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Report of the Workshop to Review and Advise on EBSA Proposed Areas (WKEBSA)

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posted on 2022-12-23, 06:43 authored by ICESICES

WKEBSA reviewed the ecological evidence supporting the ten proposed EBSAs from the OSPAR/NEAFC/CBD Workshop of September 2011, as presented in the profor-mas attached as Annexes to that Report.  The review looked primarily at the refer-ences cited in the proformas, but often augmented those references with other publications and data sources.   In nine of the ten proposed EBSAs,WKEBSA came to different conclusions than were contained in the OSPAR/NEAFC/CBC Workshop, with regard to the rankings on the CBD EBSA criteria.   Specifically:
WKEBSA  made the following conclusions and proposals for a way forward:
1 – Reykjanes Ridge south of Iceland EEZ: Much area in the proposed EBSA does not meet any of the EBSA criteria.  A more restricted area down the spine of the mid-Atlantic Ridge and defined by depth ranges of deep-water coral and sponge concen-trations does meet several EBSA criteria and could go forward at this time.
2 – Charlie-Gibbs Fracture Zone and Sub-Polar Frontal Zone of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge: Some area in the proposed EBSA does not meet any of the EBSA criteria.  A complex combination of the area down the spine of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, the benthic area aligned with and close to the main fractures, and the water column in which the Sub-Polar Front is found throughout the year, does meet several EBSA criteria and could go forward at this time.   

3 – Mid-Atlantic Ridge north of the Azores:  Much area in the proposed EBSA does not meet any of the EBSA criteria.  A more restricted area down the spine of the mid-Atlantic Ridge and defined by depth ranges of deep-water coral and sponge concen-trations does meet several EBSA criteria and could go forward at this time. 

4. The Hatton and Rockall Banks and Hatton- Rockall Basin:  Much area in the pro-posed EBSA does not meet any of the EBSA criteria.  A more restricted area down to approximately 1500-1800 m depth but excluding the abyssal plain does meet several EBSA criteria and could go forward at this time.
5. Around Pedro Nunes and Hugo de Lacerda Seamounts:  The proposed EBSA is not supported well by the information presented in the proforma. There is a need for further analyzes of those data and additional data on seabird foraging and other in-formation, and another evaluation of the area against  the criteria, before scientifical-ly-based advice could be provide on what areas, if any meet EBSA criteria.
6. North east Azores-Biscay Rise: The proposed EBSA is not supported well by the information presented in the proforma. There is a need for further analyzes of those data and additional data on seabird foraging and other information, and another evaluation of the area against  the criteria, before scientifically-based advice could be provide on what areas, if any meet EBSA criteria.
7. Evlanov Seamount region: The proposed EBSA is not supported well by the infor-mation presented in the proforma. There is a need for further analyzes of those data and additional data on seabird foraging and other information, and another evalua-tion of the area against  the criteria, before scientifically-based advice could be pro-vide on what areas, if any meet EBSA criteria.

8. North-west of Azores EEZ: The proposed EBSA is not supported well by the in-formation presented in the proforma. There is a need for further analyzes of those data and additional data on seabird foraging and other information, and another evaluation of the area against  the criteria, before scientifically-based advice could be provide on what areas, if any meet EBSA criteria.
9. The Arctic Front – Greenland/Norwegian Seas:  Only a small part of the area pro-posed by the OSPAR/NEAFC/CBD Workshop as an EBSA was considered to possibly meet some of the criteria. However another part of the general area might meet some EBSA criteria.  There is a need for more analyses of productivity and diversity data for a more southerly part of the main area, and then a re-evaluation of the new results against the EBSA criteria, before any areas go forward as possibly meeting EBSA criteria.
10. The Arctic Ice:  The rationale for concluding that this area meets one or more EBSA criteria  can be improved, but the review by WKEBSA generally  supports the conclusions of the OSPAR/NEAFC/CBD workshop.

With regard to new proposed areas that meet EBSA criteria WKEBSA diod not have the information to evaluate completely new areas in the time available.  However, it presents a potential alterative configuration to the areas in proposed EBSAs 1,2,3 and 4, that would comprise two areas meeting EBSA criteria, once covering the specified depths of the entire mid-Atlantic Ridge, and one for the Charlie Gibbs Fracture Zone and pelagic area of the Sub-Polar Front.  Each of the two areas would have coherent but different ecological rationales.
With regard to existing management measures, WKEBSA tabulated a large number of measures currently in place by many bodies, primarily OSPAR and NEAFC, but also IMO, ISA, ASCOBANS and many other agencies.  Some of the measures are spatially targeted, but WKEBSA noted that many generic management measures do offer protection to biological and ecological features captured by EBSA criteria, and included them in its tabulation.  Without the information needed for a review of gaps in the effectiveness of the existing combination of diverse management measures WKEBSA did not propose any completely new management measures to fill gaps.  It did however summarize additional management measures that are under considera-tion or coming into force in the near future.   

History

Published under the auspices of the following ICES Steering Group or Committee

  • ACOM

Published under the auspices of the following ICES Expert Group or Strategic Initiative

WKEBSA; Workshops - ACOM

Series

ICES Expert Group Reports

Meeting details

27–31 May 2013; Copenhagen

Recommended citation

ICES. 2013. Report of the Workshop to Review and Advise on EBSA Proposed Areas (WKEBSA), 27 - 21 May 2013, ICES HQ, Copenhagen, Denmark. ICES CM 2013/ACOM:70. 127 pp. https://doi.org/10.17895/ices.pub.19282412