You are here: Home / Database / Publication and reports / Climate change and European fisheries: observed changes and future prospects
Original page

Publications and Reports

Climate change and European fisheries: observed changes and future prospects (2012)


Recent reviews for the North Atlantic provide strong circumstantial evidence to suggest that changes in ocean climate will have far-reaching impacts on the dynamics of fish populations and consequently on future prospects for fisheries and aquaculture in Europe. However, knowledge of the underlying mechanisms is rather limited. First, there is uncertainty about the future development of the ocean climate itself, as various aspects will be influenced such as circulation patterns, air and sea surface temperatures, frequency and intensity of storms, precipitation patterns, pH and river run off. Second, fish and shellfish typically have complex life cycles comprising several life history stages, differing in their sensitivity to climate effects.
The knowledge-base with regard to understanding interactions between fisheries and climate is growing, but there remain many challenges, especially with regard to predicting future socio-economic consequences. This position paper is not intended to be an exhaustive scientific review on the effect of climate change on fisheries, rather it aims to highlight some of the key issues and knowledge gaps, that fisheries research institutes and the European Commission should aim to address in the near future.

Reference information



future, knowledge gaps, popluation dynamics, uncertaintly

Climate impacts

Extreme Temperatures, Storms


Observations and Scenarios, Sector Policies


Marine and Fisheries

Geographic characterisation


Document Actions