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Climate Change Vulnerability of Lobster Fishing Communities in Atlantic Canada, by Blair Greenan and Nancy Shackell, both Research Scientists with Fisheries and Oceans Canada

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Wednesday, December 18, 2019
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12:00 pm - 1:00 pm ET


Blair Greenan, Research Scientist, Fisheries and Oceans Canada
Nancy Shackell, Research Scientist, Fisheries and Oceans Canada

NOAA's National Ocean Service Science Seminar; coordinator is
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Climate change impacts on fisheries will undoubtedly have socio-economic impacts on coastal communities and the seafood market. However, it is a challenge to integrate climate change information in a form that can be used efficiently by adaptation planners, policy makers and fishery managers. In this study, we frame a climate change impact assessment using a geographical perspective based on the management units of the dominant fishery, in this case, American lobster in Nova Scotia, Canada. The information considered here includes economic dependence on the fishery, population size, diversity of the fishery revenue, status of harbour infrastructure, total replacement cost of each harbour, increased relative sea level and flooding, and the vulnerability of offshore lobster to ocean warming and changes in zooplankton composition and anticipatory changes in fishery productivity across management borders. Using two ocean models to provide multi-decadal scale projections of bottom temperature, changes in offshore lobster distribution are projected to have a neutral, or positive impact on the region as a whole. However, when lobster vulnerability is combined with climate change related vulnerabilities of coastal fishing communities, it is evident that adaptation planning is needed for long-term sustainability. This impact assessment provides both a framework and information for further in-depth analyses by climate change adaptation planners and fishery managers.
About the 

Drs. Blair Greenan and Nancy Shackell are research scientists at Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) at the Bedford Institute of Oceanography in Nova Scotia, Canada. In 2012, Nancy and Blair co-managed a large research group to assess the vulnerabilities, opportunities and impacts of climate change throughout the Atlantic Basin. Recently, their research has focused on developing climate change adaptation tools to provide science advice to DFO on issues related to coastal infrastructure and fisheries management.
Blair manages a diverse group of researchers that focus on ocean stressors ranging from marine oil spills to climate change effects such as ocean acidification. He is the Scientific Director for the Argo Canada program which contributes to the International Argo program in advancing global real-time observations of the ocean with autonomous instruments. Blair received his Ph.D. from the Department of Physics at the University of Toronto.
Nancy's research focuses on fisheries ecology in support of Ecosystem Approach to Management. Nancy has published on biodiversity, important habitat of commercial species, marine protected areas, trophic balance, integrated ecological assessments, impacts of climate change, Atlantic halibut spatial ecology, and climate change adaptation. Nancy received a B.Sc. in Biology from McGill University, Montreal and a Ph.D. in Biology from Dalhousie University, Halifax.
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