Importance for education and outreach to comprehend synergy between management efforts and climate changes for the status of commercial fish stocks: a case of northern Russian fisheries

Lead Author Dmitry, Lajus
Institution Contact St. Petersburg State University, 7/9 Universitetskaya nab., St. Petersburg 199034, Russia. 7/9 Universitetskaya nab., St. Petersburg 199034, Russia.
Co-Authors Daria Smagina, St. Petersburg State University, Russia. Julia Lajus, National Research University Higher School of Economics, Russia
Theme Theme 1: Vulnerability of Arctic Environments
Session Name 1.8 Novel approaches to communicate research facts and predictions of the future of Arctic marine biota to non-scientific stakeholders
Datetime Fri, Sep 16, 2016 10:45 AM - 11:00 AM
Presentation Type Oral
Abstract text Until the 1970-80s role of climate in changes of stock abundance of commercial fish species was not clearly recognized and these changes were mostly explained by effectiveness or inaccuracy of management efforts. During the last decades significance of climate fluctuations and global climate change for fish stocks status had been increasingly recognized. It became clear that in most cases serious changes in large fish stocks were due to interaction of management efforts and climate changes. In particular, now most researchers agree that a decline of Atlanto-Scandian herring stock in the beginning of the 1970s and collapse of Atlantic cod fisheries in the north-western Atlantic waters in the 1980s were caused by unfavorable climate conditions which were interacting with inadequate management. Last years it is observed a good status of important commercial fish stocks in the Russian Northern seas, in particularly cod fisheries in the Barents Sea, and salmon fisheries in the North Pacific. Our interviews with stakeholders, who are involved in fisheries management of these stocks, conducted in the framework of the study of process of ecological certification according to standards of the Marine Stewardship Council, showed that managers believe that the improvement of status of these stocks is mostly due to effective management decisions, although most of other stakeholders, who are not directly involved in the management, often consider climate changes as a main factor of increase of commercial fish populations. We consider that good understanding of mechanisms of dynamics of commercial fish stocks is only possible while taking into consideration various drivers of their population dynamics, not only management decisions. Now, in a period of global warming, climate changes evidently play an important role, especially in high latitude areas such as northern seas of Russia. We argue that they have to be considered in a synergy with management efforts and that it is very important to take this into consideration in educational programs and stakeholder outreach to enhance resilience of marine ecosystems.
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