Applying ensemble ecosystem model projections to future-proof marine conservation planning in the Northwest Atlantic Ocean

Projections of climate change impacts on species and ecosystems can be used to inform marine conservation planning. This paper presents future trajectories of climate change impacts on key physical, biochemical, and ecological drivers across the Northwest Atlantic Ocean and evaluates the consequences for Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) and Other Effective area-based Conservation Measures (OECMs) in Atlantic Canada. We identify were climate change hotspots and refugia are located, where environmental drivers are projected to change the most or least, and how these areas overlap with existing MPAs and OECMs. Our results provide important long-term context for climate change adaptation and future-proofing spatial marine conservation planning in Canada and the Northwest Atlantic region.

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