Societal perspective

Work package 4 addresses the social perspective and prepares the information generated in work packages 1 to 3 for decision-makers. For this purpose, the following questions should be answered: Who are the relevant decision-makers? What do the decision-making processes look like? What information do they need to be able to make informed decisions? In which legal framework are they - both the decision-makers and the decisions themselves - embedded? How can the information be provided in the best possible way?

Stakeholder identification and analysis

In work package 4, GERICS begins by identifying and analyzing the relevant stakeholders. First of all, a range of stakeholders who are active in the areas of marine and climate protection as well as climate change are identified on the basis of a project, literature and internet search. These can include political institutions (e.g. federal or state ministries), administrative institutions (e.g. upper federal or state authorities such as the Federal Environment Agency or the Lower Saxony State Agency for Water Management, Coastal Defence and Nature Conservation), NGOs and associations (e.g. NABU, BUND or fishing associations), research institutions, government organizations (e.g. OSPAR or HELCOM), companies, etc. Based on stakeholder analysis methods, a matrix is then created that allows the key players to be identified.

Legal framework

Parallel to the stakeholder identification and analysis, the Walter Schücking Institute of International Law (WSI) in Kiel is analyzing the legal framework within which the identified actors act. To this end, the current international and European regulations on marine carbon storage and their interpretation by the countries bordering the North and Baltic Seas will first be examined. The assessment will include climate change and nature conservation regulations, as the latter plays an important role in marine carbon storage. Furthermore, our research will therefore focus on the extent to which there is an obligation to consider certain areas in marine environmental law for the specific purposes of carbon storage, either implicitly or explicitly.

Current regulations for increased uptake of greenhouse gases into the ocean focus on the potential negative impacts on the marine environment, including flora and fauna, but do not consider the potential positive impacts on the global climate. Similar issues play a role at the regional level. European Union (EU) laws and regulations tend to develop faster and are more detailed than those of international law. The EU has detailed regulations on nature conservation areas (Natura 2000) and guidelines on how to achieve good environmental status in the marine environment (Marine Strategy Framework Directive). CARBOSTORE will focus on the question of whether and to what extent these regulations are suitable for climate change mitigation and/or adaptation.

Preparation of project results

For these analyses, interviews are conducted with the stakeholders classified as relevant and workshops are organized. In this way, the decision-making situations, the information requirements and possible instruments to cover these information requirements are increasingly specified in an iterative process.

In cooperation with the stakeholders involved, and on the basis of their information requirements, project results and background information are made available in the form of fact sheets, the so-called Climate Focus Papers. This involves the focused preparation of scientific results for experts and other interested parties on new topics. Complex scientific correlations are presented in a target group-oriented, comprehensible and graphically prepared form. As part of CARBOSTORE, two Climate Focus Papers on natural carbon storage in the North and Baltic Seas are being developed: the first fact sheet provides an overview of carbon storage and fluxes in the water column and in marine sediment. The second fact sheet looks at possible changes in marine carbon stocks under the influence of climate change and human disturbances such as nutrient inputs from rivers.


Dr. Erik van Doorn

Coordinator work package 4

Walther-Schücking-Institute for International Law

Phone: + 49 431 880 2041

E-mail contact

Dr. Jörg Cortekar

Coordinator work package 4

Climate Service Center Germany

Phone: + 49 40 226 338 445

E-mail contact