In California much work is being done at the local and state levels to mitigate the effects of climate change, and develop adaptation strategies. In particular, California recently released for public comment “Safeguarding California: Reducing Climate Risk” – an update to the 2009 California Climate Adaptation Assessment. In it, decision makers specifically highlight the need to improve understanding of climate risks to biodiversity and habitat, among other recommendations.
This report reviews aspects of the latest scientific literature on the potential impacts of climate change on California’s fish and fisheries. It provides a general overview of possible impacts on upwelling and primary ocean productivity, and information on how ocean temperature, stratification, and changes in wind and currents may affect the distribution and range and productivity of fish species of commercial and recreational value.
Led by Ocean Protection Council Science Advisory Team (OPC-SAT) member Dr. Bill Sydeman of the Farallon Institute, this report provides valuable information on the state of the science of the risks posed by climate change to California’s marine ecosystems and fisheries. While not designed as a vulnerability assessment for individual species, this report lays the necessary groundwork for such an investigation in the future.