Increases in Productivity in Some Places, Decreases in Others
Researchers at the University of British Columbia have looked into how climate change could affect fisheries around the world. There's no way to be certain what will happen, but using the best data currently available, they tried to model how changes in temperatures could affect these productive marine ecosystems. Some fisheries might become more productive, but most of those are near rich countries. It is mostly poor countries in the tropics that will probably see their local food sources reduced.The lead author of the study, William Cheung, said: "Our projections show that climate change may lead to a 30 to 70 per cent increase in catch potential in high-latitude regions and a drop of up to 40 per cent in the tropics. Many tropical island residents rely heavily on the oceans for their daily meals. These new findings suggest there's a good chance this important food source will be greatly diminished due to climate change."
The team, led by UBC Fisheries professor Daniel Pauly, also found that regions with the highest increase in catch potential by 2055 include Norway, Greenland, Alaska and the east coast of Russia. Meanwhile, regions with the biggest loss in catch potential include Indonesia, the United States (excluding Alaska and Hawaii), Chile and China.
Winners Might Be Losers Too
But the list of "winners" should be taken with a grain of salt for now, according to the researchers. These massive changes in ecosystems need to be studied further. It is very possible that these migrations and changes could lead to more problems than anticipated. Predicted winners could end up not winning much at all, while the losers could still lose big.
As if we needed on more reason to take global warming seriously.
Via Science Daily
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