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Ecosystem service information to benefit sustainability standards for commodity supply chains
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Ecology, Environment and Plant Sciences. Uppsala University, Sweden.
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2015 (English)In: Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, ISSN 0077-8923, E-ISSN 1749-6632, Vol. 1355, 77-97 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The growing base of information about ecosystem services generated by ecologists, economists, and other scientists could improve the implementation, monitoring, and evaluation of commodity-sourcing standards being adopted by corporations to mitigate risk in their supply chains and achieve sustainability goals. This review examines various ways that information about ecosystem services could facilitate compliance with and auditing of commodity-sourcing standards. We also identify gaps in the current state of knowledge on the ecological effectiveness of sustainability standards and demonstrate how ecosystem-service information could complement existing monitoring efforts to build credible evidence. This paper is a call to the ecosystem-service scientists to engage in this decision context and tailor the information they are generating to the needs of the standards community, which we argue would offer greater efficiency of standards implementation for producers and enhanced effectiveness for standard scheme owners and corporations, and should thus lead to more sustainable outcomes for people and nature.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. Vol. 1355, 77-97 p.
Keyword [en]
certifcation, implementation, evaluation, ecological effectiveness, corporate, outcomes
National Category
Ecology Environmental Sciences
Research subject
Marine Ecotoxicology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-124584DOI: 10.1111/nyas.12961ISI: 000369996800005PubMedID: 26555859OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-124584DiVA: diva2:890110
Available from: 2015-12-30 Created: 2015-12-30 Last updated: 2016-08-18Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Kind of turquoise: Effects of seafood eco-certification and sustainable consumption
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Kind of turquoise: Effects of seafood eco-certification and sustainable consumption
2016 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Aquaculture and fisheries hold promise for supplying a growing world population with healthy food produced without undermining the earth’s carrying capacity. However, just as livestock production and agriculture, seafood production can have negative environmental impacts and if a continuous or even increased supply is to be guaranteed, the pressure on affected ecosystems needs to be limited. Due in part to a perceived failure of other governance mechanisms in improving the environmental performance of the sector, a large number of voluntary market based standards for farmed and wild caught seafood have been developed. Nonetheless, the knowledge base on the extent to which implementation leads to environmental improvements remains limited. Moreover, the role of consumers in driving demand for eco-labeled seafood is presently an under-researched area. This thesis aims at reducing this knowledge gap through an examination of the potential environmental effectiveness of aquaculture eco-certification and internal, psychological variables predicted to be of importance for sustainable seafood consumption. Put differently, what is the potential of eco-certification in greening the blue revolution and fuel ‘turquoise growth’, and how can consumer demand be spurred?

In Paper I, the role of eco-certification in improving the growing aquaculture sector at large was explored. Results showed that environmental effects at global scale likely will be limited due to e.g. partial coverage of species groups and environmental impacts, and a lack of focus on Asian markets and consumers. In Paper II the environmental performance of eco-certified and non-certified mangrove-integrated shrimp farms in Vietnam was compared by using Life Cycle Assessment and put in relation to conventional, more intensive farms. While there was no substantial difference between certified and non-certified farms in terms of environmental impacts, emissions of greenhouse gasses were higher for mangrove-integrated than conventional farms due to mangrove land use change. The results from Paper III demonstrated that the body of literature investigating ecological effects of seafood eco-certification is limited. ‘Spatially explicit ecosystem service information’ (ES-information) on e.g. key ecosystem services and biodiversity in a given area is suggested to have potential to improve sustainability standards. Taking guidance from the pro-environmental behavior literature, consumers in Stockholm, Sweden were consulted on awareness of and attitudes towards eco-labeled seafood (Paper IV-V). Two variables, concern for environmental impacts and knowledge about seafood eco-labels were the best predictors for stated eco-labeled seafood purchasing. Moreover, there seemed to be a misalignment between consumers’ expectations on eco-labeled food in general and certification requirements for eco-labeled seafood.

From this set of findings, a number of improvements of current seafood eco-certification are suggested. First, include an LCA-perspective in standards to a higher degree than presently done and provide readily available ES-information in the implementation and evaluation phase of certification. Second, introduce standardized mechanisms for capturing potential environmental improvements over time. And finally, stimulate demand by targeting Asian consumers and markets as well as strengthen consumer eco-label awareness and emotional involvement.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Department of Ecology, Environment and Plant Sciences, Stockholm University, 2016. 65 p.
Keyword
eco-certification, eco-labeling, seafood, aquaculture, shrimp, LCA, consumer behavior
National Category
Environmental Sciences
Research subject
Marine Ecotoxicology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-132676 (URN)978-91-7649-486-8 (ISBN)
External cooperation:
Public defence
2016-10-07, Vivi Täckholmsalen (Q-salen), NPQ-huset, Frescativägen 20, Stockholm, 09:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Funder
Sida - Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency, SWE-2011-38
Note

At the time of the doctoral defense, the following paper was unpublished and had a status as follows: Paper 5: Manuscript.

 

Available from: 2016-09-14 Created: 2016-08-18 Last updated: 2016-09-14Bibliographically approved

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