CliSAP successfully finished in 2018. Climate research continues in the Cluster of Excellence "CLICCS".

Future Protection for the North Sea and the Baltic: Coastal Researchers Lay the Groundwork


Today coastal researchers from the Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht met with peers from Hamburg, Bremen, Bremerhaven, Wilhelmshaven and Rostock, as well as representatives of the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), at the KlimaCampus to kick off a major joint project. Over the next three years, the group of experts will e.g. analyze processes at work on the ocean floor, establishing the scientific groundwork needed to implement the European Marine Strategy Framework Directive.

The ocean floor is not only a habitat, but also performs a number of important ecosystem functions - for example, sediments filter pollutants out of seawater. As such, one of coastal researchers’ goals is to identify indicators for the status of the ocean floor that are sensitive to man-made influences. “With the right indicators, we can draw key conclusions about the state of the ecosystem,” explains Prof. Dr. Kay Emeis, Director of the Institute of Coastal Research at the Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht and coordinator of the joint project “North Sea Observation and Assessment of Habitats” (NOAH). NOAH is one of five BMBF-funded joint projects about to be launched.

Members of the joint project NOAH include the German Federal Maritime and Hydrographic Agency, the Thünen Institute of Sea Fisheries, and the Alfred Wegener Institute in Senckenberg am Meer, as well as academic research groups from the University of Bremen’s Center for Marine Environmental Sciences, the University of Hamburg’s Center for Earth System Research and Sustainability (CEN), and the Hamburg University of Applied Sciences.

The project’s research work will be in line with the declared goals of the European Marine Strategy Framework Directive, according to which a “good state of our marine environs” is to be achieved by 2020. German’s Federal Ministry of Research has allocated six million euros for the overall project.

To the press release (german)