Impact Of Climate Change On Fisheries And Aquaculture

Project and Seminar Material for Fishery and Aquaculture

Impact Of Climate Change On Fisheries And Aquaculture


Climate change has been reported to have direct and indirect impacts on fisheries and aquaculture globally. Nigeria is a coastal states with growing contribution of inland aquaculture to national development and individual livelihood; thus on the overall well- being of her citizens.

The paper review the different impacts of climate change on the physical, chemical and biological quality of water to sea level rise, it suggested strategies for adaptations and how to cope with the impacts of changing climate on water quality, in other to sustain the industry. The findings will serve as a management tool for government and stakeholders in addressing some of the lingering issues in understanding some of the resultant impacts on fisheries to sustain the growing industry in the face of climate change.

Some of the strategies suggested are adapted not only to manage future decline in fish production but contribute to poverty reduction, wellbeing of the people and improving the socioeconomic potentials of the country, presently in economic crises and conflict, resulting from government policy failures.

Table Of Content

Preliminary Page(s)

  • Title page
  • Certification page
  • Dedication
  • Acknowledgement
  • Abstract
  • Table of content

Chapter One

1.0 Introduction

  • 1.1 Background Of The Study
  • 1.2 Statement Problem
  • 1.3 Research Objective

Chapter Two

2.0 Review Of Related Literature

  • 2.1 Conceptual Review
  • 2.2 Empirical Review

Chapter Three

3.0 Descriptive And Empirical Results

Chapter Four

4.0 Conclusion And Recommendation

  • 4.1 Conclusion
  • 4.2 Recommendation
  • References

Chapter One

1.0 Introduction

1.1 Background of the Study

Nigeria is a maritime country with tremendous aquatic and fisheries resources that make significant contributions to livelihood, food security and the overall economy of the nation. The country’s fresh water and marine fisheries resources are enormous with tremendous opportunities for fish production through capture and cultured fisheries (fig.1).

The country’s freshwater bodies (Table. 1) was estimated about 14 million hectares, comprising of seasonal and perennial rivers, lakes, reservoirs and dams (Table.1). While the coastal waters (creeks, lagoons and estuaries) housing most aquaculture cover about 37, 934km2, with an undisputed marine jurisdiction over the physical, chemical and biological resources exploitation within a distance of 320 km nautical kilometers (853 km2) into the Atlantic Ocean (FAO, 2014).

Most fisheries exploitation in freshwaters and coastal waters are carried out by artisanal (small scale) fishermen, employing simple fishing gear and equipments. This subsector employment, according to FDF (2008) has over 8 million fishermen, with another 18 million people engaged in fish processing, distribution and marketing, thereby accounting for a well over 80% of the total annual domestic production of the country.

While, the industrial fishing sub-sector dominate the Atlantic Ocean, especially as the country’s portion of the Atlantic is not an isolated entity (Ipinjolu et al. 2014) [24]. While several studies have implicated climate change on rapidly changing physical, chemical and biological properties of known water bodies to sea level, with significantly impacts on fisheries; a subsector known to contribute about 4% Nigeria annual domestic fish production, are made up of significant few large-scale investors.

The climatic and geomorphic characteristics of Nigeria has placed the country among vulnerable and one of the most threatened countries globally. Although, these impacts are widely reported as direct and indirect or positive and negative consequences, including in aquaculture; their impacts are becoming more evident. However, the country’s highest contributions to global fisheries estimated in 2014 was from inland aquaculture, in line with the 2008 Central Bank of Nigeria Statistics office (fig. 2) (FAO, 2014), and believed to be most threatened by changing climate.

According to FAO (2008) [16], climate change impact is expected to cut across ecosystems, societies and economics, livelihood and food supplies in West and Central African countries most vulnerable due to their fragile ecological and geological formation (WorldFish Centre, 2007) [37], coupled with their climate characteristics. In climate change scenario, fisheries and aquaculture are particularly vulnerable because aquatic habitats directly absorbed and store part of the solar energy, especially as most fish species are cold blooded, except Pangasius species with ability to thrive in both tropical and temperate environment; a concern for top producing countries like Vietnam and China.

Climate change impact directly on water quality by changing the physio-chemical conditions through temperature increase, and consequently on other important assessment which can increase the risk indices for aquatic lives. Several empirical studies have been conducted to investigate the different impacts of climate change on Nigeria fisheries and aquaculture which includes the work of Idowu et al. (2011) [19] on the Impact of climate change in Nigeria; Ipinjolu et al. (2014) [24], the potential impacts of climate change on fisheries and aquaculture in Nigeria; Anyanwu et al. (2015) [3], climate change, effects and mitigation strategies on aquaculture: a review; Essam and Senebe (2013) [15]; Impacts of climate change on fisheries: implications for food security in Sub- Saharan Africa; Aphunu and Nwabeze (2012), Fish farmers’ perception of climate change impact on fish production in Delta State, Nigeria (Leon and Antonio, 2015).

According to these authors, climate change scenario especially through temperature and carbon dioxide increase will continuously warm the earth with resultant effects on fisheries and aquaculture, and that Nigeria vulnerability is high. Leon and Antonio (2015) asserted that warming has increased thermal stratification, reduction in surface water cold and warm mix thereby preventing upwelling effects of nutrients, and consequently affect primary productivity, the distribution and fecundity of marine fishes.

Surprisingly, it was also observed that changing climate through temperature will temporarily increase dissolved oxygen in water which will deplete afterwards due to increase in biochemical Oxygen demand; a natural phenomenon in water noted to regulate water quality. This have been observed to increase nutrient content of water bodies causing algal bloom, thus eutrophication of waters in Netherlands (Verweij et al., 2010) [35].

Increase in temperature can adversely increase food consumption by fish, especially small sized fishes, and resultantly increase the cost of inland aquaculture. Consequently, increase biological oxygen demand (BOD), deplete available dissolved oxygen (DO) and thus, pollution of water bodies and death in some cases. The quality of a water body is key to the survival of fish life, which is an important consideration for both marine and inland aquaculture assessment.

1.2 Statement Problem

Changes or poor water quality has been reported to result to large scale fish death in ponds or marine ecosystems, especially as fish and shellfishes known to have suitable environmental conditions to thrive in some of these aquatic systems. In Vietnam for example, the 2008 Vedan factory pollution incident and 2016 large scale surface water pollution was reported to cause ecosystem damage and unquantifiable fish kill (Ngoc, 2008 and Vietnam News).

Although aquaculture have been reported to contribute to greenhouse gas emission and thus global warming (a phenomenon associated with temperature increase from normal); the contribution is still at minute level, when compared to other anthropogenic sources. Increase in carbon dioxide will lead to acidification of waters and decalcification of shell fishes and complete change in ocean chemistry occur. The influence of climate change on surface water is very striking and should be studied in-depth to provide improve information in assessing water quality.

Climate change through temperature increase will temporarily increase dissolve oxygen concentration; consequently increase biochemical oxygen demand (BOD), which will deplete the available oxygen causing an anoxia in water bodies. Increases in dissolve oxygen (DO) have been observed to regulate water quality by reducing carbon dioxide concentration in waters (Verweij et al. 2010) [35].

The livelihoods in Nigeria lies between longitudes 2°49′ E – 14°37E and latitudes 4°16N’13° 52N and with two distinctive seasons (dry and wet) suitable for agricultural production, with an average rainfall above 2800mm and high relative humidity of about 80 – 92%.

The aim of this paper is to highlight some of the attendant impacts of changing climates and strategies for adaption to sustain an industry contributing to National and livelihood development in Nigeria.

1.3 Research Objective

The objective of this study was to evaluate impact of climate change on fisheries and aquaculture.

Chapter Four

4.0 Conclusion And Recommendation

4.1 Conclusion

Undoubtedly, Sub-Sahara Africa including Nigeria are looming in the face of climate change. These impacts are more evident in fishery and fisheries, as Nigeria capacity for fish production, so also its contributions comes from inland fisheries. It has become imperative to address these attendant problems of climate change which have worse future consequences. The present study have provide useful analyses and strategies to cope with climate change in Nigeria and Sub- Sahara Africa, if taken into considering it will help the fast growing fisheries industry and save the ever growing population in high demand for protein sources and earn more income tremendously from export. Government at all level, international organizations and stakeholders should be integrated in environment and thus, climate change mitigation.

4.2 Recommendation

In order to assuage the impacts of climate change on aquaculture and fisheries in Nigeria, the under listed adaptation strategies have been recommended, which are in line with development goals and initiatives. The federal, State and Local government should adapt all in- inclusive and people friendly principles in promoting climate change awareness and sustainable development through the following;

  1. Establish community and stakeholders on the impacts of climate change and how to identify one.
  2. Strengthen government institution and empower them to work closely with local people in mitigation the effects of changing climate, especially in the riverine communities.
  3. Government at all levels should enforce laws targeted at reducing anthropogenic pollution of water bodies and activities capable of exacerbating climate change attendant effects, especially from production industries.
  4. Adequate training on modern fishing techniques (including mariculture) and provision of incentives to subsides (Seeds, Fertilizers, Agro-chemicals, improved local breeds of livestock, Outboard Engines, fishing nets, etc) to fish farmers.
  5. The government should provide access roads, foot bridges during flood and other maritime transportation to rural and riverine communities.
  6. Rain-water collection systems should be provided for all stakeholders, including public boreholes outside the flood reaches of the possible flood belts and waterfronts.
  7. Increase support to stakeholders through empowerment, frequent training, equipment provision, credit/loan assistance and training workshop support/provision.
  8. Strengthening of support for service providers at the community level through credit assistance such as transportation systems and farming equipment supply, expecially processing centres.
  9. The federal, state and local governments should engage in participatory community projects’ implementation through the management of policies and regulations relevant for the moderation of agricultural production laws that can assure sustainable livelihoods and as well help mitigate change impacts.
  10. The government should properly regulate and monitor industrial activities, expecially oil and gas using international acceptable standards.
  11. The restive and aggrieved communities should engage government constructively to attract development rather than hostility and destruction of oil facilities, which has further degraded the environment.

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