The Baltic Sea is affected by and subjected to a multitude of natural and anthropogenic factors, for example eutrophication, loading of environmental contaminants and overfishing. These factors have contributed to considerable adverse effects on the ecosystem level.

Project background

The Swedish Government Offices has requested a review identifying the current state of scientific knowledge regarding environmental research in the Baltic Sea. Responsible for the process are the Swedish Environmental Protection Agency (SEPA) and the Swedish Agency for Marine and Water Management (SWAM), in cooperation with the Swedish Chemicals Agency (KEMI) and the Swedish Research Council for Environment, Agricultural Sciences and Spatial Planning (FORMAS).

Aims of review

The Stockholm University Baltic Sea Centre has been assigned to lead the project. This short project, between September and December 2013, is a first stage in compiling existing research achievements for the period 2003-2013, and to identify major research gaps in scientific knowledge regarding the environmental conditions of the Baltic Sea.

This study will focus on the following subject areas:

  • Eutrophication
  • Environmental contaminants / reduced health status in organisms
  • Fish and fisheries
  • Climate change / acidification
  • Invasive species / genetic aspects of Baltic populations
  • Maritime exploitation
  • Changes in populations of seabirds, coastal fish and mammals
  • Food web interactions

The project will include an international Advisory Expert Group, consisting of persons with strong international scientific merits. In addition, a number of interviews will be conducted with national and international experts.

Text by: Marmar Nekoro