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Black Sea

2019-01-01
Todorova, Nadezhda
Alyomov, Sergey
Chiotoroiu, Brindusa
Fach, Bettina
Osadchaya, Tatyana
Rangelov, Miroslav
Salihoğlu, Barış
Vasilev, Vasil
The Black Sea is a deep (approx. 2200 m), semienclosed European basin with 87% of the volume being anoxic, which leads to several consequences for its biodiversity. Challenges due to climate changes as well as high anthropogenic impacts have led to intense study of the Black Sea’s environmental future. Although its area is only approximately 410,000 km2, the Black Sea receives drainage from almost one-third of continental Europe, and so it has hydrological inputs and influences from a huge area. It borders six countries with diverse climatic and socioeconomic circumstances. Its role in human activities dates back to the earliest times of European history, which partly explains the impacts it has received. Recent past periods of high eutrophication and overfishing of top predators are now a part of history, but they triggered a change in the Black Sea system to a new state that damaged its resilience. Previously, the whole sea was close to collapse, but today pressures have changed and now include invasive species, more limited fresh water input, global changes in atmospheric dynamics, and others that lead to unpredictable changes, which, along with human economic activities, make the future of the Black Sea the subject of intense scientific interest.