Scenario Analysis for Arctic Marine Resource Policy
Future changes in Arctic marine ecosystems will depend as much on global climate change as on our ability to regulate and manage the exploitation pressure at sustainable levels. There is a lack of integrated, cross-sectoral ecosystem-based analysis of the Arctic marine management. The analysis would ideally include both the choices for implementing regulatory tools and how they will affect the many ecosystem-dependent values derived from them. The ability to maximize these values depends critically on the ways in which the dynamic bio-economic properties of the resources are impacted by the human behavior induced by the regulations (or lack thereof).
In this paper it is speculated about likely changes in the future Arctic fisheries based on a scenario building approach. The underlying changes to ecosystems are the climate changes which is also one of the drivers and the likely impacts in the Arctic. Other drivers can be identified but by selecting two main drivers it is possible to map four scenarios to be further analyzed. The drivers are the sectoral development of important marine sectors (fishing, shipping, mining etc.) and governance structure development. The development in each of these driving force’s dimensions is uncertain and central in the analysis are risk and uncertainty. The results indicate that the future climate changes might involve relatively large changes in the ecosystem and hence fish stocks, but also that the economic outcome of fisheries depends critically upon our ability to adjust the regulatory regime to capture the values of the ecosystem services.
KeywordsScenario analysis Arctic Fisheries Marine ecosystems Uncertainty
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