Blenckner, T., Ammar, Y., Müller-Karulis, B., Niiranen, S., Arneborg, L., & Li, Q. (2021). The Risk for Novel and Disappearing Environmental Conditions in the Baltic Sea. Frontiers in Marine Science, 8, 1398. https://doi.org/10.3389/fmars.2021.745722
Future climate biogeochemical projections indicate large changes in the ocean with environmental conditions not experienced at present referred to as novel or disappearing conditions. These climate-induced changes will most likely affect species distribution through changes in growth, behaviour, evolution, dispersal, and species interactions. However, the future risk of novel and disappearing environmental conditions in the ocean is poorly understood, in particular for the compound effects of climate and nutrient management changes. The authors of this study mapped the risk of the occurrence of future novel and disappearing environmental conditions and analysed the outcome of climate and nutrient management scenarios for the Baltic Sea, and the potential consequences for three species. Overall, the future projections show, as expected, an increase in environmental novelty over time. The future nutrient reduction management that improves the eutrophication status of the Baltic Sea contributes to large novel and disappearing conditions. The authors show the consequences of novel and disappearing environmental conditions for three species under different scenarios. Through their comprehensive analysis of environmental novelty and disappearing conditions for a marine system, they found the urgent need to include novelty and disappearing projection outputs in Earth System Models. The results of this study further illustrate that adaptive management is needed to account for the emergence of novelty related to the interplay of multiple drivers. Overall, the analysis provides strong support for the expectation of novel ecological communities in marine systems, which may affect ecosystem services, and needs to be accounted for in sustainable future management plans of our oceans.
Policy relevant message:
Adaptive management is needed to account for the emergence of novelty related to the interplay of multiple drivers. The novel ecological communities in marine systems are to be expected to emerge, which in turn may affect ecosystem services, and needs to be accounted for in sustainable future management plans of our oceans.