Future scenarios

The distribution of marine species and biotopes is often limited by different environmental factors such as salinity, turbidity or temperature. Salinity for example limits the occurrence of marine and freshwater species. Plant growth is dependent on light availability whereas temperature affects the energy consumption of benthic fauna.

Climate change will change the environmental conditions in the northern Bothnian bay generating a shift in environmental factors and characteristics of the region. To evaluate the consequences of climate change on marine ecosystems, knowledge of how abiotic environmental factors affect species distribution is important.

In this project we will make predictions of how the marine environment could look in the year 2120 by using the most recent climate models. We will also estimate how climate change affects the distribution of marine species and biotopes. For example, predictions of changes in salinity and/or turbidity help us to model future suitable geographical regions for underwater species susceptible to these changes. Predictions of the future marine environment facilitates spatial planning and allows for a head start for preparation in relation to climate change.