Workshop 1 - Day 2


Christian Wexels Riser (UiT): Ecosystems and production in the Arctic


Geir Odd Johansen (IMR): Fish stocks distribution in the future: presenting the projects FishExChange and NorExChange.


Jan Idar Solbakken (SUC): The ACIA process


Eirik Mikkelsen/Arild Buanes (NORUT): Predicting the societal impact of climate change on fisheries. Preliminary results from the NorAcia-project.


Alf Håkon Hoel (UiT): Fisheries management and climate change

Christian Wexels Riser, Norwegian College of Fisheries Science, UiT.

Ecosystem dynamics and production in the Arctic

80% of Arctic Ocean water exchange through Fram Strait - ideal site for long-term studies of variability. Biological baseline data needed. Most of biomass organisms less than 1 mm. Most of the energy cycle in these organism. Ecosystem = biological community and its physical environment. Factors affecting energy flows: primary production, physical factors, biological interactions. Primary production: light critical in the Arctic. Ice cover critical. Physical factors: stratification and vertical mixing of nutrients. Biological interactions: match/mismatch - short, intense bloom. Species diversity. Arctic ecosystems are adapted to large variations in environmental conditions. The existence of organisms marginal in their niches.  SINMOD - scenarios w increased temperature - effect on primary production:   50 of Arctic Ocean shelves. Expect increased primary production there, but marine desert (like Pacific) over deep-water areas. Even in a 8C+ scenario does calanus F not enter the polar basin. But strong growth of C glacialis (6 times the energy content) over shelves, and northwards movement. Productivity can increase, but depends on nutrient supply. Complex systems - predictions difficult. 

Discussion: concept of ecosystem at various scales, problem of transfer from science sphere to policy sphere. Only ecosystems at a small scale that can be managed. 


Geir Odd Johansen, Institute of Marine Research.

Fish stocks distribution in the  future. (FishExchange/NorExchange)

Evaluate future of climate change on fish stocks in Barents Sea and Norwegian Sea - geographical distribution. Effect of changing temperatures. Develop scenarios. Most speculations about changes in distribution are just that, need for more analytical approaches. Also the fisheries - spatial distribution of catches. Data heterogeneity a challenge - climate data, model outputs, fish survey data, fisheries data. Common data framework. Data back to 1980. Spatial database - GIS. Barents Sea 2050: polar front stable in W, move N in E. Easterly shift in centre of distribution of fish 1980-2007. Task 4 - effects on industry: quota distribution, costs and revenues, fleet structure and landings. Challenge: separating effects of changes in temperature from other factors. “Fish don´t eat temperature” - distribution affected by distribution of prey. 

Discussion: access to data. 


Mikaela Aschan, Norwegian College of Fisheries Science, UiT.

Small pelagics, Barents Sea

Data 1992-2004. Increase in biodiversity since 2000. Growth in pelagics. DEfintion of regime shift: over 10 yrs, 3 trophic levels, temperature amplitude change >34%.  (Lees 2006). Warming: species also go deeper. 


Jan Idar Solbakken, Saami University College

The ACIA process and indigenous participation

AMAP tasked with climate change in 1993.  AMAP assessment of Arctic pollution issues in 1998. 1997 AEPS ministerial - continued mandate climate, contaminants. First Arctic Council ministerial in 1998, also CAFF into climate. 2 workshops AMAP/CAFF in 1998. Assessment Steering Committee established. 2000 ministerial adopted and established the ACIA. A science-based program, not a research program. Review process. 3 documents: science report, synthesis document, policy document. Indigenous knowledge - very local, presented in local language - difficult for outsiders to understand, and therefore need to involve local people in research. 


Eirik Mikkelsen/Arild Buanes, NORUT.

Predicting the societal impacts of climate change on fisheries.

Complex causal relationships. Non climate drivers of societal change. Learning from historical examples (cfr non-linearities). Adaptive capacity critical. Vulnerabilities: natural, socioeconomic, institutional. What is the unit of analysis - who/what is vulnerable, at what scale? Fisheries dependent communities - vulnerabilities. Complex issue - needs broad based approach, combination of top down and bottom up processes. Importance of contextualization. Paucity of baseline data - usual assemblage of fisheries data not satisfactory. Need for perspective analyses. 


Alf Håkon Hoel, University of Tromsø/Norwegian Polar Institute

Policy implications of climate change in fisheries

A policy in a given issue area can be defined as  objectives with associated policy measures. Climate change has implications for fisheries policy at the international as well as the domestic level. The fisheries governance system is a multi-level system, with decision-making at the global, regional, and domestic levels of governance. At the international level, rules exist for the distribution of fish stocks among countries. To now, this system has worked. Whether it will in the future, depends upon scale, velocity and trends of change. Policy tools at the domestic levels. Potential contribution to climate mitigation: fees, capacity reduction, less fuel consuming fishing methods. Capacity/effort reduction is good fisheries policy & good climate policy.



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Arne Eide,
Apr 3, 2009, 2:00 AM