Report of the Working Group on aquaculture (WGAQUA), 18-22 March 2013, Palavas, France

Type Expertise
Date 2013
Language English
Ref. ICES CM 2013/SSGHIE:13
Other localization
Author(s) ICES
Contributor(s) Callier MyriamORCID
Sponsor ICES
Abstract The WGAQUA, chaired by Karin Boxaspen, Norway, Peter Cranford, Canada and Pauline Kamermans, The Netherlands, met for the first time from 18 to 22 March 2013 in Palavas, France and was attended by 24 participants from 12 ICES countries (An-nex 1). Based on a discussion on the direction of the new Aquaculture Expert Group it was recognized that aquaculture activities take place in a natural dynamic envi-ronment, where effects are not the same for each scale (local, regional, national, inter-national). Science-based thresholds or tipping points and uncertainties need to be identified as well as the reversibility of a change. Links with stakeholders are very important. A synthesis was prepared of reports by ICES SGs and WGs related to sus-tainable aquaculture on the environmental dependence and effects of aquaculture and on science advice provided. This activity clearly demonstrates that ICES has been highly active over the last decade in reviewing the state of knowledge of the envi-ronmental dependence and effects of aquaculture and in the provision of advice and recommendations related to the integrated management of sustainable aquaculture (e.g. performance indicators, risk assessments, monitoring programs, generic and specific management frameworks, strengthening stakeholder inclusion in decision-making). The review of past activities will strengthen linkages between the WGAQUA and other expert groups and was helpful in identifying aquaculture issues that have not yet received adequate attention from ICES. Various suggested emerg-ing topics were compared to the reports, recommendations and advice of earlier groups and there is a relative large overlap. This signifies that some of the topics while maybe not new or emerging they still stand as unresolved and central. The top-ics relevant to WGAQUA were separated from topics more thematically suited for other groups of ICES. Eight new ToRs were identified. These were grouped under three themes: Benthic Effects led by Raymond Bannister, Pest Management led by Dave Jackson and Ecosystem Interactions led by Chris McKindsey. Since the nature of the meeting was mostly planning and discussing topics to work on in the new EG no science highlights can be reported in Year 1. A Theme Session for the Annual Sci-ence Conference in 2014 was developed. Title: The application of science for ecosys-tem-based management of aquaculture. Member states have asked if ICES can give advice related to the sustainability of aquaculture. WGAQUA was formed, in part, to facilitate the provision of science advice on aquaculture issues and to attract a broad mix of finfish, shellfish and macroalgal aquaculture scientists. The membership of WGAQUA currently stands at 45 scientists from 14 ICES member states. WGAQUA chairs will contact delegates to seek additional representation for macroalgae plus remaining ICES states. A Science Advice co-chair has been tasked specifically with coordinating group responses to formal advisory requests. WGAQUA recommends that ACOM initiate the process of drafting specific advice questions for presentation to WGAQUA members at the 2014 annual meeting. The Science Advice chair is avail-able to participate as required in developing these questions and for ensuring a time-ly response by WGAQUA to each query. Science advice on aquaculture usually includes not only ecological and technical, but also socio-economic aspects. The pre-sent membership does not include experts with a socio-economic back ground. SGSA was created specifically to deal with these issues. Therefore, WGQUA recommends SGSA be invited to join WGAQUA to increase expertise.
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