Study Group: Common Ecosystem Reference Points across PICES Member Countries
  • Acronym: SG-CERP
  • Parent Committee: SB
  • Term: Oct. 2015 - Oct. 2016
  • Chair: Elliott Lee Hazen (USA)
Statement of Purpose:

Managing ecosystems under a changing climate requires flexibility in order to facilitate resilient ecosystems that satisfy desired ecological and societal goals. For example, the combination of high fishing rates, poor climatic conditions and high predation pressures are likely to produce less favorable management outcomes than the same fishing rates and predation pressures under good climatic conditions. This type of observation motivates the need for an approach to management that includes dynamic reference points that reflect the variable marine environment and a coupled social-ecological system.   Identifying such ecosystem reference points in relation to climatic variables or key ecological species is a primary goal, but a critical gap, at this time in many PICES member countries. To move forward on this front, we need 1) methodologies for determining how ecological (e.g. trophic) interactions can be directly included in establishing reference points, 2) an examination of how climate variability and change might (should?) be incorporated into the determination of biological reference points, and 3) a methodological framework for identifying non-linearities, that might lead to surprises, in common ecosystem indicators.

Terms of Reference
  1. Describe the societal needs and goals that underlie the establishment of reference points across PICES member nations, and determine those that are comparable.
  2. Examine data availability for geographic areas and time periods of particularly strong climate influence & fisheries dependence within specific North Pacific ecosystems, fish stocks, and fishing communities.
  3. Develop a heuristic model to examine climate forcing, ecosystem, and fishery responses to selected reference points.
  4. Together these elements will contribute to Objective 1.1 of the FUTURE Science Plan to understand what determines “an ecosystem’s intrinsic resilience and vulnerability to natural and anthropogenic forcing”.
  5. Assess the efficacy of and refine the terms of reference for a potential future working group supporting FUTURE goals on “Common Ecosystem reference points as a common currency across PICES member countries".
  6. SG will begin discussions on this subject intersessionally by correspondence, and will meet for a full day to discuss these issues at PICES-2016.
Annual Meetings



Members as of November 2016
Dr. Jennifer L. Boldt
Fisheries and Oceans Canada
Pacific Biological Station
3190 Hammond Bay Rd.
Nanaimo, BC
Canada V9T 6N7
Dr. Qing Yan
National Marine Environmental Monitoring Center
42 Linghe St.
Dalian, China, PR 116023
Dr. Robert Blasiak
Laboratory of Global Fisheries Science
The University of Tokyo
1-1-1 Yayoi, Bunkyo-ku
Tokyo, Japan 113-8657
Dr. Kazumi Wakita
School of Marine Science and Technology
Tokai University
3-20-1 Orido, Shimizu-ku
Shizuoka, Japan 424-8610
Dr. Jung Hee Cho
Korea Maritime Institute
26 Haeyang-ro 301 Beon-gil, Yeongdo-gu
Busan, Korea, R 606-080
Dr. Jung Hwa Choi
National Institute of Fisheries Sciences
Eastern South Fisheries Science Center
397-68, Sanyangilju-ro, Sanyang-eup
Tongyeong-si, Korea, R 53085
Prof. Chung Il Lee
Department of Marine Bioscience
Gangneung-Wonju National University
7 Jukhen-gil
Gangneung-si, Korea, R 25457
Dr. Elliott Lee Hazen
Environmental Research Division
Southwest Fisheries Science Center (SWFSC), NMFS, NOAA
99 Pacific St., Suite 255A
Pacific Grove, CA
Dr. Mary Hunsicker
Northwest Fisheries Science Center (NWFSC), NMFS, NOAA
Hatfield Marine Science Center
2032 S. OSU Dr.
Newport, OR