"We found that if you have the key spatial (location) information on fish, you can put the Marine Protected Areas in the right places, thus increasing conservation and making the fisheries more profitable," said Christopher Costello, economist and professor with UC Santa Barbara's Bren School of Environmental Science & Management.
Information on fish, from spawning habits to oceanographic models that show currents, gives the experts the data needed for both conservation and increased fishing, according to Costello, who published an article on the topic this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
"You can have conservation and increased fisheries at the same time," he said. "That will be surprising to a lot of people. We tend to think that it's either the economy or the environment and that you can't have both. This is a case where you can have both, but you need that spatial information in order to achieve it."
Costello has served on two recent Science Advisory Teams for the development of California's Marine Protected Areas (MPAs), and is now on a third team, for the design of MPAs in Northern California. The state is in the process of developing MPAs from Point Conception south to the Mexican border. Northern MPAs will be next.
He explained that he and his team of co-authors studied the location of fish by looking at what ecologists call "sources" and "sinks." In source areas, the ocean is very productive and lots of fish spawn there. Larvae are produced and they are swept over to the sink and never leave.
"What you'd really like to do is close the source to fishing and only fish in the sink," said Costello. "It turns out you get a much higher economic value and much better conservation when you do that. But if you don't know where the sources and sinks are, you can't do that, so that is where the information comes in."
He explained that in Southern California the experts have that information and are using it to set up the new MPAs. "However, in many parts of the world, we don't yet have the information," said Costello. "Until this article came out, there was a vague idea that yes, we want better information –– but it wasn't clear why or how we would use it."
The article asserts, "spatial information has the potential to change management approaches."
Co-authors on the paper are: Andrew Rassweiler, postdoctoral fellow with UCSB's Marine Science Institute; David Siegel, professor with UCSB's Institute for Computational Earth System Science; Giulio De Leo, with the Universita degli Studi di Parma, Parma, Italy; Fiorenza Micheli, with the Hopkins Marine Station, Pacific Grove, Calif.; and, Andrew Rosenberg, with the Institute for the Study of Earth, Oceans and Space Ocean Processes and Analysis Laboratory, University of New Hampshire.
Gail Gallessich | EurekAlert!
Global threat to primates concerns us all
19.01.2017 | Deutsches Primatenzentrum GmbH - Leibniz-Institut für Primatenforschung
Reducing household waste with less energy
18.01.2017 | FIZ Karlsruhe – Leibniz-Institut für Informationsinfrastruktur GmbH
A Swedish-German team of researchers has cleared up a key process for the artificial production of silk. With the help of the intense X-rays from DESY's...
For the first time ever, a cloud of ultra-cold atoms has been successfully created in space on board of a sounding rocket. The MAIUS mission demonstrates that quantum optical sensors can be operated even in harsh environments like space – a prerequi-site for finding answers to the most challenging questions of fundamental physics and an important innovation driver for everyday applications.
According to Albert Einstein's Equivalence Principle, all bodies are accelerated at the same rate by the Earth's gravity, regardless of their properties. This...
An important step towards a completely new experimental access to quantum physics has been made at University of Konstanz. The team of scientists headed by...
Yersiniae cause severe intestinal infections. Studies using Yersinia pseudotuberculosis as a model organism aim to elucidate the infection mechanisms of these...
Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.
While superconductivity and magnetism are generally believed to be mutually exclusive, surprisingly, in this new material, superconducting correlations...
19.01.2017 | Event News
10.01.2017 | Event News
09.01.2017 | Event News
24.01.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
24.01.2017 | Life Sciences
24.01.2017 | Health and Medicine