The diversity of marine life is key to the functioning of the coastal environment. A rich level of biodiversity has a positive influence on the services the seas provide to humans, such as food, tourism, and general health (Duffy, 2003). It is therefore important to understand how the differing levels of the ecosystem contribute to the whole. With this understanding it is possible to identify areas that require particular attention and protection. Through scientific research, areas of concern can be highlighted and proper measures taken to ensure the continued success of the ecosystem, through proper funding and enforcement of environmental policy and legislation.
Topics covered in this section include:
- Food Webs and Ecosystem Levels
- Special Protected Areas (SPAs)
- Special Areas of Conservation (SACs)
- Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) and Reserves
- Scientific Research
- Awareness and Costs