This report presents the results of EcoAdapt’s efforts to survey adaptation action in marine fisheries management by examining the major climate impacts on marine and coastal fisheries in the United States, assessing related challenges to fisheries management, and presenting examples of actions taken to decrease vulnerability and/or increase resilience. First, we provide a summary of climate change impacts and secondary effects on fisheries, focusing on changes in air and water temperatures, precipitation patterns, storms, ocean circulation, sea level rise, and water chemistry.
While previous research has documented marine fish and invertebrates shifting poleward in response to warming climates, less is known about the response of fisheries to these changes. By examining fisheries in the northeastern United States over the last four decades of warming temperatures, we show that northward shifts in species distributions were matched by corresponding northward shifts in fisheries. The proportion of warm-water species caught in most states also increased through time.
This report has been prepared by EcoAdapt for the MPA Monitoring Enterprise. The MPA Monitoring Enterprise, a program of the California Ocean Science Trust, is tasked with developing and implementing monitoring of California’s emerging statewide MPA network. While climate change is not explicitly incorporated into the goals and objectives of California’s MPAs, future evaluations of MPA performance will occur in the context of a changing climate and associated changing oceanographic environment.
The North American Marine Protected Area Rapid Vulnerability Assessment Tool was created to help marine protected area managers evaluate the implications of climate change for the habitats of their sites.
Tidal Flooding is an educational, online, narrated presentation provided by the NOAA Office for Coastal Management that describes tidal flooding and the risks communities may face with increased tidal flooding from heavy rains, sea level rise, and continued coastal development. The presentation outlines the formation of extreme high tides, potential impacts of extreme high tides, and how flooding will change with sea level rise.
Extreme Water Levels in an online product that allows users to analyze the likelihood that local tides will exceed a given elevation (mean high or low water) at different monthly and yearly time scales. Extreme Water Levels calculates these likelihoods based on over 30 years of monitoring data, and provides viewers with a rough idea of extreme tide heights expected every year, every other year, every 10 years, and every 100 years.
The Coastal Flood Exposure Mapper helps communities understand their risks and vulnerability to coastal flooding. The mapper was first developed following Hurricane Sandy to provide a tool to show areas susceptible to coastal flooding, storm surge, and inundation, and to inform communities and local authorities about the risks their communities face. Users are able to explore maps that show how natural resources, communities, and infrastructure and development will be exposed to coastal flooding hazards.
The Coastal Resilience Index (CRI) is a self-assessment tool, in worksheet form, that evaluates community storm preparedness and recovery potential. Designed for quick and easy use by community leaders, the CRI guides discussion and self-assessment of important coastal assets — including infrastructure and facilities, transportation, community plans, mitigation measures, business plans, and social systems — in relation to self-defined storm scenarios, facilitating identification of areas where community resilience could be bolstered.