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The service of sediments and the coastal sea in the German Baltic

01.04.2016 - 31.03.2019
Project manager:
Prof. Dr. Ulrich Bathmann
BMBF - Bundesministerium für Bildung und Forschung
Focus 1: Small- and meso-scale processes
Focus 2: Basin-scale ecosystem dynamics
Focus 3: Changing Ecosystems
Focus 4: Coastal seas and society

The SECOS II projects builds upon the SECOS I achievements that aims to understand, determine and specify sediment services in the German Baltic Sea. Sediment functions are modes of deposition of discarded material, transformation of eutrophic substances into non-reactive forms, detoxification processes, sediment stabilization, regulation of biodiversity, regulation of production patterns, just to name a few positive effects considered by society. Negative functions in this respect can be the production of hydrogen sulfide, emission of green-house gases, negative effects on biodiversity. SECOS II will close important knowledge gaps still open after SECOS I phase, to assess such sediment functions and synthesise the available knowledge in a form that the available information is usable for the use of scientific, political and administrative stakeholders. Thus, SECOS II aims for a better understanding of transport, exchange and interaction processes between water and sediments, will provide a mapping tools for areal quantification of structural and biogeochemical properties linked to sediment functions. To do so, SECOS II aims for the extension and application of a marine ecosystem service evaluation framework, that covers the German Baltic Sea, spatially integrates natural scientific data, model simulation results and socio-economic aspects into an evaluation tool that visualises the societal benefits and serves as an umbrella for the integration of marine policies. The outcome is envisaged as the integration and provision of spatial data and maps (Baltic Sea Atlas) as a scientific basis for the implementation of major marine and coastal policies (Marine Strategy Framework Directive, Water Framework Directive, Habitat Directive).

Guiding principles for our work in the second phase of SECOS are a) a focus on data aggregation, analysis and spatial extrapolation, b) the focus on aspects with immediate relevance to descriptors and indicators in the Marine Strategy Framework Directive and c) the provision of products with high relevance for policies and management. All synthesized data will, if scientifically useful, be spatial extrapolated and presented in the Baltic Sea Atlas, a WEBGIS – application which is linked with the KüNO Portal ad thereby with the MDI-DE data portal.

SECOS II is accordingly structured to fullfill its tasks. Workpackage (WP) 1 will be in charge of the coordination of the project, the synthesis and integration of results and findings and the dissemination of the products. The Baltic Sea Atlas is the key product of this WP and SECOS as a whole. Therefore WP 2 will concentrate of filling serious gaps of knowledge for mapping and modelling of sediment properties, biodiversity and habitat classification. Linking the inventory of substances in the Baltic Sea sediments with functional properties, evaluate the function of benthic communities, and model the resulting sediment services under changing environmental conditions are the subtasks of this WP 2. The quantification of the transport of fluids, gases, nutrients and metals across the sediment-water-interface in SECOS key regions is the task of WP 3. WP 4 will provide an ecosystem service assessment for the German Baltic Sea including a spatial integration of indicators and ecosystem services for the areas.


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