A modelling tool for biogeochemical changes prediction and incorporation of climate change into the implementation of an MPA Network in the Gulf of St. Lawrence

ACCASP # Que 11

Description

The map above illustrates the simulated oxygen concentration of the bottom waters off Canada’s East Coast in July 2006. The purple line in the lower St. Lawrence Estuary delineates the hypoxic zone. Credit: DFO, Nicolas Lambert

This project will further refine and validate a climate modelling tool to provide geographically detailed projections of future changes in biogeochemical conditions for the Gulf of St. Lawrence, Scotian Shelf and the Gulf of Main. The tool will inform the implementation of a Marine Protected Areas Network in the Gulf of St. Lawrence and many other resource- and ecosystem-related decisions. It can also be used to evaluate:

  • habitat changes and, therefore, future changes in the distribution of commercial species;
  • changes in habitat quality for certain species and the resulting impact on their condition (e.g., acidification of waters inhabited by lobster, shrimps and snow crabs); and
  • changes in ecosystem carrying capacity in relation to primary production.

Mapping these changes will provide information for a study of the impact of climate change on lobster in the southern Gulf of St. Lawrence, and can also be used to inform siting decisions for marine protected areas on the Scotian Shelf.

Program Name

Aquatic Climate Change Adaptation Services Program (ACCASP)

Year(s)

2014 - 2015

Ecoregion(s)

Atlantic: Gulf of St. Lawrence, St. Lawrence Estuary

Atlantic: Gulf of Maine, Scotian Shelf

Principal Investigator(s)

Diane Lavoie
Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Quebec Region
Tel.: (418) 775-0608
Email: Diane.Lavoie@dfo-mpo.gc.ca

Guy Cantin
Ecosystems and Fisheries Manager
Tel.: (418) 775-0873
Email: Guy.Cantin@dfo-mpo.gc.ca

Team Member(s)

Joël Chassé, DFO, Gulf region

Denis Gilbert, DFO, Quebec region

Michel Starr, DFO, Quebec region

Dave Brickman, DFO, Maritimes

Kumiko Azetsu-Scott, DFO, Maritimes

William Perrie, DFO, Maritimes

Zhenzia Long, DFO, Maritimes

K. Fennel, Dalhousie University

Collaborative Partner(s)

Dalhousie University

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