directives (a)
Apitz SE, Elliot M, Fountain M, Galloway T. 2006. European Environmental Management: Moving to an
Ecosystem Approach. Integrated Environmental Assessment and Management: 2:80-86 .
Sustainable ecosystem protection
Environmental
Security?
Ecosystem protection affects how human activities are
regulated and managed in coastal and port areas
Legislation will also balance ecosystem objectives with
socioeconomic needs and goals.
If environmental security “involves actions that guard
against environmental degradation in order to
preserve or protect human, material, and natural
resources at scales ranging from global to local” then
the above is environmental security
However, these systems do not address the “security”
issues that are the focus here
As environmental security grows as a field, it is being
addressed separately from other environmental issues, and in
a very sectoral manner
1990
Surface
waters
Dangerous
substances
Shellfish waters UWWTD
Nitrates
Chemical
disturbance
1970 1980 2000
FEPA (UK)
Physical & Chemical
disturbance
Water
framework
Habitats &
Rio
Ecosystem
disturbance
Environmental Security?
Marine Strategy
adapted from Ruth Parker
Can we expand the paradigms?
Current means that rare but dramatic events (such as terrorist
attacks and extreme storms) are not addressed in the same
frameworks as the more mundane issues such as contaminant
control and habitat degradation
On can argue that an over-emphasis on human-induced rare
events can cause a mis-allocation of resources, as many
natural disasters are historically more damaging
There is a need to develop decision frameworks in which these
seemingly disparate issues are addressed together in support
of regional budgeting, decision making, communication and
management.
Sustainable protection of infrastructure and ecosystems
requires an expansion of traditional ERA, to address multiple
risk drivers on multiple spatial and temporal scales
Definition of objectives
A common problem in decision making is that decision makers
are unclear as to what their objectives are
For the many-headed hydra of environmental security, the
process should begin with the definition of some objectives,
and, most likely, the development of potential scenarios.
¾Are we protecting against everything?
¾At what spatial and temporal scale?
¾What is controllable, what is not?
¾Are we developing preventions, tracking changes, selecting
responses?
All of these may be necessary to provide environmental
security, but unless they are clearly separated in a decision
hierarchy, they will get muddled.
Clarity about decisions
For the many-headed hydra of environmental security, the
process should begin with the definition of some objectives,
and, most likely, the development of potential scenarios
¾Are we protecting against everything?
¾At what spatial and temporal scale?
¾What is controllable, what is not?
¾Are we developing preventions, tracking changes, selecting
responses?
All of these may be necessary to provide environmental
security, but unless they are clearly separated in a decision
hierarchy, they will get muddled
¾Vulnerabilities or risks must be identified, characterized and
ranked
¾Decisions are based upon scenario probability,
preventability, causality (human-caused or natural), time
scale (gradual or sudden), and potential costs and risks
¾Prevention strategies and response strategies (whether a
scenario is unpreventable or if prevention fails) must be
developed.
Types of Risks - Natural/manmade gradual impacts
Maintenance of resources (clean water, land, property, trees,
crop viability) in the face of environmental changes such as
global warming, sea level rise, build up of contaminants, etc.,
¾Erode both environmental and economic sustainability over
time.
¾Fundamentally man-made, but gradual and inexorable.
¾Decisions may involve trying to prevent or remediate the
problems, or trying to protect resources in the face of
change.
¾Governments need to plan for both prevention and
response, and maybe prepare to protect limited resources
from invasion/threat.
¾These are extensive, press, pressures.
Type of risks - Natural catastrophic impacts
The results of natural disasters.
¾Must determine the likelihood of a number of relatively
predictable events such as major storms, earthquakes, etc.,
and protect against impacts such as dam break, chemical
spills, explosions, etc.
¾Scenario development is straightforward, probabilities of the
natural disasters are matched to impacts of potential
scenarios, and then prevention technologies and their costs
are considered.
¾For the most unlikely scenarios, prevention may not be a
choice, but response contingencies should be considered.
¾Chemical plants might be moved away from storm tracks or
faults, but still be built.
¾These are pulse pressures, and can be localised or
extensive.
Types of risks - Man-made catastrophic
Terrorist attacks, etc.
¾More difficult to predict when compared to storms,
etc., as people can contrive to achieve improbable
things.
¾Focus is more on identifying vulnerabilities and then
figuring out how to prevent them or respond to them
¾The concern is either detection of bombs/ people or
barriers, but simply moving something out of a
storm track, etc., won’t protect it.
¾This category is not too different from the above
category, but it may involve an entirely different set
of detection/prevention tools.
¾Pulse pressures, and can be localized or extensive
Risk types, criteria and examples (WBGU 1999, p. 11)
Type 1 probability low (towards 0); nuclear energy, chemical plants,
Sword of Damocles damagehigh (towards infinite); dams, meteorite impacts
confidence intervals of p and d low
Type 2 probability uncertain floods, earthquakes, volcanic
Cyclops damage high; eruptions, AIDS, El Nino, mass
confidence interval of p high; developments of anthropogenicly
confidence interval of d rather low affected species
Type 3 probability uncertain increasing greenhouse effect,
Pythia damage uncertain (potentially high); endocrine effective substances,
confidence intervals of p and d high; release and spread of transgene
plants, BSE
Type 4 probability uncertain;
Pandora‘s box damage uncertain (only presumptions); ozone destroying substances
confidence intervals of p and d uncertain
(unclear);
persistency high (several generations)
Type 5 probability rather high anthropogenic climate change
Cassandra; damage rather high; for vulnerable areas
confidence interval of p rather high;
confidence interval of d rather low;
delay effect high
Type 6 probability rather low electromagnetic fields
Medusa damage rather low (exposition high);
confidence interval of p rather high;
confidence interval of d rather low;
potential of mobilization high
How we assess, manage and communicate risk depends upon the type of risk it is
From the German Council on Global Environmental Change
Management Risk class Extent of
damage
Probability
of
occurrence
Strategies for action
Science-based Damocles High Low •Reducing disaster
potential
Cyclops High Uncertain •Ascertaining probability
•Increasin
g
resilience
•Preventin
g
surprises
•Emergency
mana
g
ement
Precautionary Pythia Uncertain Uncertain •Implementing
precautionar
y
principle
Pandora Uncertain Uncertain •Developin
g
substitutes
•Improvin
g
knowled
g
e
•Reduction and
containment
•Emergency
mana
g
ement
Discursive Cassandra High High •Consciousness building
Medusa Low Low •Confidence buildin
g
•Public participation
•Risk communication
•Contingency
mana
g
ement
adapted from WBGU 1999
Vulnerability/risk
Is it preventable/
can we afford to
prevent it?
Prevention/
Avoidance measures
Response/
restoration measures
Did event happen
(anyway)?
Preparedness measures
Yes?
No
Yes
ACTION FLOWCHART
Depending on the probability and cost of a risk, emphases will be put on different measures
No/
not yet
Maybe
Risk Ranking / Assessment
Vulnerabilities
Information Gathering/ Gap Analysis
Prevention Management Response Management
Comparative Assessment
Information Gathering / Gap Analysis
Hazard Assessment
Phase
Decision Implementation
Action Evaluation / Gap Analysis
Criteria Development
Remedy Option Analysis
Protective Measures Analysis
Tools Tools
Criteria Selection
Criteria Selection
Planning Phase
Action Phase Stakeholder Input
Stakeholder Input
Stakeholder Input
Stakeholder Input
Failure
Scenario Development Scenario Development
DECISION FLOWCHART
Environmental
Human (socio/pol)
Health and safety
Environmental assessment is only one part of the
decision process
Various types of
appraisals
inform each step
in the decision
process – from
basin scale to
site-specific
The cyclic nature
of this process
reveals the
opportunities for
adaptive
management
from Apitz and White, 2003
So, how do we balance these
disparate kinds of risks in a
decision framework?
Brief overview of emerging
tools in support of ecosystem-
based management, which
can be adapted for security
issues
For Venice Lagoon, a conceptual diagram lays out potential
impacts to a more complex web of receptors – note that both
natural and anthropogenic drivers are considered
To address ecosystem or security risks, many activities must be considered together in
a region from WWF (2004)
from WWF (2004)
1°W
1°W
0°E
0°E
1°E
1°E
2°E
2°E
E
E
4°E
4°E
5°E
5°E
6°E
6°E
7°E
7°E
51°N
52°N 52°N
53°N 53°N
54°N 54°N
55°N 55°N
Ves sel D ensity
High
Low
Beam trawling effort
Aldridge et al., submitted ECSS
Natural and human disturbance must be considered together
Beam trawling effort
Natural disturbance
-Peak bed stress (Nm-2)
-% activity
Aldridge et al., submitted ECSS
Natural and human disturbance comparison
Beam trawling effort
Natural disturbance
-Peak bed stress (Nm-2)
-% activity
Rate of reworking
- turnover
Aldridge et al., submitted ECSS
Human activities can be assigned to areas where they don’t
overwhelm natural processes
CEFAS uses the DPSIR approach for the assessment of the impacts of seabed
disturbance, balancing natural and human disturbance
Detailed models (using by site-specific assessments and research) inform the
links between boxes adapted from Ruth Parker
The composite impact of various disturbance types can be
combined in common units to generate disturbance indices
Parker R, Aldridge J, Eastwood P, Houghton C, Mills C, Kershaw. P. 2004. The Ecosystem Effects of Sediment Disturbance: Development and
application of a GIS based disturbance impact assessment tool. Lowestoft, UK: The Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science
(CEFAS). Report nr AE1224. 48 p.
Driver
GIS gridded layers
Pressure
State
Impact
Response
Input data layers
Driver: trawling distribution
Pressure:sediment resuspension
sediment depth removed
State: sediment type, redox
Impact/risk model
Management scenarios
Derived data layers
Impact: sediment rate change
Response:spatial illustration of
least risk or minimum
impact scenarios
GIS tool for
scenario testing
Measured disturbances are combined with modelled impacts to
predict responses to various scenarios
adapted from Ruth Parker
GIS- based impact assessment: the effect of trawling patterns on benthic function
from Parker et al., 2004
from Parker
et al., 2004
GIS impact assessment tool application – Contaminant remobilisation and bioavailability
from disturbance in the Tyne coastal area
from Parker et al., 2004
Comparative spatial extent for human activities – 2001/2
Disposal ~ 0.04%
Aggregate >1hr ~0.01%
Aggregate <1hr ~ 0.08% Beam trawling
~67%
Undisturbed?
~30%
Disposal ~ 0.04%
Aggregate >1hr ~0.01%
Aggregate <1hr ~ 0.08% Beam trawling
~67%
Undisturbed?
~30%
0
0.01
0.02
0.03
0.04
0.05
0.06
0.07
0.08
0.09
Aggregate <1hr Aggregate >1hr Disposal
% area
Dredging and disposal
Trawling
adapted from Ruth Parker
Examples of site
designations for an
integrated management
plan using marine spatial
planning. Security issues
should be integrated into
ecological and
socioeconomic
considerations
Models, such as the Regional Risk Model (RRM) of Landis, are being
developed to inform complex decisions in which multiple sites and endpoints
are being impacted by multiple stressors – this can be adapted to address
the security “stressors” as well, to balance these inputs
from Landis, 2004
The RRM uses filters and ranking factors to assess the links
between sources, habitats, and impacts in a transparent way
from Landis, 2004
Clean, healthy, safe
biologically diverse &
productive seas -
safe seas can and should be added!
..meet ecological
aims
Recovery timescales
Ecological sensitivity
to disturbance
Natural vs.
anthropogenic
disturbance
Individual vs.
cumulative disturbance
Science Issues…
Space and
time dependence
of disturbance
Offshore SACs, effort regulation
Marine spatial planning (MSP)
Marine Bill
Net Benefits’
EcoQOs
..policy framework
‘Charting Progress’
Ecosystem
Approach
OSPAR
adapted from Ruth Parker
Sustainable management decisions must balance
complex issues
Clearly, ecological goals must be balanced against
socioeconomic and regulatory goals
However, we must also project potential risks into the future
and assess how we hope to prevent and/or respond to either
natural or human-induced impacts upon our safety and
environment
These can be gradual, (e.g., climate change), or sudden (e.g., a
hurricane), and can be preventable or uncontrollable
All prevention has a cost which must be balanced against the
cost of consequences
Risk assessment and management tools, as well as decision
and communication tools, can be adapted to allow society and
decision makers to allocate resources in support of their
environmental security goals
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... On the one hand, an sDPSIR can support the creation of an informative process about the environmental state, through indicators and maps. On the other hand, it can be used to evaluate effects of various impacts of human activities and choices, and to support the consequent societal responses design [26]. Both features are very relevant parts of a Geodesign process and the latter may be implemented interactively supporting sketch planning. ...
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... 34,35 The MA warns that human activities will increase the likelihood of natural disasters such as floods, wildfires and storms, unless measures are taken to protect ecosystems and lessen societal vulnerabilities by making better informed development decisions. 1,36,37 For example, the removal of wetlands through leveeing, draining and canalization reduces natural flood storage capacity by up to 80% and increases the probability, duration and severity of flood events. 16 The depletion of natural resources can also function as a catalyst for war and other confrontations. ...
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... Such stresses and changes include global warming, sea-level rise, acidification, eutrophication, pollution, invasive species, biodiversity and habitat loss. [Apitz 2007[Apitz , 2013 Hence, the approach suggested in this report builds on the already existing approaches proposed in other PIANC reports (see Section 1.4), such as the WwN approach. It focuses on working with natural processes to achieve WTI project goals by understanding ecosystem functions and services and accounting the ES trade-offs in a structured and quantified manner. ...
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The aim of this paper is to highlight a not yet recognized hazard for mass failure (landslides) of contaminated soils into rivers and to provide an understanding of important interactions of such events. A first effort to investigate the problem is made focusing on the south eastern part of the Göta Älv river valley, in Sweden, by combining geographical information on potentially contaminated sites with slope stability levels on maps. The objectives of this study were to: (1) Review current Swedish risk assessment methodologies for contaminated areas and landslides, and analyze their capability to quantify the risk of contaminated areas being subject to landslides. (2) Investigate the presence of contaminated areas at landslide risk along the Göta Älv river valley. (3) Provide an overview of the national methods for landslide risk analysis and for environmental risk classification, followed by a comparison between the methods and the results from the superposition of the two methods for the study site. (4) Make a first attempt to conceptualize the release and transport mechanisms.Environmental risk assessment data of the study site was combined with data on slope stability levels. Conceptual issues of the release and transport scenario were identified and a first conceptual model was created.Of 31 potentially contaminated sites, eight had moderate to high probability for landslide, and of these eight sites, five were classified as having a high or very high environmental risk. These findings had not been revealed when the data had only been considered separately. The ‘actual’ risk could hence be even higher than the highest environmental risk class actually suggests. By visualizing results from the landslide risk analysis with the results from the environmental risk classification of contaminated sites, a better understanding of the potential hazard involved is obtained.The release mechanisms as a result of a landslide into surface water were conceptualized using two time scales: the instantaneous and the long-term release. It is clear that the Swedish method for landslide risk assessment and for environmental risk assessment of contaminated soil considers hazard events that are characterized by different time scales. The method for landslide risk assessment addresses events that are rapid (occurring over minutes) with instantaneous impact and consequences. Measurements are made within a short time after the event (days to months). The environmental risk assessment is done with respect to events that are slowly evolving (over years or decades) and any possible consequence materializes after a long period of time.The combined data provided a more solid basis for decisions; however, inherent difficulties when combining data based on different methods were revealed. Separate assessment methodologies executed by different authorities may lead to incorrect assessments and inappropriate protective measures.The effects and the consequences of landslides in areas with contaminated soil need to be further investigated. The climate change expected to occur over the next hundred years will increase the probability of slope failures, such as landslides, in many parts of the world where the precipitation is predicted to increase (e.g., in Scandinavia). This will accentuate the need for methods and models to assess the impact of such events. In order to achieve established environmental quality objectives there is an urgent need for models and assessment principles (criteria) for contaminated areas that are at risk of experiencing slope failure. Knowledge of the governing processes that control the release and transport of substances under a variety of conditions, taking into account characteristic spatial and temporal scales, is required.
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