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Mapping global human dependence on marine ecosystems.

Selig, Elizabeth R. and Hole, David G. and Allison, Edward H. and Arkema, Katie K. and McKinnon, Madeleine C. and Chu, Jingjie and de Sherbinin, Alex and Fisher, Brendan and Gallagher, Louise and Holland, Margaret B. and Ingram, Jane Carter and Rao, Nalini S. and Russell, Roly B. and Srebotnjak, Tanja and Teh, Lydia C.L. and Troëng, Sebastian and Turner, Will R. and Zvoleff, Alexander (2019) 'Mapping global human dependence on marine ecosystems.', Conservation letters., 12 (2). e12617.


Many human populations are dependent on marine ecosystems for a range of benefits, but we understand little about where and to what degree people rely on these ecosystem services. We created a new conceptual model to map the degree of human dependence on marine ecosystems based on the magnitude of the benefit, susceptibility of people to a loss of that benefit, and the availability of alternatives. We focused on mapping nutritional, economic, and coastal protection dependence, but our model is repeatable, scalable, applicable to other ecosystems, and designed to incorporate additional services and data. Here we show that dependence was highest for Pacific and Indian Ocean island nations and several West African countries. More than 775 million people live in areas with relatively high dependence scores. By identifying where and how people are dependent on marine ecosystems, our framework can be used to design more effective large‐scale management and policy interventions.

Item Type:Article
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Available under License - Creative Commons Attribution.
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Full text:(VoR) Version of Record
Available under License - Creative Commons Attribution.
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Publisher statement:This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. © 2018 The Authors.
Date accepted:30 October 2018
Date deposited:04 January 2019
Date of first online publication:19 December 2018
Date first made open access:No date available

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