Fisheries Society of the British Isles

The FSBI has Joined a Worldwide Rallying Call for Urgent Action on Human-Caused Climate Change

A worldwide statement from 110 societies calls upon urgent action on climate change 

View the Full Satement Here >>


The World Climate Statement

Below is a condensed version of the statement from above, drafted by the AFS, that outlines the challenges presented by climate change, the science based evidence for human-caused climate change and the needed responses. 


The Challenges

1.Increased atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases from fossil fuels and land use changes are driving current climate change.

2. Impacts already occurring range from increased frequency, intensification, and severity of; meteorlogical events, hydrological disasters; ocean acidification and deoxygenation. These changes are currently causing an unprecedented ecological backlash on our environment at a global scale.


These challenges are precursors of more damage to fisheries, biodiversity, and human society at large.
Delaying action to stop underlying causes of climate change will have economic, environmental, and societal consequences.


Changes, Reductions and Loss;  Marine Environments

In the marine environment shifts in species composition, behaviour, abundance, and biomass production is an increasing trend. For instance lobster, cod, mackerel, coral reef fishes and other species important to fisheries are moving poleward to deeper waters or declining.

In addition coastal ecosystems are being transformed, degraded, or lost, either largely or in part due to carbon emissions causing global ocean acidification. Not only does the affect primary production, from coral reefs to kelp forests, but is also tied to the survival of organisms especially shellfish.

Furthermore climate change is interacting with other stressors such as excess nutrient input, overharvesting, and novel species interactions to further suppress marine ecosystems.

Freshwater Environments

Freshwater ecosystems cover less than 1% of the planet’s surface but support one-third of vertebrates, 10% of all species and is more vulnerable to terrestrial changes with less capability to adapt to the impacts of climate change.

Abiotic changes can alter species abundance, predator–prey dynamics, expansion of invasive species, growth, recruitment of species, and novel species interactions. Leading to declines in the number and diversity of freshwater aquatic organisms.

This will impact recreational and commercial fish harvest because of the increased frequency and severity of droughts and floods, damaging the quality of freshwater.

The prominent influence of climate change on these hydrological and meteorological events combined with lower adaptation capability often results in; poor recruitment, inability to access habitats, increased algal blooms from runoff, reducing water quality and re-emergence of diseases. More worryingly, these diverse and small-scale changes combine to create multiple, cumulatively stressful challenges to aquatic species.


Climate Change Puts Food Security, Public Health and Ecosystem Services at Risk


All life forms need clean and sufficient water.


According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, fish accounts for 17% of animal protein consumed globally. Furthermore, fishing and aquaculture directly employ almost 60 million people, and global trade in fish products has reached US$152 billion per year, with 54% originating in developing countries.

Furthermore, the warming of waters elevates bioaccumulation of heavy metals increasing the prevalence of waterborne pathogens affecting both human and animal health.

Overall fisheries catch is projected to decline related to increasing declines in water quality and aquatic science shows need for immediate climate action primary production as a result of climate change, with corresponding effects on food security.

It will also impact many businesses that are dependent on local ecosystems for; sustainable diving, snorkelling, angling, marine mammal and bird watching, and other recreational activities.

Climate change impacts on aquatic ecosystems are affecting incomes, food security, key cultural dimensions, and livelihoods of resource-dependent communities.Click To Tweet

All of Society Must Take Rapid Action to Halt Human-Caused Climate Change

Rapid action to curb release of greenhouse gas emissions and to remove and store CO2 from the atmosphere is needed to ensure the prevention of calamitous consequences of human-caused climate change.

Global and national targets are necessary to protect and restore carbon dense ecosystems and reduce the impacts of climate change.

Governments, industry, academia, and sectors of society must prioritize actions in a concerted way to halt human-caused climate change.

A rapid transition towards green energy sources, accomplished by all governments by immediately acting on the advice of specialists.

To better understand other environmental stressors that act synergistically with climate change we must provide resources for mapping and research. This will arm natural resources agencies with the tools to mitigate these impacts and plan for changes in aquatic ecosystems.

Movement to curtail human-caused climate change can result in advanced, novel technologies; strong economies; healthier aquatic ecosystems; greater food security; and human well-being.



Nominations for the 2020 International Fisheries Science Prize

The International Fisheries Section of the American Fisheries Society is requesting nominations for the International Fisheries Science Prize (IFSP). The IFSP honors an individual for his or her contribution to global fisheries science and/or conservation and is presented once every four years at the congress of the World Council of Fisheries Societies. The Prize will consist of a commemorative medal, a plaque, and $5000 USD. This year’s Congress meets during 11-15 October 2020 in Adelaide, Australia.

Nominations for this Prize have no restrictions, and are encouraged from all countries. They must be made by individuals who belong to member societies of the World Council of Fisheries Societies (WCFS). All nominations shall be new or renewed at the beginning of the process. The Prize recipient will be selected by early autumn 2019, based on nominations submitted to the International Fisheries Science Prize Committee and received by midnight, Pacific Standard Time, 31 May 2019.

The Prize Committee that will present the candidate selected to the Executive Committee of the International Fisheries Section is composed of representatives appointed from member societies of the WCFS that contribute to the Prize, and past recipients. All nominations are kept confidential by the Committee, both before and after the prize is awarded.
There is no nomination form. Nominations require: 1) a cover letter of no more than two pages describing the outstanding contributions the individual has made to global fisheries science and/or conservation; 2) letters from at least 5 but not more than 10 references in support of the nomination; and 3) a current curriculum vitae. Nominations and reference letters must be submitted in English (translations acceptable).

Criteria for selection will include the breadth, significance, and duration of the nominee’s achievements, especially those of a global perspective and scope. Nominations and reference letters should address the candidate’s contributions at the local, regional, and international level to the understanding of fisheries science and/or conservation, education and mentorship of other scientists, and engagement with the public and policy issues. Although candidates are not expected to excel in all areas, the breadth and depth of their work, especially at the international level, and important contributions that have transformed their fields are key points considered by the committee.

Please submit nominations electronically to:
Dr. Kurt Fausch, 2020 Chairperson, International Fisheries Science Prize Committee

Symposia 2018: Call for Abstracts

We welcome contributions for oral or poster presentations on the topic of  “The Sustainable Use and Exploitation of Fishes”. Please take account of the symposium sub-themes when submitting your abstract. Potential contributors should submit abstracts for oral, poster presentation or 3 minute speed-talk by 1st March 2018following the template shown below. The scientific steering committee will review all abstracts for relevance to the symposium and scientific merit before compiling the programme.

Continue reading “Symposia 2018: Call for Abstracts”