Marine Ecosystems and Global Change

Edited by Manuel Barange, John Field, Roger Harris, Eileen Hofmann, Ian Perry, and Francisco Werner. 2010, Oxford University Press, 464 pages. US $150 at

Environmental change in the ocean can take many forms. Climate change, biodiversity loss, intensive exploitation of natural resources – these changes all have significant impacts on the world’s oceans. This new book assembles knowledge on the structure and function of marine ecosystems and how these ecosystems respond to changes, including predictions on the responses of marine ecosystems to specific global change scenarios (e.g., changes in sea surface temperature, acidification of seawater).

The publication also describes management strategies for responding to global changes in marine systems. A full chapter is dedicated to ecosystem-based management.

The publication is a synthesis of more than two decades of research conducted under the Global Ocean Ecosystems Dynamics program (GLOBEC), a massive, multinational, interdisciplinary initiative. Its primary audience is graduate-level students and professional researchers in marine biology and oceanography, although it may provide useful information to resource managers as well.

5 Easy Pieces: The Impact of Fisheries on Marine Ecosystems

By Daniel Pauly. 2010, Island Press, 236 pages. US $25 at

This book is largely a compilation of five papers originally published in the journals Nature andScience between 1995 and 2003, demonstrating the substantial impacts of modern industrial fisheries on marine ecosystems. It traces a shift in scientific thought over that period as researchers grew to realize the global breadth of overfishing. Specifically the book addresses the concepts of fishing down food webs, worldwide fisheries catch trends, and sustainability in global fisheries.

Daniel Pauly was a co-author of each of the included articles. In this book, he provides additional material to provide context for each paper, including how the popular news media reported on the research at the time of original publication. He also reflects on ways that scientific consensus emerges from discussions both within and outside the scientific community.