Inderscience Publishers

Alternative futures for Southern Bluefin Tuna

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This paper examines the outcomes of alternative management scenarios for the Southern Bluefin Tuna (SBT) fishery over the next 30 years. Two criteria are used to characterise outcomes: economic efficiency as measured by the present value of net benefits generated and conservation as measured by the predicted size of the spawning stock biomass in 20 years' time (SSB20). A bioeconomic model, incorporating the results of recent stock assessment analysis, is used to assess the effects of alternative management scenarios representing varying degrees of cooperation amongst the eight countries currently harvesting SBT. The results of the model are compared to the results of an earlier model based on a more favourable stock assessment. The results of the current model cast doubt on the prospects of achieving the SSB20 target and suggest that significant cuts to current catch rates are required on both economic and conservation grounds.

Keywords: Convention for the Conservation of Southern Bluefin Tuna, CCSBT, bioeconomics modelling, catch quotas, fisheries management, fish stocks, economic efficiency

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