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close this bookEnvironmental Handbook Volume II: Agriculture, Mining/Energy, Trade/Industry (GTZ, 1995, 736 p.)
close this folderAgriculture
close this folder32. Fisheries and aquaculture
View the document1. Scope
View the document2. Environmental impacts and protective measures
View the document3. Notes on the analysis and evaluation of environmental impacts
View the document4. Interaction with other sectors
View the document5. Summary assessment of environmental relevance
View the document6. References

3. Notes on the analysis and evaluation of environmental impacts

The environmental aspects of fisheries and aquaculture fall into five categories:

- impacts on the natural environment which have adverse effects on aquatic organisms but which do not stem from either fisheries or aquaculture (pollution of water through disposal of wastes from industry, agriculture and households or caused by nutrients, pesticides and residues being washed out of soil on land; water-resources management measures); such impacts may affect both fisheries and aquaculture.
- influences on the existence and renewal of fish resources resulting from their use (such influences relate only to natural stocks and not to those maintained and controlled by man, i.e. aquaculture is affected only where it is dependent on young organisms from natural stocks).
- environmental impacts caused by fisheries and aquaculture (disturbance of ecological equilibrium, impairment of water quality etc.).
- influences on use of resources (and thus on the resources themselves) caused by changes in the social and socio-economic situation of producers and consumers (e.g. as a result of population growth).
- effects of fishery and aquaculture activities on the social and socio-economic situation of producers and consumers (e.g. in the event of local overproduction without sufficient access to more distant markets).

Computer-aided simulations of both the ecological and economic situation, using a standard model, can help to ensure that natural fish resources are optimally utilised in a manner which preserves their capacity for renewal. Such models are essential for developing a reliable long-term utilisation strategy which takes into account the economic interests of both the fishermen and the country concerned without jeopardising in the long run the natural resources on which fishing depends.

There as yet exist no summarising overviews or evaluations of the serious impacts which various modern techniques can have on resources (use of explosives and pesticides, bottom trawling, use of drift nets etc.).

Considerable efforts are currently being devoted to studying and evaluating the environmental impacts of aquaculture activities. In September 1990 the International Centre for Living Aquatic Resources Management (ICLARM) held a symposium on environment and aquaculture (results to be published in 1992).