Economic and ecosystem effects of fishing on the Northeast US shelf
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Economic and ecosystem effects of fishing on the Northeast US shelf

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  • Journal Title:
    Frontiers in Marine Science
  • Description:
    Modeling tools that can demonstrate possible consequences of strategies designed to operationalize ecosystem-based fisheries management (EBFM) should be able to address tradeoffs over a wide suite of considerations representing the scope of marine management objectives. Coupled ecological-economic modeling, where models for ecological and economic subsystems are linked through their inputs and outputs, allows for quantification of such tradeoffs. Here, we link the harvest output from fishery management scenarios implemented in an end-to-end ecosystem model (Atlantis) to an input–output regional economic model for the Northeast United States to calculate changes in socio-economic indicators, including the consequences of management action for regional sales, wages, and employment. We implement three simple scenarios (maintain, decrease, or increase current fishing effort), and compare model-projected values for systematic and sector-specific indicators. Systematic indicators revealed different ecological and economic outcomes, with large ecological responses and clear tradeoffs among the catch and biomass of species groups. Economic indicators for the region responded similarly to fishery yield; however, changes in total sales did not match those in landed catch. Under increased fishing effort, a lower proportional increase in sales relative to total landed catch arose due to increased yield from lower value species groups. Average fisheries income changed little among scenarios, but was highest when effort was maintained at current levels, likely a reflection of fleet and catch stability. Our results serve to demonstrate that consequences of management may be felt disproportionately among species through the region and across different fisheries sectors. With our coupled modeling approach of passing Atlantis ecosystem model outputs to an input–output economic model, we were able to assess effects of fisheries management across a broader suite of indicators that have relevance for policymakers across multiple objectives.
  • Source:
    Front. Mar. Sci. 6:133.
  • Document Type:
  • Rights Information:
    CC BY
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