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Rapid assessment of fisheries species sensitivity to climate change

journal contribution
posted on 2023-05-18, 05:59 authored by Gretta PeclGretta Pecl, Timothy WardTimothy Ward, Doubleday, ZA, Clarke, S, Day, J, Dixon, C, Stewart FrusherStewart Frusher, P Gibbs, Hobday, AJ, Hutchinson, N, Sarah JenningsSarah Jennings, Jones, K, Li, X, Spooner, D, Stoklosa, R
Climate change driven alterations in the distribution and abundance of marine species, and the timing of their life history events (phenology), are being reported around the globe. However, we have limited capacity to detect and predict these responses, even for comparatively well studied commercial fishery species. Fisheries provide significant socioeconomic benefits for many coastal communities, and early warning of potential changes to fish stocks will provide managers and other stakeholders with the best opportunity to adapt to these impacts. Rapid assessment methods that can estimate the sensitivity of species to climate change in a wide range of contexts are needed. This study establishes an objective, flexible and cost effective framework for prioritising future ecological research and subsequent investment in adaptation responses in the face of resource constraints. We build on an ecological risk assessment framework to assess relative sensitivities of commercial species to climate change drivers, specifically in relation to their distribution, abundance and phenology, and demonstrate our approach using key species within the fast warming region of south-eastern Australia. Our approach has enabled fisheries managers to understand likely changes to fisheries under a range of climate change scenarios, highlighted critical research gaps and priorities, and assisted marine industries to identify adaptation strategies that maximise positive outcomes.


Publication title

Climatic Change










Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies


Kluwer Academic Publ

Place of publication

Van Godewijckstraat 30, Dordrecht, Netherlands, 3311 Gz

Rights statement

Copyright 2014 Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht

Repository Status

  • Restricted

Socio-economic Objectives

Effects of climate change on Australia (excl. social impacts)

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    University Of Tasmania