Science Inventory

A resilience framework for chronic exposures: water quality and ecosystem services in coastal social-ecological systems

Citation:

Merrill, N., K. Mulvaney, D. Martin, Marty Chintala, W. Berry, T. Gleason, S. Balogh, AND A. Humphries. A resilience framework for chronic exposures: water quality and ecosystem services in coastal social-ecological systems. Coastal & Estuarine Research Federation (CERF) 24th Biennial Conference, Providence, RI, Rhode Island, November 06 - 09, 2017.

Impact/Purpose:

This work outlines a conceptual framework to coordinate scientific research on the resilience of coupled human and natural systems to slow moving, long-term challenges. Our intent is to provide a lens through which to conduct research to inform long-term community planning decisions pertaining to chronic water quality issues in coastal areas. We apply the resilience framework to Cape Cod’s (Barnstable County, Massachusetts, USA) coastal waters and communities and impacts from nitrogen pollution.

Description:

We outline a tailored resilience framework that applies ecosystem service concepts to coastal social-ecological systems (SES) affected by water quality degradation. Unlike acute coastal disturbances such as hurricanes or oil spills, water quality issues, particularly those related to nutrients, exist as more constant, slow-moving and frustratingly chronic problems. Because of their slow onset time, these problems should provide the opportunity for communities to mitigate and or adapt in a way which maintains the system’s structure and function, although experience shows this does not necessarily mean mitigation or adaptation will happen or has happened. Our intent is to provide a lens through which to conduct research to inform long-term community planning decisions pertaining to chronic water quality issues in coastal systems. We apply the resilience framework to Cape Cod’s (Barnstable County, Massachusetts, USA) coastal waters and communities and impacts from nitrogen over-enrichment. By working under a unified framework, research can be more appropriately directed to fill knowledge gaps to inform and facilitate management decisions that may lead to enhanced SES resilience. This entails investigating system feedbacks and improving our understanding of adaptive capacity, thereby enhancing the ability for self-correcting mechanisms within the SES.

Record Details:

Record Type: DOCUMENT (PRESENTATION/SLIDE)
Product Published Date: 11/06/2017
Record Last Revised: 12/11/2017
OMB Category: Other
Record ID: 338669

Organization:

U.S. ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY

OFFICE OF RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT

NATIONAL HEALTH AND ENVIRONMENTAL EFFECTS RESEARCH LABORATORY

ATLANTIC ECOLOGY DIVISION

MONITORING AND ASSESSMENT BRANCH