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ClimeFish Report Summary

Project ID: 677039
Funded under: H2020-EU.3.2.

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - ClimeFish (Co-creating a decision support framework to ensure sustainable fish production in Europe under climate change)

Reporting period: 2016-04-01 to 2017-09-30

Summary of the context and overall objectives of the project

The overall goal of ClimeFish is to help ensure that the increase in seafood production comes in areas and for species where there is a potential for sustainable growth, given the expected developments in climate, thus contributing to robust employment and sustainable development of rural and coastal communities. ClimeFish will also contribute to establishing fisheries and aquaculture management plans (MPs) coherent with the precautionary approach, in co-creation with the operators and other stakeholders. This will secure a stable, or in some areas increased, fish production.

Overall objective: ClimeFish will support sustainable fisheries, enable an increase in European aquaculture production, facilitate employment and regional development in the sectors, and develop forecasting and management tools for adapting to CC; all in co-creation with stakeholders.

Specific objectives (SOs) listed below address the call and contribute to the societal challenges

SO1) Investigate the effects of CC on fisheries and aquaculture at European and regional scale, and to collect and harmonize relevant data which will be made available in the H2020 Open Research Data Pilot

SO2) Develop novel forecasting models to simulate and analyse changes in distribution and production in the fisheries and aquaculture sectors

SO3) Identify risks and opportunities based on analysis of market and non-market costs and benefits of affected ecosystem services, and propose potential mitigation strategies

SO4) Develop early warning methodologies for these risks including a traffic light system

SO5) In co-creation with stakeholders, develop case-specific MPs that mitigate risks and utilize opportunities associated with anticipated effects of CC on aquatic production, based on ecosystem and results-based management (RBM) approaches

SO6) In co-creation with stakeholders, develop guidelines, good practice recommendations and a voluntary European standard outlining how to develop this type of MPs in the future

SO7) In co-creation with stakeholders, develop the ClimeFish DSF. This contains the ClimeFish decision support system (DSS) and other decision support resources such as models, datasets, sample runs and guidelines

SO8) Provide training and dissemination for industry, policy makers, scientists and other stakeholders; to ensure active utilization of the developed tools and guidelines beyond the project lifetime in close collaboration with the European Climate-ADAPT Platform

Work performed from the beginning of the project to the end of the period covered by the report and main results achieved so far

Fifteen case studies and the European water overall have been characterized, and perception of main threats and opportunities identified in dialogue with local stakeholders. Predictions of CC effects were made for 14 case studies, spanning marine fisheries, freshwater lake fisheries, freshwater and marine finfish as well as marine shellfish aquaculture throughout European waters. Biological forecasts were obtained for two climate scenarios (RCP4.6 and RCP8.5) and four time intervals (2006-15, 2016-25, 2026-35 and 2046-55) by combining physical climate models and food web or individual based models.
In marine fisheries, CC effects involve both species increase and decline and are often modified by predator-prey interactions. Freshwater fisheries and aquaculture tended to benefit from CC, whereas the CC effects on shellfish aquaculture are uncertain. Marine aquaculture was predicted to benefit from CC for warm-water species; in the case of salmon, warming waters slightly shift the suitability of aquaculture sites to higher latitudes.

A first draft of general guidelines for making adaptive management plans or Climate Adaptation Plans (CAPs) for the three different seafood production sectors, and guidelines for best practice of developing the ClimeFish decision support framework (DSF) have been developed.
These guidelines and the first predictions will be presented to case study specific stakeholders in meetings during spring 2018 facilitated by the stakeholder hub. ClimeFish focuses on the lessons learned and the best practices on how to engage stakeholders, followed by leading international organizations (FAO, FEAP and ICES) and our non-EU partners (Canada, Chile and Vietnam).

We have developed a data management plan, a communication plan and recently a plan for dissemination of knowledge and exploitation to ensure that data are properly saved and made available, results are disseminated and outcomes exploited to ensure best possible impact.
The main durable project outputs related to data, models, guidelines and tools are collected in the ClimeFish DSF and made openly available. An important component of the ClimeFish DSF is the ClimeFish DSS, a software application which enables ecological and economic simulation and 'what-if' analysis based on different climate scenarios in the respective sectors and cases.

• The ClimeFish DSS with accompanying user instructions
• The data collected and collated in the project
• The forecasting models designed to simulate and analyse changes in production in the fisheries and aquaculture sectors
• Sample runs and tests of the models, description of model scope and limitations
• Guidelines for making responsive CAPs
• Guidelines for establishing legal good practice when resources move and diseases occur
• Recommendations for good co-creation practice based on lessons learned for how to utilize expert and stakeholder groups

ClimeFish is developing a European voluntary standard (CWA) for how to make climate-enabled MPs related to seafood production. Finally we contribute to have well informed and engaged stakeholders and happy scientists even if they are outside their comfort zone.

Progress beyond the state of the art and expected potential impact (including the socio-economic impact and the wider societal implications of the project so far)

Most of the empirical studies investigating the impact of CC on seafood production undertaken so far have either focused on a single species or a single region. ClimeFish aims at extending our knowledge of the implications of CC for European seafood production by extending existing analyses and apply novel ones to a number of species in a wide range of areas. The diversity of CSs with different warming rates, physical configurations and fish communities will allow ClimeFish to carry out an exhaustive assessment of the scale and magnitude of the impact of CC on European fisheries and aquaculture production.

While the existing literature mostly highlights the negative consequences of a changing climate on marine fisheries, ClimeFish will explore whether opportunities can arise from it, such as exploiting warm water fish stocks now thriving in previously cold seas, and the potential for farming of species at lower trophic levels. ClimeFish will employ this knowledge to perform forward simulations of seafood production based on the IPCC projections using the latest ecosystem and socio-economic modelling tools available.

The biological forecasting will allow ClimeFish to estimate the likely socio-economic implications of CC for the future fisheries and aquaculture production. More importantly, these forecasts will allow ClimeFish to formulate, test and evaluate innovative management strategies designed to mitigate the loss of productivity caused by CC while fully exploiting potential opportunities. These strategies will be implemented in case specific MPs which will satisfy the requirement of Good Environmental Status as defined by the Marine Strategy Framework Directive, thus ensuring the future productive exploitation of healthy marine ecosystems in a changing climate.

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