LogoDiscardLess Strategies for the gradual elimination of discards in European fisheries

Final fishery scale models and results of scenarios (baseline, alternative management scenarios and DMS scenarios)

This deliverable presents the results of the bio-economic modelling assessments carried out under tasks 2.3 and 2.4.

Task 2.3 covered the choice and initial parametrisation of relevant bio-economic models for the included case studies, and formulation of scenarios to be analysed. Models were chosen on the basis that they were already operational (i.e. had been used in other applications previously to Discardless) and as such thoroughly tested and documented in peer-reviewed journals, to secure a high scientific standard of the models and the expected assessment results. The selected scenarios firstly included, for all considered case studies, two benchmark scenarios; (i) ‘Business as usual‘, i.e. how the economic outcome of the fishery would evolve if the Landing Obligation (LO) was not implemented, and (ii) ‘Full implementation‘, i.e. what the predicted economic consequences for the fishery will be given a full implementation of the LO with no exemptions or mitigation measures implemented. Secondly a number of relevant scenarios were defined for each case study based on either expectations on or direct knowledge about how the LO, and possible exemptions and mitigation strategies will be implemented in the specific case study. And finally, each case study has assessed and applied outputs from Work Packages (WPs) 3-7, to the extend possible given the bio-economic model in use.

Task 2.4 has firstly throughout the project updated the parametrisation of the chosen bio-economic models given the newest knowledge about the fisheries in question. Secondly task 2.4 has covered the running of the models, given the scenarios identified in task 2.3, and documentation of the resulting outputs.

The following case studies have been analysed (parenthesis displaying the bio-economic model used):

  • The Danish North Sea Demersal fishery (Fishrent)
  • The UK mixed demersal fisheries in the North Sea, West of Scotland and Area 7 (SEAFISH model)
  • The French mixed demersal fishery in the Eastern English Channel (ISIS-Fish)
  • The Spanish mixed demersal fishery in the Bay of Biscay (FLBeia)
  • The Icelandic mixed demersal fishery (Model for various use of unwanted catches)
  • The Spanish demersal fishery in the Western Mediterranean (MEFISTO)
  • The Greek demersal and small-scale fishery in the Thermaikos gulf (MEFISTO)

The outcomes of the simulations are mixed and indicate that the economic effects of the LO for affected fishing fleets depends on both the fishery in question, on the management system on which the LO is superimposed, and on applied exemptions and mitigation strategies. A full implementation of the LO with no quota-uplifts and no exemptions or mitigation strategies applied will in the long run lead to on the average (average over all fleet segments considered in a given case study) reduced or at best similar economic outcomes, compared to the situation with no LO, for the considered fisheries. Application of mitigation strategies and exemptions improves this result for most considered cases, but has in few cases been predicted to make the economic situation worse given redistributional effects, i.e. that the applied mitigation strategy or exemption will have further consequences for the stocks and other fleets, and thus indirectly make the economic situation worse for the considered fleet. When individual fleet segments are considered the picture becomes even more complex as it is in most case studies predicted that some fleet segments will profit while others will loose out given the LO, both without and with added exemptions and/or mitigation strategies.

Thus, in all it is concluded that the economic effects of the LO for affected fisheries are, according to model predictions, very varied, going from losses to actual gains. And that the effects to a high degree depends on (i) the management system on which the LO is superimposed, and (ii) on which and how exemptions and mitigation strategies are implemented.

Finally, it must be emphasized that the work performed in tasks 2.3 and 2.4 has built up a valuable model library that can be used for ongoing assessments of the economic outcomes of introducing exemptions and mitigation strategies in relation to the LO in the case studies covered. Understanding the consequences of various approaches to the implementation of the LO, and possible mitigation strategies, on economic performance of affected fishing fleets (using these models) is of broad interest for fishers, policy makers and stakeholders, as well as for anybody interested in sustainable fisheries and life in the oceans.

The Deliverable report consists of two sections. Section 1 presents a synthesis of the work performed in the seven case studies, and as such gives a short introduction to each case study, to the applied models, to the scenarios analysed and a final synthesis and discussion of the results. Section 2 includes individual case study chapters, that present in-depth information about the case study, the applied model, the reasoning behind the chosen scenarios, discussion on interaction with WP3-7, and detailed outline and discussion of the assessment results.

Ayoe Hoff, Hans Frost