Table of Contents

Measuring Environmental Degradation

Measuring Environmental Degradation

Developing Pressure Indicators for Europe

Edited by Anil Markandya and Nick Dale

Measuring Environmental Degradation is a unique book that provides a comprehensive yet concise overview of the key issues of environmental significance addressed as part of the Eurostat ‘Environmental Pressure Indicators Project’. The book is part of the ‘Towards Environmental Pressure Indicators for the EU’ (TEPI) series that has resulted from the project.

Chapter 12: Introduction

A. Markandya and N. Dale

Subjects: environment, environmental sociology


A. Markandya and N. Dale 1. THE MARINE ENVIRONMENT AND COASTAL ZONES POLICY FIELD It is very difficult to define precisely or place clear boundaries around the Marine Environment and Coastal Zones, due to the complex and interconnected problems of this policy field. A useful working definition used by the US Commission on Marine Science, Engineering and Resources and quoted in the Dobrís Assessment (EEA, 1995), is: ˇˇ The part of the land affected by its proximity to the sea, and that part of the sea affected by its proximity to the land as the extent to which man’s land-based activities have a measurable influence on water chemistry and marine ecology. As an interface between land and sea, coastal regions are particularly valuable as ecosystems. Within Europe there is an exceptionally wide range of important and fragile natural coastal habitats covering arctic, temperate and subtropical climate zones. Pressure from human activities, including urbanization, industrialization, fishing, agriculture, energy generation and tourism has led to increasing degradation of the coastal environment and the necessity to produce pressure indicators for this policy field as an aid to the policy response. The multidimensional nature of this policy field resulted in a diverse set of proposed pressure indicators in the first-round questionnaire launched by Eurostat.1 The indicators included in the second-round questionnaire were primarily developed from those indicators that had been proposed at least ten times by the first-round questionnaire experts. These were grouped into four broad categories: G G G...