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COMMIT — Result In Brief

Project ID: 502289
Funded under: FP6-POLICIES

Fishing for sustainability

A commendable EU initiative that involves new modelling methodologies and management plans for fisheries is expected to help preserve sustainability of different fish species in the continent's seas.
Fishing for sustainability
Sustainable fishing and effective production of seafood in the EU depends on progressive management of the fisheries sector. The EU-funded project 'Creation of multinatiannual management plans for commitment' (Commit) supported the management of fisheries through multi-annual management plans that consider changing stock dynamics. The plans also factored in commitment to management and role of compliance.

Commit's management approach focused specifically on influencing inputs to reach desired outputs such as sustainability and yield per stock. This called for looking at uncertainty through Bayesian belief networks (BBNs) to improve management of fisheries significantly. Commit conducted three case studies on different fish species using BBNs to devise more robust management approaches. Varieties of fish studied include sole and plaice (North Sea flatfish), as well as Northern hake and Baltic salmon.

the North Sea flatfish case study focused on facilitating fishing by optimising fishermen's behaviour. It incorporated stakeholder feedback to articulate a new bio-economic model to achieve its aims. In parallel, the project's recovery plan for Northern hake considered growth, mortality, cannibalism and relevant assumptions to create multi-annual management plans. The emerging methodology was also applied to the multi-annual management of Baltic salmon.

project researchers successfully used a specific software framework to create viable simulation models that have strong potential for furthering sustainable fishing. It established an interactive website to disseminate information in this regard, supporting important aspects of fishing such as compliance modelling, stakeholder participation and improved management procedures. With Commit's formidable progress, the future of fishing in the EU is expected to be healthier and more sustainable.

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