Adapting fisheries to climate change: community-based and scientific-oriented fisheries management of Saroma Lake, Hokkaido

Iwasaki, S. | Community Practices for Disaster Risk Reduction in Japan | 2014 | Peer Reviewed | Book (chapter) |


This chapter presents a case study of Saroma Lake fisheries by highlighting adaptive responses to risk reduction coupled with climate change. Saroma Lake is the southernmost area of seasonal sea ice distribution in the northern hemisphere. Changes in temperature are likely to impact negatively on the ice-covered ecosystem and fishing production in the lake where the fishers need to adapt to the impacts. The case study reveals that innovative efforts performed by the fishers and researchers have been made by applying community-based and scientific-oriented fisheries management. The fishers united together and built an integrated body, leading them to achieve cooperative fishery governance system. The system not only ensures a holistic approach to respond to changes in the lake ecosystem, but also reduces a range of risks through active use of scientific knowledge by employing full-time researchers in their structure as well as strengthening interactions between fishers and outside researchers. The employed researchers work on problems of interest to the fishers and search workable the solutions. Permanent or long-term residency can allow them to interpret concerns of the fishers and act in a leading role in the coordination of adaptive fisheries development. Based on the Saroma Lake experience, this chapter will provide potential initiatives to help develop a pathway for linking fisheries management to risk reduction.