In a large-scale project, maps of the biology of the Swedish seabed were produced as a basis for marine environmental measures and other planning.
The Swedish Environmental Protection Agency was in 2007 commissioned by the Government to compile biological data on Swedish marine habitats and produce spatially modelled maps and GIS layers. The work should also comprise the digitalisation of old depth data carried out by the Swedish Maritime Administration, and the Swedish Geological Survey’s efforts in converting marine geological data into maps of bottom surface substrate. The aim was that the results would constitute a useful basis for marine management and planning, such as projections and probations for wind power.
Within the project, AquaBiota was responsible for spatial modelling and production of maps and GIS layers, as well as writing texts on this. The Swedish Environmental Protection Agency was responsible for the project and acted as editor of the report in collaboration with AquaBiota. The commission was carried out in close cooperation with the Swedish Maritime Administration, the Swedish Geological Survey and consultant company HAFOK.
The results of the habitat modelling are primarily shown as maps (read more about spatial modelling here). The modelling was carried out at three geographical levels; national (the Swedish coast), regional (e.g. the Gulf of Bothnia), and local exemplified by three pilot areas.
The intention of the report is to show the potential of GIS modelling and to stimulate a continuation of the development of spatial knowledge on the distribution of marine habitats and species. The report also shows the importance of statistically reliable data and the risks with defective GIS layers. It is hoped that the report inspires and facilitates the management of the marine environment and increases the chances of including knowledge of the distribution of marine ecosystems in management and physical planning. The report also emphasises the importance of cooperation among authorities that manage basic marine data, and that this cooperation shall be continued and developed further.
Report: Naturtyper på havets botten baserat på art- och habitatmodellering (in Swedish with English summary). Appendices 1. Appendices 2.