Gulf of Maine Council's Ecosystem Indicators Program (ESIP)

Project Description
The Ecosystem Indicator Partnership (ESIP) is a committee of the Gulf of Maine Council on the Marine Environment. ESIP is developing indicators for the Gulf of Maine and integrating regional data for a new Web-based reporting system for marine ecosystem monitoring. Activities of ESIP initially center on convening regional practitioners in six indicator areas: coastal development, contaminants and pathogens, eutrophication, aquatic habitat, fisheries and aquaculture, and climate change.

Decision-makers in the Gulf of Maine and Bay of Fundy region will possess the necessary information to preserve ecological integrity and to sustain economically and socially healthy human communities. Regional ecosystem indicators, developed in a manner that is guided by science and supported by routine monitoring, demonstrate patterns of change in the ecosystem. By presenting and interpreting these indicators in biennial state of the environment reports, information will be communicated in a manner that decision-makers at all societal levels can use to shape their priorities and guide their choices. The gulf-wide insights provided through indicators and state of the environment reports will integrate across multiple jurisdictional boundaries that exist within the Gulf ecosystem and will complement other information used by decision-makers. By creating links among science, management, ecosystem, and community goals at both regional and local levels, this information will help decision-makers understand the larger implications of their choices.

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