From shared socio-economic pathways (SSPs) to oceanic system pathways (OSPs): building policy-relevant scenarios for global oceanic ecosystems and fisheries.

There is an urgent need for developing policy-relevant future scenarios of biodiversity and ecosystem services. This paper is a milestone toward this aim focusing on open ocean fisheries. We develop five contrasting Oceanic System Pathways (OSPs), based on the existing five archetypal worlds of Shared Socioeconomic Pathways (SSPs) developed for climate change research (e.g., Nakicenovic et al., 2014 and Riahi et al., 2016). First, we specify the boundaries of the oceanic social-ecological system under focus. Second, the two major driving forces of oceanic social-ecological systems are identified in each of three domains, viz., economy, management and governance. For each OSP (OSP1 “sustainability first”, OSP2 “conventional trends”, OSP3 “dislocation”, OSP4 “global elite and inequality”, OSP5 “high tech and market”), a storyline is outlined describing the evolution of the driving forces with the corresponding SSP. Finally, we compare the different pathways of oceanic social-ecological systems by projecting them in the two-dimensional spaces defined by the driving forces, in each of the economy, management and governance domains. We expect that the OSPs will serve as a common basis for future model-based scenario studies in the context of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and the Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES).

News Brief: Canada-US Bilateral Agreement on Arctic Conservation

On March 10, 2016 Canada and the US released a major bilateral announcement on the Arctic to coincide with Prime Minister Trudeau’s visit to Washington. The announcement includes an initiative to re-examine new conservation goals for the Arctic and a commitment to engage all Arctic nations in the development of a pan-Arctic marine protection area […]

New Research: Global Fisheries Subsidies: An Updated Estimate

OceanCanada Research Director Rashid Sumaila and his collaborators from the UBC Global Fisheries Cluster (Sea Around Us and NEREUS) have published an updated estimate of global fisheries subsidies in Marine Policy, the researchers found that the global fishing industry is being supported by $35 billion yearly in government subsidies of which upwards of $20 billion […]

New Research: Economic Viability and Small-Scale Fisheries — A Review

UBC Fisheries Economic Research Unit Doctoral student Anna Schuhbauer and OceanCanada Research Director Rashid Sumaila have published a paper in Ecological Economics. The authors report that globally, over 90% of all fishing vessels and about 22 million fishers are considered small-scale. Yet, small-scale fisheries are often understudied, economically and politically marginalized, and therefore vulnerable to […]

New Research: Climate change could cut First Nations fisheries’ catch in half

Media Release | January 13, 2016 First Nations fisheries’ catch could decline by nearly 50 per cent by 2050, according to a new study examining the threat of climate change to the food and economic security of indigenous communities along coastal British Columbia, Canada. “Climate change is likely to lead to declines in herring and […]

New Research: Dr. Dana Miller and Dr. Rashid Sumaila Release Working Paper on Economic Impacts of the English Bay Oil Spill

Dr. Dana Miller, postdoctoral researcher at the University of British Columbia, and OceanCanada Director Dr. Rashid Sumaila have released a working paper examining the impact of the recent oil spill in Vancouver’s English Bay. The paper presents an estimation of the economic impacts of this oil spill on Metro Vancouver’s marine-related economic activities, including commercial […]