Environmental Research Institute
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Coastal and Marine Ecosystems

New Zealand has the fourth largest exclusive economic zone in the world with extensive fisheries and mineral deposits. The coastal environment faces increasing pressure and conflicts of use from urban development, aquaculture development, recreational use, subsistence living, and mineral and sand exploitation.  Additionally, iwi and hapu have claims to customary use of the foreshore, as well as growing commercial interests. A biodiversity census and an understanding of the biogeography are crucial for the management of these resources and environmental well-being. Marine spatial planning will help manage the conflicting uses and needs of different groups.

Areas of research expertise include:

  • Biodiversity
  • Soil biogeochemistry
  • Chemical ecology
  • Climate change ecology
  • Ecosystem dynamics
  • Estuarine ecology and sedimentology
  • Microbiology
  • Sustainable aquaculture – impacts and development
  • Physical oceanography
  • Tsunamis and hazards
  • Coastal planning and design
  • Remote sensing and GIS

For more information on this area of research see:

The Coastal Marine Field Station

The Coastal Marine Field Station is involved in teaching, environmental monitoring and coastal and marine research and discovery. It has become a major centre of marine research excellence in the Bay of Plenty region.

The Coastal Marine Group

The Coastal Marine Group (CMG) is a specialist niche operator in shallow water mapping and surveying, meeting the needs of researchers, managers, and developers of New Zealand’s marine and water resources.



Other ERI research themes

Featured Researcher

Associate Professor Karin Bryan
Physical Oceanography

Researcher Profiles »