PICES 2011 Annual Meeting
Mechanisms of Marine Ecosystem Reorganization in the North Pacific Ocean
October 14-23, 2011, Khabarovsk, Russia
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Scientific Program

The keynote lecture at the Science Board Symposium, titled “Current reorganizations in marine ecosystem in relation to climate change: Dominance of global or regional factors?” (by Drs. Vyacheslav Shuntov and Olga Temnykh, Pacific Research Fisheries Centre) will be given by Dr. Olga Temnykh.


S1: Science Board Symposium (Oct. 17, ¾-day)
Mechanisms of Marine Ecosystem Reorganization in the North Pacific Ocean

Sinjae Yoo (SB), Atsushi Tsuda (BIO), Mikhail Stepanenko (FIS), Steven Rumrill (MEQ), Hiroya Sugisaki (MONITOR), Kyung-Il Chang (POC), Toru Suzuki (TCODE), Thomas Therriault (AICE), Hiroaki Saito (COVE), Robin Brown (SOFE) and Fangli Qiao (China)

Invited Speakers:
Sukgeun Jung (Jeju National University, Korea)
Maurice Levasseur (Université Laval, Canada)
William Sydeman (Farallon Institute for Advanced Ecosystem Research, U.S.A.)
Mitsuo Uematsu (University of Tokyo, Japan)
Igor Volvenko (TINRO-Center, Russia)

Marine ecosystem variation often is attributed to natural or anthropogenic stressors, especially climatic or hydrological forcing. These studies typically show correlations among ecosystem characteristics and indices of global warming or climatic oscillations. Also, changes in biological communities often are described in terms of their correlative relationships to these large-scale indices. While these studies have produced interesting results, the underlying mechanisms responsible for ecosystem change have not been totally identified, especially when it comes to understanding how populations, communities, and ecosystems are reorganized, sometimes dramatically, over short time periods. Complexity, arising from varying influences of biotic and abiotic factors on multiple spatial and temporal scales, challenges our understanding of these processes. Because of our insufficient understanding of ecological mechanisms for oceanic regions, it is not unusual to find that what has happened in the past cannot adequately predict what will happen in the future. Thus, the focus of this Science Board Symposium will be on describing mechanisms of ecosystem change and reorganization. The influence of factors operating at various temporal and spatial scales will be considered. This symposium will lead to a better understanding of factors that control species composition and ecosystem structure in the North Pacific Ocean, and improve our ability to predict system responses to future stressors, including climate change.

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S2: BIO/POC Topic Session (Oct. 18, 1-day)
Mechanisms of physical-biological coupling forcing biological "hotspots"

Co-sponsored by ICES

Jürgen Alheit (ICES/Germany), Elliott Hazen (PICES/U.S.A.), Oleg Katugin (PICES/Russia), Robert Suryan (PICES/U.S.A.), Yutaka Watanuki (PICES/Japan) and Ichiro Yasuda (PICES/Japan)

Invited Speakers:
Jürgen Alheit (Leibniz Institute for Baltic Sea Research, Germany)
Igor Belkin (University of Rhode Island, U.S.A.)
Sei-Ichi Saitoh (Hokkaido University, Japan)
Robert M. Suryan (Oregon State University, U.S.A.)

This session will examine the physical and oceanographic factors that correspond to ecological or economic "hotspots" in the North Pacific and North Atlantic and their marginal seas. For the Pacific, this session will focus on the Kuroshio/Oyashio extensions and ecotone, the intersection of the Sea of Okhotsk and the western North Pacific (Kuril Islands region), and the Western Bering Sea. For the Atlantic, this session will focus on the North Sea, the intersection of the Gulf Stream and Labrador Current, in addition to tidally driven systems such as the Gulf of Maine and Gulf of St. Lawrence. "Hotspots" can broadly be defined as areas encompassing high species diversity, high abundance of individuals, especially of important indicator species, or areas of high economic value. Interdisciplinary contributions on physical-biological coupling and resulting seasonal or year-round "hotspots" in primary to tertiary productivity are invited. This includes data on physics, phyto- and zooplankton, forage fish, and upper trophic level predators (e.g., fish, seabirds, mammals, humans). We are particularly interested in simultaneous multi-species multi-use hotspots (i.e., sites of ecological importance that overlap highly with sites of economic value) and potential changes in hotspots under future climate change scenarios. Modeling and empirical studies are encouraged. We will solicit a special publication in the primary literature pending subscription to the session.

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S3: FIS Topic Session (Oct. 21, ½-day)
Population dynamics, trophic interactions and management of cephalopods in the North Pacific ecosystems

John Field (U.S.A.), Yasunori Sakurai (Japan) and Mikhail Zuev (Russia)

Invited Speakers:
Mary Hunsicker (Oregon State University, U.S.A.)
Chingis Nigmatullin (AtlantNIRO, Russia)
Mitsuo Sakai (National Research Institute of Far Seas Fisheries, Japan)

In most coastal and oceanic ecosystems, cephalopods are or can be an influential driver of food web dynamics due to their rapid growth, high population turnover rates. They also represent a major, and apparently growing, fraction of total catches, both in the Northern Pacific and throughout the world's oceans. In contrast to the generally slower population response rates of most finfish, cephalopod populations tend to exhibit boom-bust cycles, challenging traditional management strategies. As events along the West Coast of the United States and Canada have shown, they may also represent highly visible indicators of ecosystem change, and both the causes and the consequences of the jumbo squid range expansion on the California Current ecosystem are questions of growing interest as a result. This session will focus on the ecology and management of cephalopods in North Pacific ecosystems, specifically on the known or suspected drivers of population dynamics, and applied or potential management strategies that are (or may be) robust to such dynamics. Papers on the role of cephalopods within marine ecosystems, particularly with respect to trophic interactions and the strategic management of marine ecosystems (e.g., the role of cephalopods as forage versus fisheries targets, or as competitors for species targeted by commercial fisheries), are highly encouraged.

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S4: FIS/POC Topic Session (Oct. 20, 1-day)
Recent changes of North Pacific climate and marine ecosystems: Implications for dynamics of the dominant species

Co-sponsored by ICES

Sukyung Kang (Korea), James Overland (U.S.A.), Akihiko Yatsu (Japan) and Skip McKinnell (PICES)

Invited Speakers:
Jürgen Alheit (Leibniz Institute for Baltic Sea Research, Germany)
Emanuele Di Lorenzo (Georgia Institute of Technology, U.S.A.)

The coincidence of multidecadal-scale alternations of dominant marine fish species coupled with multidecadal-scale "Climatic Jumps" created a concept of the Regime Shift. The recently published PICES North Pacific Ecosystem Status Report noted that the frequency of these events appears to have increased, and various indicators suggest that their amplitude has increased as well. The Arctic Oscillation Index, for example, reached an extreme negative anomaly during January-March of 2010, which brought a severe winter to much of the Northern Hemisphere, while other areas were warmed equivalently by the effects of the 2009/10 El Niño. The summer of 2010 saw record-setting high temperatures in some PICES member countries, accompanied by an abrupt shift in the tropics from El Niño to La Niña in July 2010. In the northwestern Pacific, after decades at low levels, sardine abundance has begun to increase, while the anchovy abundance is declining; perhaps signaling a new Regime. This session will review recent ocean/climate variability, with emphasis on what has occurred from 2009 to 2010. It will focus on the major ecological components of North Pacific marine ecosystems, particularly commercially important fish species. Papers on mechanistic linkages between population dynamics of marine species and environmental conditions are especially encouraged.

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S5: MEQ Topic Session (Oct. 18, ½-day)
Harmful algal blooms in a changing world

Tatiana Morozova (Russia) and Mark Wells (U.S.A.)

Invited Speaker:
Feixue Fu (University of Southern California, U.S.A.)

The impacts of regional and global climate change and other anthropogenic forcing on the initiation, frequency and severity of harmful algal blooms (HABs) are widely anticipated but are difficult to identify. Often these "blooms" reflect subtle adjustments in the relative proportion of HAB species within a larger, more abundant phytoplankton community. In others, new blooms may reflect the possible climate-driven range extension of HAB species, but direct evidence that previous environmental conditions were unfavorable for bloom development normally is lacking. Ascribing HAB events to specific, but slowly evolving driving forces, will demand comparative observations among similar but geographically separated ecosystems. This session invites papers that focus on emerging toxic and ecosystem disruptive HAB events as well as changing plankton assemblages that are evolving towards more frequent or intense HAB incidents. Papers addressing long-term time series data, land use changes, effects of macro- or micro-nutrient stress on cell physiology, trophic interactions, and the impacts of changing riverine runoff, ocean development (e.g., aquaculture, wind turbines), and ocean acidification are particularly encouraged. The goal of the session is to help formulate a better understanding of conditions enhancing the success of HAB species.

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S6: MEQ/FIS Topic Session (Oct. 18, ½-day)
Identification and characterization of environmental interactions of marine aquaculture in the North Pacific

Katsuyuki Abo (Japan), Brett Dumbauld (U.S.A.) and Galina Gavrilova (Russia)

Invited Speakers:
Shuanling Dong (Ocean University of China, PR China)
Tomoko Sakami (Tohoku National Fisheries Research Institute, Japan)

Marine aquaculture is an important economic and social activity within PICES member countries. To ensure that development of aquaculture is environmentally and economically sustainable we need to: 1) improve our understanding of interactions between marine aquaculture and the environment (including wild stocks of plants and animals, 2) develop methods to study and/or predict such interactions, and 3) devise ways to reduce negative impacts on the environment. To this end the PICES Working Group on Environmental Interactions of Marine Aquaculture has begun to characterize the nature of these interactions with a focus on the benthic environment and aquatic animal health. To align with the activities, papers for this session are solicited in the following areas: 1) identification and characterization of marine aquaculture-environmental interactions; 2) development of tools to identify and study such interactions; and 3) social science research related to aquaculture interactions with the marine environment.

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S7: MEQ/FUTURE Topic Session (Oct. 20, 1-day)
Land-sea interactions and anthropogenic impacts on biological productivity of North Pacific Ocean coastal ecosystems

Co-sponsored by NOWPAP

Masahide Kaeriyama (Japan), Olga Lukyanova (Russia), Steven Rumrill (U.S.A.) and Thomas Therriault (Canada)

Invited Speakers:
Neil Banas (University of Washington, U.S.A.)
Takayuki Shiraiwa (Hokkaido University, Japan)
Vladimir Shulkin (NOWPAP/POMRAC, Russia)
Jing Zhang (East China Normal University, PR China)

Land-sea interactions are widely recognized as an important component of coastal ecosystem processes throughout the North Pacific Region. Anthropogenic activities in upland and coastal areas can significantly alter the productivity of coastal ecosystems and disturb the communities that depend on them. Human activities such as pollution or overfishing can result in immediate and direct impacts on biological productivity. However, there are an increasing number of indirect impacts such as altering the flow of ecosystem-transboundary materials (ETMs) that are responsible for the enriched productivity of many northern coastal systems. In Asia, the dissolved iron that is transported from the Amur River basin into the Sea of Okhotsk and Oyashio Region is now recognized as a major regulator of the primary productivity in these coastal waters. Similarly, disruptions in the timing and amplitude of riverine discharges from the Columbia River Basin (Pacific Northwest) result in significant alterations of salinity regimes, sediment transport, biological productivity, and fisheries returns throughout the region influenced by the Columbia River plume. Anthropogenic impacts such as changes in land use, artificial river channelization, hydropower structures, and urbanization disrupt and alter the flow of ETMs thereby reducing the productivity in these coastal ecosystems. Furthermore, these alterations can lead to the manifestation of other stressors in coastal ecosystems such as jellyfish blooms, hypoxia events, and harmful algal bloom (HAB) outbreaks. This session will focus on: 1) how ETMs (e.g., dissolved iron, carbon and other elements) are transported from upland ecosystems into coastal ones; 2) what mechanisms regulate the supply of ETMs and how the downstream transport of these impact the productivity (primary production) of coastal systems; 3) how anthropogenic impacts disrupt the ETM system and resulting changes downstream including increased ecosystem vulnerability; 4) how anthropogenic impacts directly reduce coastal productivity; and 5) exploration of potential adaptive management strategies based on the ecosystem-approach to protect the ETM system to ensure sustainability of coastal ecosystems and stability for the coastal societies depending on them.

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S8: POC/FIS Topic Session (Oct. 21, ½-day)
Linking migratory fish behavior to end-to-end models

Co-sponsored by ICES

Enrique Curchitser (PICES/U.S.A.), Geir Huse (ICES/Norway), Shin-ichi Ito (PICES/Japan), Michio Kishi (PICES/Japan) and Skip McKinnell (PICES)

Invited Speakers:
Jerome Fiechter (University of California Santa Cruz, U.S.A.)
Kenneth Rose (Louisiana State University, U.S.A.)

In order to understand ecosystem response to climate impacts, End-to-End modeling (E2E) approaches are essential. One of the most difficult parts for E2E is the modeling of fish behavior migration. Fish behavior can be very complex; it is a consequence of genetics, physical, chemical and biological environments and their interaction. Learned behavior may also be a factor. Recently, new technology has been introduced to tagging equipment, and as a consequence data availability is vastly improved. Additionally, new technologies are used to investigate fish movements in laboratory settings. This new information is expected to improve our understanding of fish migration mechanism and contribute to the development of fish migration models. Furthermore, the development of high-resolution ecosystem models coupled to circulation models makes it possible to simulate fish migration in the context of realistic environmental fields. The purpose of this session is to understand the current state of development in modeling fish behavior and discuss future potential collaborations to improve fish migration models. This session anticipates presentations that discuss successes (and failures) in modeling migratory fish behavior. Presentations related to data availability for model evaluation of fish behavior are also welcome. Based on the results and opinions expressed at the session, the conveners would like to discuss the desirability of establishing a group that will focus its attention on developing and advancing the state of fish behavioral modeling.

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S9: MONITOR/POC/FUTURE Topic Session (Oct. 19, ½ day), (Oct. 20, ½ day)
How well do our models really work and what data do we need to check and improve them?

Co-sponsored by IMBER

Jack Barth (U.S.A.), Dake Chen (China), Michael Foreman (Canada), Phillip Mundy (U.S.A.), Young-Jae Ro (Korea) and Sei-Ichi Saitoh (Japan)

Invited Speakers:
Nikolay Diansky (Institute of Numerical Mathematics, Russia)
Yoichi Ishikwa (Kyoto University, Japan)
Alexander Kurapov (Oregon State University, U.S.A.)
Shoshiro Minobe (Hokkaido University, Japan)
Kenneth Rose (Louisiana State University, U.S.A.)

Given the importance of models to FUTURE, it is crucial to examine their skill and utility through comparison with data. Models are being used to study and forecast physical (atmospheric and oceanic circulation and mixing), chemical (air-sea fluxes, dissolved oxygen), biological (primary production, trophic dynamics) and fisheries (individual based modeling, migration pathways) processes. Climate forcing and coupling between processes is of prime importance. Presentations are invited over the range of modeling scales, from local to global, and from hours to decades. Contributions are also welcome identifying data sets that we currently have that are helpful for assessing model skill and what new data sets are needed and might be obtained through ocean observing efforts. Discussions of uncertainty in model predictions and ways to reduce that uncertainty are also invited.

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BIO Contributed Paper Session (Oct. 20, ½ day), (Oct. 21, ½ day)

Michael J. Dagg (U.S.A.) and Atsushi Tsuda (Japan)

This session invites oral and poster presentations on all aspects of biological oceanography in the North Pacific and its marginal seas that are not covered in Topic Sessions sponsored by the Biological Oceanography Committee (BIO).

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FIS Contributed Paper Session (Oct. 18, ½ day), (Oct. 19, ½ day)

Gordon H. Kruse (U.S.A.) and Mikhail Stepanenko (Russia)

This session invites papers addressing general topics in fishery science and fisheries oceanography in the North Pacific and its marginal seas, except those covered by Topic Sessions sponsored by the Fishery Science Committee (FIS).

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POC Contributed Paper Session (Oct. 18, ½ day), (Oct. 19, ½ day)

Kyung-Il Chang (Korea) and Michael G. Foreman (Canada)

Papers are invited on all aspects of physical oceanography and climate in the North Pacific and its marginal seas, except those covered by Topic Sessions sponsored by the Physical Oceanography and Climate Committee (POC).

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TCODE E-poster Session (Oct. 20, During Poster session) - CANCELLED
Data and data systems for validation of numerical models

Igor Shevchenko (Russia)

Significant physical, chemical, biological and fisheries information has been assembled from ocean monitoring and observing systems. Data and data products from these repositories are provided for users in many fields of ocean sciences. Contributors to this session will demonstrate standalone and web-based applications for exploring, viewing, analysing and distributing data and data products that can be used to force and/or evaluate the ocean circulation and ecosystem models that support the goals of FUTURE. Traditional poster presentations are also welcome. This session is linked with MONITOR/POC/FUTURE Topic Session on “How well do our models really work and what data do we need to check and improve them?”.

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W1: BIO Workshop (Oct. 14, 1-day) (Oct. 15, ½ day)
MEMIP-IV: Quantitative comparison of ecosystem models applied to North Pacific shelf ecosystems--humble pie or glee?

Harold P. Batchelder (U.S.A.), Shin-ichi Ito (Japan), Angelica Peña (Canada) and Yvette Spitz (U.S.A.)

Invited Speakers:
Jerome Fiechter (University of California Santa Cruz, U.S.A.)
Yvette Spitz (Oregon State University, U.S.A.)

The objective of the Marine Ecosystem Model Inter-comparison Project (MEMIP) is to compare the performance of various lower trophic level marine ecosystem simulation models at predicting the abundance and distribution of coastal zooplankton functional groups. During the series of workshops, three test beds (Newport, Seward, and A-Line) were selected, and eight potential ecosystem models (NPZD+, NAPZD+, NEMURO, COSINE, NPZD-Fe, Nemuro-Fe, Nemuro-K5 and Biology) were identified to be embedded in ROMS-2D models. The focus of this 4th MEMIP workshop will be quantitative model-model and model-data analysis and comparison of the results of the simulations. Prior to this workshop, different ecosystem models embedded in ROMS-2D will have simulated several 3-4 specific years at each test bed. At the workshop, the results of different ecosystem models within each test bed will be compared. The combination of different years, multiple ecosystem models and three regions should provide sufficient runs to enable ensemble-based estimates of the uncertainty of ecosystem hindcasts, which will provide information needed for assessing FUTURE coupled ecosystem-physical forecast products.

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W2: FIS Workshop (Oct. 15, 1-day)
Remote sensing techniques for HAB detection and monitoring

Co-sponsored by NOWPAP

Tatiana Orlova (PICES/Russia), Vera Trainer (PICES/U.S.A.) and Takafumi Yoshida (NOWPAP/Japan)

Invited Speakers:
Joji Ishizaka (Nagoya University, Japan)
Raphael Kudela (University of California Santa Cruz, U.S.A.)

Monitoring harmful algal blooms (HABs) and the environmental factors associated with their occurrence can often be improved by remote sensing. Satellite imagery can be used to help: (1) detect and identify HAB species or the oceanic features in which they reside, and (2) in mitigation of damage to fisheries and human health by HABs. However, the effective use of the data from these sensors is often hindered by a lack of skills to acquire, process, and interpret them. The goal of the workshop is to teach the basic skills needed to work independently with data from a variety of satellite sensors (e.g., SeaWiFS, MODIS, MERIS, AVHRR, and CZCS). This workshop may also include such themes as the fundamentals of bio-optics, pigment algorithms, primary production algorithms and, to a lesser extent, the underlying physical principals leading to the measurement of sea surface temperature, ocean wind speed and ocean topography. A series of lectures will describe research and monitoring efforts that currently use remote sensing for the study of HABs. The workshop will take place following the NOWPAP/PICES/WESTPAC young investigator training course on “Remote sensing data analysis” held on October 8-12, 2011, in Vladivostok, Russia.

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W3: MEQ Workshop (Oct. 14, 1-day)
Pollutants in a changing ocean: Refining indicator approaches in support of coastal management

Co-sponsored by GESAMP, ICES and IOC

Kris Cooreman (ICES/Belgium), Peter Kershaw (GESAMP/UK), Olga Lukyanova (PICES/Russia) and Peter Ross (PICES/Canada)

Invited Speakers:

Joel Baker (University Washington Tacoma, U.S.A.)
Kris Cooreman (ICES/Belgium)
Peter Kershaw (GESAMP/UK)
Annamalai Subramanian (Ehime University, Japan)

Many anthropogenic pollutants impact marine environmental quality, with coastal zones being particularly vulnerable. Persistent organic pollutants (POPs) are a concern because they magnify in food webs and present health risks to humans and wildlife. Other chemicals are less persistent, but may nonetheless impact the health of biota. While some pollution indicators are ensconced into monitoring and management regimes in different nations over space and time, new pollutant concerns may not yet be captured by existing protocols. These include "micro-plastics", the breakdown products of debris and other forms of structural pollutants, which can clog the gills of invertebrates and fish, and asphyxiate seabirds and marine mammals. In addition, these micro-plastics may adsorb some of the other chemical contaminants and transfer them to marine organisms. This workshop will review ways in which chemical and structural pollutants enter the marine environment, are transported through ocean currents and/or biological transport, and impact marine biota. The workshop will critically review several examples of pollution indicators used by different nations, as a basis for improving and/or expanding indicator approaches in the North Pacific Ocean. These examples will also critically evaluate the extent to which changing baselines (e.g., climate variability) may impact on source/transport/fate processes and effects on biota, and recommend means of improving the utility and reliability of current indicator / monitoring approaches in a changing world. The objectives of this workshop are to:

(1) Critically review 3-5 examples of currently used indicators of marine contamination in different PICES member nations (e.g., shellfish monitoring of PAHs, metals, persistent organic pollutants, fecal bacteria; POPs in seabird eggs and marine mammals); List advantages and disadvantages for each, and describe management/policy linkages; Consider the influence of changing climate on indicator performance and ways to address this.

(2) Review emergent pollutant concerns and in particular, examine the topic of plastics and micro-plastics as structural pollutants and as mechanisms for the transfer of contaminants to marine biota; Examine existing and/or new opportunities to establish indicator approaches to plastic pollution, and review sampling and analytical methods.

(3) From these applied examples/case studies, identify opportunities for future PICES activities on the topic of marine pollution:

a). evaluate feasibility of establishing Study Group on Marine Contaminants, including terms of reference, membership, and deliverables;
b). description of the scope of PICES/FUTURE activities that focus on contaminants in the North Pacific marine environment;
c). update and revise MEQ Action Plan elements on marine contaminants;
d). identify potential interactions with IOC/ICES/GESAMP/NOWPAP/NOAA programs that focus on contaminants in the marine environment.

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W4: POC/MONITOR/TCODE Workshop (Oct. 14, ¾-day)
Recent advances in monitoring and understanding of Asian marginal seas: 5 years of CREAMS/PICES EAST-I Program

Kyung-Il Chang (Korea), Toshitaka Gamo (Japan), Young-Shil Kang (Korea), Kyung-Ryul Kim (Korea), Vyacheslav Lobanov (Russia), Toru Suzuki (Japan) and Yury Zuenko (Russia)

Invited Speakers:
Sukgeun Jung (Jeju National University, Korea)
Tomoharu Senjyu (Kyushu University, Japan)

Under the auspices of the EAST-I program initiated and supervised by the CREAMS/PICES Advisory Panel, scientists from Japan, Korea and Russia have carried out many successful cruises in the East Asian marginal seas over the last 5 years. With the active discussion and promotion by CREAMS/PICES of a new EAST-II program focusing on the Yellow and East China Seas, it is timely to have a forum summarizing some important results obtained by the international cooperative efforts of EAST-I. This workshop welcomes studies on hydrography, circulation, biogeochemistry, and ecology and their variability in East Asian marginal seas in the PICES area and on effects of climate and long-term changes in the abiotic and biotic environments of this region.

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