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Fisheries Management and Climate Change in the Northeast Atlantic Ocean and the Baltic Sea

image of Fisheries Management and Climate Change in the Northeast Atlantic Ocean and the Baltic Sea

A conference on "Fisheries Management and Climate Change in the Northeast Atlantic Ocean and the Baltic Sea" was convened in Bergen, Norway, 17-18 April 2008. The themes covered included climate change-related physical and biological changes in the oceans and the implications for fisheries and aquaculture activities and their sustainable management. It was concluded that there is a need to design monitoring strategies to detect critical changes in species and ecosystems, implement responsive management that can adjust quickly, identify species and ecosystems that are sensitive to changes in climate, anticipate changes in distribution and prepare responses that avoid management conflicts, maintain (or rebuild) resilience of marine ecosystems and fish stocks, and understand the socio-economic consequences of climate change on fisheries. The research that is required to underpin the preceding must be interdisciplinary and ecosystem based. However, the fisheries and marine science sectors in the Nordic countries are currently underfinanced and, therefore, are unable to expand their activities to accomplish this.

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Changes in Climate, Fish Stocks and Aquaculture: Predictions of changing fish stock production, distribution and migrations in the Northeast Atlantic

Marine ecosystems are strongly influenced by climate and fisheries. The physical environment impacts the ecosystem through light, temperature, ocean currents and turbulence. It affects fish both as individuals and as populations. It impacts all layers in the food chain with the strongest impact tending to be in the lower layers, i.e. the plankton. Climate-induced changes in these lower levels can cause changes further up the food chain leading to indirect impacts on fish. As for fish populations, climate impacts recruitment, growth rates and abundance, both directly and indirectly through the food chain, and these aspects will together affect the productivity of populations. In addition, climate impacts the distribution and migration of fish populations.

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