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MARINFORSK-Marine ressurser og miljø

GEAK workshop: Assessing the value and function of the world’s kelp forests

Tildelt: kr 99 999

The world’s kelp forests are extensive vegetated marine ecosystems that cover over a quarter of the world’s coastlines. Kelp forests provide extensive benefits to humans, including 14 of the 18 contributions of nature to people identified by the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services. Although scientific interest in kelp forest ecosystem services have increased within the past decade, there is a lack of studies valuating services explicitly from kelp forests and research effort on this topic lags decades behind other coastal ecosystems. Current economic valuations of kelp are heavily dominated by direct-use services such as fisheries and kelp harvest, yet these are most likely a considerable underestimation because they do not include the numerous cultural values, as well as their role in carbon storage, nutrient filtration, and biodiversity provision. The primary goal of our workshop is to conduct a global assessment of ecosystem services from kelp forests and establish their value to the economy and human societies. The network brings together kelp and seaweed experts and environmental economists to develop a spatially explicit global synthesis of the range of benefits that kelp forests provide to people around the world. This will contribute to estimates of the scope and value of ecosystem services in the coastal zone, which can be used for management decisions, restoration actions and inclusion of kelp forests in national and international initiatives to project biodiversity and secure sustainable ocean development.


MARINFORSK-Marine ressurser og miljø