Protecting Marine Ecosystems in Fishery Regulation

Joshua Abbott, D. S. Holland

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

    3 Scopus citations


    This article reviews the policies related to the protection of marine ecosystems from negative impacts associated with prosecution of fisheries - primarily bycatch and habitat damage. As acceptable levels of impacts are typically determined by biological and political considerations rather than economic efficiency in practice, the evaluation of alternative ecosystem-protection approaches is focused on from the perspective of their efficacy in meeting these objectives and their ability to do so at minimum cost. An economic view of ecosystem impacts that characterizes their presence as arising from the choices of profit-maximizing fishermen under biological, technological, and institutional constraints is expounded. It is therefore argued, theoretically and empirically, that consideration of the incentives embodied in regulatory approaches is critical. From this perspective, the pros and cons of input- versus output-based regulatory approaches and the factors that impact their relative effectiveness are discussed, in particular, incentive-based approaches for managing ecosystem impacts. The key role of information and its distribution between regulators and fishermen and the need to exert control over the spatial and temporal nature of effects in selection of the best policy are considered. Finally, the role of policies outside the reach of traditional fisheries management for curbing ecosystem impacts is discussed.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Title of host publicationResources
    PublisherElsevier Inc.
    Number of pages9
    ISBN (Electronic)9780123750679
    ISBN (Print)9780080964522
    StatePublished - Jan 1 2013


    • Bycatch
    • Ecosystem management
    • Habitat
    • Incentives
    • MPAs

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Economics, Econometrics and Finance(all)
    • General Business, Management and Accounting


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