Report of the ICES Advisory Committee in Ecosystems, 2003
The ICES Advisory Committee on Ecosystems (ACE) met from 19 to 23 May 2003. During this meeting, ACE
prepared an initial response to the request from the European Commission Directorate General for Fisheries concerning the ecosystem impacts of industrial fishing. ACE also prepared advice, in addition to that in the 2002 ACE report, in response to EC requests on the by-catch of small cetaceans in fisheries and on the occurrence of cold-water corals that may be impacted by fisheries, as well as providing some further advice on other issues of concern to the EC in relation to the impacts of fishing on the ecosystem. Furthermore, ACE provided responses to requests from the Helsinki Commission on the status of populations of marine mammals in the Baltic marine area and advice on monitoring programmes to estimate the abundance of seals and other marine mammals in the Baltic Sea; ACE also provided brief additional material in relation to a request on marine habitat classification. In response to requests from the OSPAR Commission, ACE has prepared an extensive review, and advice for further development, of four of the Ecological Quality Objectives in the Pilot Project for the North Sea, as well as initial consideration of nine other Ecological Quality Elements that are not part of this Pilot Project. ACE also completed its review, begun in 2002, of the evidence for the justification for the proposed OSPAR Priority List of Threatened and Declining Species and Habitats.