Legal aspects of the ecosystem approach

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Aspects of law on ecosystem based management ...

Ecosystem-based management is a word commonly used to guide the marine ecosystem- and resource management into becoming sustainable and holistic. But how does it work from a legal perspective? A team of legal scientists within the project 'Legal Approaches to Controlling Emissions of Nutrients in the Baltic Sea Region' have been studying national laws in different Baltic Sea countries in order to understand how they adapt to the “ecosystem approach”.

... in four Baltic Sea countries

Within the project a cooperation has been initiated between Stockholm University and the Universities of Copenhagen, Gdansk and Tartu, where six different legal scientists have conducted country studies which are used as basis for a comparative analysis. Regulation of sewage treatment and agricultural activities have been studied and compared, and the potential and challenges of ecosystems approach in regulation thus analysed.

Legal frameworks for an ecosystem-based management of the Baltic Sea

Are the regulations that steer Baltic Sea management ecosystem-based?

Using an ecosystem approach in managing for example fisheries and eutrophication seems to be something that most Baltic Sea countries strive for, but how is that implemented in the binding laws and regulations? To illuminate that was the purpose of the conference Towards an ecosystem-based legal framework for the Baltic Sea held at Stockholm University on October 7th 2014.

A transdisciplinary conference

Towards an ecosystem-based legal framework for the Baltic Sea
See the expert-lectures in the filmed sessions; law and ecology, law on fisheries, law on eutrophication and a concluding panel discussion with participation by managers and stakeholders.

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Project frame

The research about the 'legal approaches to controlling emissions of nutrients in the Baltic Sea region' was initiated in January 2012 by Stockholm Environmental Law and Policy Centre (SELPC) at the Faculty of law, Stockholm University. The project is funded by the research programme BEAM and carried out by the legal scientist Annika K. Nilsson. 

Key researcher
Annika K. Nilsson
, Faculty of Law, Uppsala University, Uppsala universitet


Results from the analysis of the country studies was presented at the Conference: Towards an ecosystem-based legal framework for the Baltic Sea, hosted by the Stockholm Environmental Law and Policy Centre (SELPC)  and Baltic Sea Ecosystem Adaptive Management (BEAM), at Stockholm University, in cooperation with the Swedish Agency for Marine and Water Management (HaV).

Filmed lectures available!

Video summary

Klick play and enlarge frame!