11 Apr Climate Change’s Effect on Fishing
It is possible that climate change could cause a tragic ending when it comes to global wild fisheries. Over the years, climate change has forced animals all over the world to adapt to new environments. The warming oceans, causing relocation and frequent adaptation, are constantly threatening fish and other marine life. Minimizing the damages that come with climate change has now come down to our actions when fishing.
Fish have begun to move to cooler areas of the ocean, near the poles, in order to survive. Soon there will be nowhere left for them to relocate, as climate change affects more areas. The size of marine populations has declined by almost half (49%) between 1970 and 2012 according to WWF’s Living Blue Planet Report 2015. Certain fish may even begin to cluster together, directly affecting the way that fish are collected. With these changes, there will also be shifts in the distribution of fish stocks, allowing specific areas to benefit while others to lose out.
Climate change is not only affecting where fish live but also how they are adapting. It is possible that the drastic change in weather will cause fish to shrink in size. According to National Geographic, due to warmer seas the metabolisms of water-breathing creatures have begun to need more oxygen from the ocean. The oxygen in many parts of the seas has begun to reduce in availability already and could continue to do so. Sustainable fishing is one of the actions that can be taken in order to help have a positive impact on this issue.
Sustainable wild fisheries and practices, like those recommended by the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC), are paving the new way for fishing by respecting the ocean and the variety of life there. Fishing activity must be managed carefully so that species and habitats within the ecosystem remain healthy. MSC certified fisheries have created specific requirements when it comes to conserving the marine environment for future generations, which is what sustainable tuna fishing is all about. These practices can help negate some of the damage done to fish populations by climate change.