Developing and evaluating adaptation options for marine fisheries on the move

Dr Emily Ogier1,2, Prof Gretta Pecl1,2

1Institute for Marine And Antarctic Studies, University Of Tasmania, Hobart, Australia, 2Centre for Marine Socioecology, Hobart, Australia


Planned adaptation to climate-driven changes in the distribution of marine species targeted by capture fisheries must, by necessity, interact with existing policy and management, as well as industry stewardship. Optimal adaptation options are those which enable negative impacts to be mitigated and opportunities that arise to be seized. Four key fisheries (Southern Rock Lobster, Abalone, Snapper and Blue Grenadier) in south-eastern Australia were selected as case studies on the basis of the high risk posed to these fisheries by climate-driven change to species distribution and availability in particular. We developed a step-wise approach to evaluating adaption options for the selected fisheries which enabled stakeholders to conduct a “first pass” assessment of options, entailing characterisation and then scoring of options against a range of criteria.  Candidate options could then be further evaluated using existing risk-and-simulation techniques, and against management objectives. After ascertaining actual and expected key climate impacts via a separate study, potential adaptation options for each fishery were firstly described then prioritised using a characterisation matrix which included: the specific climate challenges addressed, the implications of each option on the fishery system as a whole (i.e. the interaction of adaptation options with other management strategies), as well as temporal and spatial scales of implementation processes and benefits. Semi-quantitative evaluation of the final list of options was undertaken by stakeholders scoring the anticipated performance or outcome of an option against a pre-determined set of criteria and related indicators relating to perceived feasibility, risk and benefit.


Dr Emily Ogier is a researcher in Marine Social Science at the Institute of Marine and Antarctic Studies.  With a background in human geography and political economy, she is interested in the human dimension of marine systems, and the way this interaction is governed through both formal institutions and social processes. She manages the Human Dimensions Research Subprogram, which is a national program funded by the Australian Fisheries Research and Development Corporation. She is also part of the professional lobster fishing community in Tasmania through a family business.

Species on the Move

An International Conference Series

The conference brings together scientists and natural resource managers working in the disciplines of global change, biogeography and evolution, and relevant in contexts of natural resource management, biodiversity management and conservation, and theoretical ecology.

Species responses to climate change is a rapidly evolving research field, however, much of our progress is being made in independent research areas: e.g. understanding the process vs responding to the implications, terrestrial vs marine ecosystems, global meta-analyses vs in depth species-specific approaches. This interdisciplinary conference develops connections between these parallel streams, and across temporal and spatial scales.

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