New centre to study effects of sea warming on cod –

New centre to study effects of sea warming on cod Published:  23 March, 2011

A NEW Nordic Centre of Excellence to study climate change effects on fish stocks and other marine ecosystems and resource economics is to be established in Norway. The project has received funding official funding and it will be led from the University of Oslo.

The centre will be designed to implement a broad international and multidisciplinary research strategy to explore the biological, economic, and societal risks and opportunities of global climate change on fisheries resources in the northern Norway and Arctic region, with a primary focus on the Atlantic cod. It is aimed to  achieve this through a programme of primary research that will train a new generation of Phd students and post doctorates to develop internationally collaborative projects that integrate biology, economics, and policy.

There is growing evidence that cold water species like cod and haddock shoals are moving further north because of warmer seas. Although wealthy from its North Sea oil and gas reserves, deep sea fishing, along with aquaculture, remains very important to Norway and is a major export earner for the country. Norway is also the world’s leading producer and exporter of salmon and rainbow trout.

Carl Folke, research director at the Stockholm Resilience Centre and who has considerable experience in marine research, will be co-leading the new programme together with Nils Chr. Stenseth from the Centre for Ecological and Evolutionary Synthesis at the University of Oslo.

He said: “We are most pleased to receive this grant (from Nordforsk). This is an excellent opportunity to really integrate social and ecological research on fisheries, foodwebs, climate and the Baltic Sea.”

Funding is scheduled to begin this year and will be available for up to five years.