The goals of this project are, i) to provide a scientific basis to support decision making in environmental quality and biological resource management, and ii) to evaluate the effects of anthropogenic stress on the structure and functioning of the biota.
ERSEM is a comprehensive ecosystem model which dynamically simulates the large scale cycling of organic carbon, oxygen and the macronutrients nitrogen, phosphor and silicon over the seasonal cycle in the North Sea. The model consists of an interlinked set of modules, describing the biological and chemical processes in the stratified or nonstratified water column and in the benthic system, as forced by light and temperature. Physical transport is included by driving the model with the output of physical circulation and dispersion models.
The model is generic in that it can be set up for any temperate shelf sea area by replacing the physical description of the North Sea by the appropriate one of another area. The biological and chemical processes contain no site dependence. The model is run on UNIX workstations using the SEASAME simulation modelling package.
A modular generic ecosystem model for the European Regional Seas will be developed. The model will be structured such that the existing biological and chemical modules can easily be replaced by state-of-the-art modules that are being developed by the participating institutes. The modular approach is selected to facilitate step-wise improvements to the model by exchanging modules. This model consisting of an interlinked set of modules describing the biological and chemical processes in the stratified or non-stratified watercolumn, including benthic processes, forms the basis of a spatially differentiated ecosystem model. The spatial differentiation is accomplished by combining the watercolumn model with the outputs from physical circulation and dispersion models. Coupling the watercolumn model with the physical model of another regional sea (e.g. the Adriatic) should make the whole model suitable for application to that site.
Funding SchemeCSC - Cost-sharing contracts
PL1 3DH Plymouth
AB11 9DB Aberdeen
AB9 1FX Aberdeen
G1 1BA Glasgow