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‘To fish or not to fish?’: fishing communities of Arctic Yakutia in the face of environmental change and political transformations


Ksenofontov, Stanislav M; Backhaus, Norman; Schaepman-Strub, Gabriela (2017). ‘To fish or not to fish?’: fishing communities of Arctic Yakutia in the face of environmental change and political transformations. Polar Record, 53(03):289-303.

Abstract

This paper assesses the vulnerability of Arctic fishing communities. We hypothesise that climate change related trends, such as increasing temperature and altered seasonality, and shocks, such as the breakdown of the Soviet Union or new fishing regulations, increase vulnerability of local Arctic peoples and compromise the sustainability of their livelihoods. Research shows that over recent decades local people have observed environmental changes and a significant decrease in the number of fish caught. Fishing regulations introduced after the collapse of the Soviet Union burdened fishers with quotas and temporal limitations that have hindered their fishing activities. While the adaptability of traditional fishing techniques to seasonally changing conditions might indicate the potential to adapt to future conditions under climate change, fishing regulations appear to limit this potential to adapt.

Abstract

This paper assesses the vulnerability of Arctic fishing communities. We hypothesise that climate change related trends, such as increasing temperature and altered seasonality, and shocks, such as the breakdown of the Soviet Union or new fishing regulations, increase vulnerability of local Arctic peoples and compromise the sustainability of their livelihoods. Research shows that over recent decades local people have observed environmental changes and a significant decrease in the number of fish caught. Fishing regulations introduced after the collapse of the Soviet Union burdened fishers with quotas and temporal limitations that have hindered their fishing activities. While the adaptability of traditional fishing techniques to seasonally changing conditions might indicate the potential to adapt to future conditions under climate change, fishing regulations appear to limit this potential to adapt.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, not refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:07 Faculty of Science > Institute of Geography
Dewey Decimal Classification:910 Geography & travel
Language:English
Date:2017
Deposited On:12 Jul 2017 08:43
Last Modified:16 Jul 2017 05:53
Publisher:Cambridge University Press
ISSN:0032-2474
Additional Information:Copyright: Cambridge University Press
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1017/S0032247417000134

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