Sustainable Fisheries

Healthy Fish for a Healthy Ocean

Tested Approaches for Climate-Ready Fishery Management

Fisheries are already experiencing the impacts of climate change, from shifting stocks and reduced stock productivity to disasters, marine heatwaves and unexpected events. To rise to the challenge of achieving sustainable management of our fisheries under climate change, managers, scientists, fishermen and others must work together and take action to implement solutions. Because each fishery has unique characteristics and there are many different impacts of climate change on fisheries, there is no single silver bullet solution that will make fisheries climate-ready. Instead, fishery managers must employ a range of options that can help them understand, predict, plan for and adapt to climate impacts on fisheries.

The good news is that there is a suite of different approaches now available that can address different challenges for climate-ready fisheries, and many have been tested and used on the water. These tools draw on knowledge and techniques from many fields and perspectives, and each has something valuable to offer managers, including the Regional Fishery Management Councils in the United States.

Here, we provide an overview of some of these approaches. We cover the relevance of each approach for addressing climate change, share some strengths and limitations, offer an example where managers have used the approach, provide factors a Council should account for when considering pursuing an approach and link to additional resources with more information.

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