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MARINFORSK-Marine ressurser og miljø

Biological and Economic STrategies for sustainable Ecosystem-services and ManagemenT (BESTEMT)

Alternative title: Biologiske og økonomiske strategier for bærekraftig økosystemforvaltning.

Awarded: NOK 12.0 mill.

The project aims at evaluating environmental and distributional effects of various political instruments for fisheries management, such as quotas or taxes among other. Emission quotas and emission fees will also be among the instruments we analyze. Thereby we aim at filling knowledge gaps by including and combining environmental, ecological, biological, economic and social information into our assessment. This includes a variety of things such as fleet composition, interaction between fish species (predator vs. prey, etc.) and interaction between humans (between different types of fishers, between buyers and sellers in the marketplace, etc.). For this aim we plan to use models that combine biology and economics, so-called bioeconomic models. The basic models already exist but will be developed further for the purposes in this project. One of the existing models was developed for the Ministry of Fisheries in 2005. The original purpose of this model was to find optimal size and structure of the Norwegian fishing fleet together with the optimal allocation of fish quotas between different vessel groups. In the present project, we plan to introduce a number of new features. These features include taking into account the dynamics of the fish stocks and analysis of various financial instruments (fees and taxes) in addition to just harvest quotas. For example, implementing emission taxes for the fishing sector will have positive environmental effects in addition to collecting tax revenue. This is a win-win situation. Another interesting aspect of financial instruments such as taxes, is to apply them as tools for structuring the fleet. Taxes may reduce overcapacity, improve the fleet composition and at the same time contribute to collect tax revenue. As far as we know, this way of using financial instruments has received little or no attention earlier, and a thorough analysis of this will be an important novel contribution. The project is divided in five work packages.

The project aims at applying an ecosystem model to evaluate the environmental and distributional effects of various management instruments such as total and individual quotas and vessel specific taxes among other tools. Emission quotas and emission fees will be among the instruments we analyze. Thereby we address existing research gaps by integrating environmental and ecosystem information into our assessment of the tools. This includes fleet heterogeneity, multi-species management, trophic interactions, ecological indicators, and fisher behavior together with markets interactions. The model we plan to use, RESRENT2, is based on the existing RESRENT developed for the Ministry of Fisheries in 2005. The original purpose of this model was to find optimal size and structure of the Norwegian fishing fleet together with the optimal allocation of fish quotas over different vessel groups. In this project, we plan to include a number of new features, and thereby design RESRENT 2. The most comprehensive new features are population dynamics for the species included in the model and financial instruments in addition to harvest quotas. In addition to direct taxation of the resource rent, there are tax instruments that may achieve double dividend. For example, implementing emission taxes for the fishing sector will have positive environmental effects in addition to collecting at least part of the rent. Another interesting aspect of financial instruments such as taxes, is to apply them as tools for structuring the fleet. Such taxes may reduce overcapacity, improve the fleet composition and at the same time contribute to rent capture. As far as we know, this way of using financial instruments has received little or no attention in the literature, and a thorough analysis of this will be an important novel contribution to the literature. The project is divided in five work packages.

Publications from Cristin

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Funding scheme:

MARINFORSK-Marine ressurser og miljø