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Simulation of human activities dynamic in coastal sea: the SIMARIS project

Date: November 04, 2013 at 18:54 GMT

Coastal seas, the marine part of the coastal zone, are subjected to multiple pressures linked to the development of numerous human activities. These activities create complex interactions which could lead to conflict of use and the risk of environmental degradation. There is therefore a need for tools able to produce relevant information on marine activities for both public institutions and private operators. As part of a study into the social acceptability of a Marine Renewable Energy project, it is indispensable to be able to evaluate its impact on the progress of human activities which maybe present on site.
To answer to this need for information, the Terra Maris society, which specialises in using Geographic Information System (GIS) adapted to Integrated Coastal Zone Management (ICZM), is working in collaboration with Geomer laboratory (LETG UMR 6554 CNRS) in order to create the SIMARIS simulator. This project, financed by the Brittany Region (France), aims to develop a software system able to represent the progress of human marine activities in space (cartography) and time (modelling), dependent on various constraints of practice (environmental, meteorological, legal, economic) and with a global and intersectorial vision.
Among the possible applications, SIMARIS aims to produce a cartographic information to evaluate the site conditions in the case of an infrastructure project which could impact on the progress of human activities. The proposed methodology consists of a hierarchical superimposing of mapping of the zones of potential human activities according to the level of impact created by the infrastructure on their progress. The objective is to produce a synthetic information useful to contribute to :
- create the basis of a consultation process to accompany the preliminary studies of the
- evaluate conflicts of spatial use,
- evaluate the economic impact on existing activities (in case of compensation),
- propose an optimal installation zone. 

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