Case Studies

NECCTON Case Studies

Modelling and projecting fisheries potential in the arctic Atlantic Ocean

Main Focus: Fishery Management

Goals: Assess the consequences of climate change on fish biomass and therefore the fisheries potential in future climate scenarios.

Associated stakeholder: ICES-WGINOR (Working Group on Integrated Ecosystem Assessments for the Norwegian Sea) and ICES-WGIBAR (Working Group on the Integrated Assessments of the Barents Sea)

NECCTON Products Used:Fish biomass and small pelagics biomass


Marine Forecasting Center: ARC

Other Case Studies

Case Study Topic Ensemble of species distribution models to determine hot spots of aggregation in support of management plans and Marine Protected Area definition in the Mediterranean Sea
Main Focus Fishery Management
Goals Determine hot spots of aggregation to support:
  • Management plans
  • Fisheries Regulated areas (FRA),
  • Marine Protected areas (MPA)
Associated stakeholder Food and Agriculture Organisation - General Fisheries Commission for the Mediterranean (GFCM)
NECCTON Products Used
  • ESD-MED (ensemble Species Distribution models) applied to the Mediterranean Sea
  • ESD-MED based on survey data coupled with biogeochemical (LTL) outputs from MED-BFM
Marine Forecasting Center MED
aquaculture farm area
Case Study Topic Mapping sources of pollutants transported towards Mediterranean aquaculture farm areas
Main Focus Fishery Management
Goals To explore the usefulness of new Copernicus Marine Service capability for mapping and forecasting pollutant transport for Mediterranean aquaculture farming
Associated stakeholder

Food and Agriculture Organisation and Fugro

Testimonial on importance of NECCTON contribution Dr. Laura Gomez Navarro, IMEDEA (Spain) and Utrecht University (Netherlands)

NECCTON Products Used New Copernicus Marine Service product that maps and forecast pollutants (micro-macro plastic, oil, trace metals, POPs) in marine ecosystems
Marine Forecasting Center MED
bottom of the sea
Case Study Topic Natura 2000 marine protected areas in the Adriatic Sea
Main Focus Biodiversity Conservation
  • Application of marine spatial planning methods to monitoring effectiveness of biodiversity conservation in a MPA in the Adriatic Sea (HR3000469 - Viški akvatorij)
Associated stakeholder Blue World Institute of Marine Research and Conservation
NECCTON Products Used
  • Environmental conditions
  • Mapping of relevant benthos species 
  • Habitat maps for small pelagic and unspecified apex predator, multispecies distribution maps from Ecospace model 
  • Multiple pressure maps
Marine Forecasting Center MED
Biodiversity conservation
Case Study Topic Biodiversity conservation in the North West Black Sea 
Main Focus Biodiversity Conservation
Goals Mapping the impact of fish trawling on ecosystem functioning in the north-western Black Sea.
Associated stakeholder ICES Working Group on Fisheries Benthic Impact and Trade-offs
NECCTON Products Used
  • Maps of benthic traits
  • Maps of benthic species biomass
Marine Forecasting Center BS
Case Study Topic Climate-smart Marine Protected Area planning in the North West European Shelf
Main Focus Biodiversity Conservation
Goals • Spatial meta-analysis to show where a climate signal is projected to emerge for multiple parameters related to biodiversity conservation.
• Maps showing areas of climate change hotspots/bright spots, overlaid with locations of current/planned MPAs and other significant features.
Associated stakeholder UNEP - World Conservation Monitoring Centre.
NECCTON Products Used Projections of physics, biogeochemistry and Lower Trophic Levels for the North West Shelf
Marine Forecasting Center NWS
Small pelagic fish
Case Study Topic Small pelagic fish in the Bay of Biscay
Main Focus Fishery Management

• To understand and to simulate the past and future dynamics of small pelagic fish in the Bay of Biscay, including the effects of environmental conditions (temperature, plankton dynamics) and human pressure (fishing).
• To build robust projections by combining multiple higher trophic level and lower trophic level models and evaluate uncertainty (models ensemble)
• To identify the key drivers of the food web dynamics, and how they vary in time and space

Associated stakeholder ICES Working Group on Ecosystem Assessment of Western European Shelf Seas
NECCTON Products Used

Small pelagic fish biomass, and unspecified fish biomass from:

  • Ecosystem models
  • Species distribution models
  • Species population models
NECCTON Partners Ifremer, MOi, DTU,PML
Marine Forecasting Center NWS
Monitoring plankton diversity
Case Study Topic Monitoring plankton diversity and dynamics in the Parc Naturel Marin d'Iroise (PNMI)
Main Focus Biodiversity Conservation
Goals Phyto- and Zooplankton surveys by PNMI
  • Classical counting under a microscope (phytoplankton)
  • Quantitative imaging of zooplankton using Zooscan
  • Some Metabarcoding (eDNA)
Estimating zooplankton functional diversity
  • To inform the models
  • To test the correlation with sardine catch
  • Impact of zooplankton size on sardine stock
Associated stakeholder Office Français de la Biodiversité, Parc Naturel Marin d'Iroise (OFB)
NECCTON Products Used
  • physics & Lower trophic level outputs
  • Zooplankton diversity fields of the Copernicus Marine Service Global /IBI model 
  • Fish biomass fields of the Copernicus Marine Service Global/IBI model 
  • Correlation between the Ushant fronts (physics), zooplankton, and fish in the model
Marine Forecasting Center IBI
pollution of marine protected areas
Case Study Topic Monitoring pollution of marine protected areas surrounding Svalbard
Main Focus Biodiversity Conservation
Goals To explore & demonstrate that we can provide complementary information on the biogeochemical conditions, pollution and plastics, as well as biomass for zooplankton and fish at the sites of the protected marine Areas in the vicinity of Svalbard.
Associated stakeholder International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN)
NECCTON Products Used
  • Meso-zooplankton 
  • Dissolved organic matter (DOM) and particulate organic matter (POM)
  • Fish biomass
  • Small pelagic biomass (GLO) (important for sea birds),
  • micro-plastic,
  • Persistent organic pollutants (POPs) and emerging organic contaminants (EOCs). 
Marine Forecasting Center ARC
Baltic Sea
Case Study Topic Marine protected area monitoring and assessment in the Baltic Sea
Main Focus Biodiversity Conservation
Goals Develop ways to use NECCTON (and Copernicus Marine Service ) products for Marine Protected Area monitoring and assessment in the German part of the Baltic Sea, with focus on biodiversity and fisheries.
Associated stakeholder HELCOM
NECCTON Products Used • Mesozooplankton biomass
• Dissolved organic matter (DOM) and particulate organic matter (POM)
• Benthic biogeochemistry
• Small pelagic Biomass
• Unspecified fish biomass
Marine Forecasting Center BAL
Case Study Topic Spatial Management of Tuna Stocks and Fisheries under Climate Change
Main Focus Fishery Management
Goals Provide a demonstrator allowing users (stakeholders) to run projections of changes (e.g., 30 years) of key tuna species with fishing scenarios including spatial management measures and selected climate IPCC scenarios of greenhouse gas release
Associated stakeholder Pacific community (SPC), International Seafood Sustainability Foundation, SF, IC,Food and Agriculture Organisation.
Stakeholder Testimonials:
Dr. Hilario Murua,  Senior Scientist, ISSF (International Seafood Sustainability Foundation)

Dr. Kim Stobberup, Manager/Technical Adviser, Project Management Unit (PMU-NFITD)
NECCTON Products Used

Historical (hindcast) and future (projections under IPCC scenarios) simulations for ocean variables (temperature, currents, primary production, dissolved oxygen, zooplankton and micronekton)

NECCTON Partners MOi
Marine Forecasting Center GLO
Whale in the ocean
Case Study Topic Monitoring marine mammals in the Azores region
Main Focus Biodiversity Conservation
Goals • Assess the feasibility of conducting a monitoring of the common and spotted dolphin
• Evaluate the impact of climate change on the distribution of the species
Associated stakeholder Azores Regional Directorate of Maritime Affairs
NECCTON Products Used
  • Pelagic lower trophic level products: mesozooplankton, micronekton 
  • The species distribution model: NAWH-cetaceans 
Marine Forecasting Center GLO
Pelagic fish
Case Study Topic Forecasting climate change impact on potential catches of open ocean large pelagic fish
Main Focus Fishery Management
Goals • What is the future potential fisheries production in the open oceans?
• How will climate change impact the balance between functional groups (small/large pelagics etc.)?
Associated stakeholder Fish-MIP
NECCTON Products Used
Marine Forecasting Center GLO

Want to learn more about the project?


14 July 2024|News

Interactive ecosystem modelling workshop

NECCTON played a key role in the interactive ecosystem modelling training workshop held at Plymouth Marine Laboratory (PML) as a finale to the Advances in Marine Ecosystem Modelling Research (AMEMR) Symposium.

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11 July 2024|News


Many researchers from the NECCTON project have actively participated in the AMEMR 2024 conference (Advances in Marine Ecosystem Modelling Research), sharing exciting results from the first year of our project. 

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24 April 2024|News

NECCTON at the Ocean Decade Conference 2024

The 2024 Ocean Decade Conference, held in Barcelona from April 10 to 12 and co-organized by UNESCO’s Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC/UNESCO), brought together over 1,500 participants from 124 countries and drew over 3,000 online viewers. Serving as the culmination of Ocean Decade Week with 120 Satellite Events (April 8-12), the conference's main outcome was the Barcelona Statement. This statement outlines priority...

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01 March 2024|News

NECCTON Project Endorsed by UN Ocean Decade Programme

NECCTON Project Endorsed by UN Ocean Decade Programme: Advancing Marine Biodiversity Conservation
The NECCTON is proud to announce its endorsement by the UN Ocean Decade Programme, as a project of the Marine Life 2030 programme, reconfirming its commitment to safeguarding the marine ecosystems. This endorsement signifies a significant milestone in NECCTON's mission to improve the monitoring and management of our...

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06 February 2024|News

NECCTON Releases Best Practices Guide for Model Development

NECCTON is dedicated to enhancing the Copernicus Marine Service, and this week announces the release of its concise guide for biogeochemical/ecological model development. This document outlines practical strategies for model implementation, fostering interoperability across CMEMS Monitoring and Forecasting Centres (MFCs). 

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17 January 2024|News

NECCTON new video

We are pleased to share with you our first project video. This short video introduces the wide range of activities and research developments that will be undertaken by the team, highlighting how they will be useful in support of Copernicus Marine Service and wider user community. 

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24 November 2023|News

Better models for ocean conservation: Horizon Europe guarantee

Through a Horizon Europe guarantee grant, the UK is continuing to provide improved monitoring of the marine ecosystem. 

Around the globe, there’s a growing awareness of the importance of the seas for all life on our planet. And if we are to protect the marine environment accurate monitoring and prediction of its behaviour is crucial, we cannot manage what we do not observe.

In Europe, the Copernicus Marine Service...

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30 October 2023|News

NECCTON's Latest: Reports on Advancements in Key Products

We're pleased to announce the release of a comprehensive series of reports that unveil the innovative products our project aims to develop across various key areas. At NECCTON, we're dedicated to pushing the boundaries of innovation, and these reports underscore our commitment to delivering advanced solutions.

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12 July 2023|News

NECCTON's first Virtual Science Meeting

NECCTON's first virtual science meeting was a great success. Providing an opportunity for the whole team to gather and share details of scientific advancements in the first six months of the project. 

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03 July 2023|News

NECCTON Co-Design Stakeholder Workshop

Last week, the NECCTON Stakeholder Workshop: Co-design of Future Products was held virtually. This two-day workshop took place on June 28th and 29th with the aim of presenting NECCTON's future products and gathering stakeholder needs. The first public event of NECCTON attracted over 100 participants, including key stakeholders, project scientists, and potential users of NECCTON products.

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28 June 2023|News

Advancing the Conservation of Ocean Biodiversity through Copernicus Marine Service Evolution

The New Copernicus Capability for Tropic Ocean Networks project (NECCTON) aims to expand the Copernicus Marine Service product catalogue by delivering new and improved biogeochemical products, by means of new models of higher trophic levels, the benthic habitat, and of marine pollution. Launched in January 2023, the project received funding under a Horizon Europe Call for the evolution of the Copernicus Marine Service and will run...

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