Aquaculture is breeding, raising and harvesting fish, shellfish and aquatic plants (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration)With the continued unsustainable harvests from capture fisheries, the sector is seen as the only solution to meeting the rising demand for aquatic products globally (Askary Sary et al., 2012). According to FAO (2020), aquaculture’s contribution to global fish production has continued to rise, reaching 82.1 million tons (46%) out of the estimated 179 million tons of global production. Furthermore, the share of aquaculture production out of the global fish production is expected to grow from the current 46 to 53% in 2030 (FAO, 2020). However, the most urgent concern is whether the sector is growing sustainably and fast enough to meet the future projected demand exacerbated by a rapidly growing human population and a changing climate. Climate change is now considered a risk to global food production and a major threat to the quality and quantity of production (Beach and Viator, 2008). Food security, particularly access to dietary protein, is increasingly being threatened by the predicted effects of climate change (Kandu, 2017). With the increase in the global population , demand for aquaculture is high and estimated to reach 62% of the total global production by 2030 (Panoroma, 2018).The volume of fish production globally amounted to 184.6 million metric tons in 2022, up from 178.1 million metric tons in 2021. (Statista , 2022). Climate is long term weather pattern in a region. Climate is the state of components of the climate system. India has the climate of tropical monsoon with some exceptions , we say so because India is located in the tropical region and the rains are bought by the monsoon winds (Fleming et al., 2008) Climate change refers to long-term shifts in temperatures and weather patterns. In common usage, climate change describes global warming—the ongoing increase in global average temperature—and its effects on Earth’s climate system(Chiaramonte et al.,2016). Climate change refers to variations that occur in the statistical distribution of weather over extended periods, typically ranging from decades to millions of years (Yazdi and Shakouri, 2010; IPCC, 2014). These variations may occur in the average weather or simply in the distribution of weather events around an average, and may be limited to a particular region, or occurring across the whole globe (Yazdi and Shakouri, 2010). Humans have been recognized as the major contributor to climate change through the use of fossil fuels (coal, oil, and gas) for energy supplies (Doubleday et al., 2013; IPCC, 2019) as well as deforestation and forest degradation (Khaine and Woo, 2015) that emit greenhouse gases (GHGs) into the atmosphere. The increased accumulation of GHGs including Carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4), nitrous oxides (N2O), and fluorinated gases in the atmosphere over the years has been linked to these human activities. Already, climate change effects have been reported on various key economic sectors and services globally (Troell et al., 2017; IPCC, 2018; Cook and Zolnikov, 2019; FAO, 2020). In aquaculture, the majority of recent literature indicate that some changes in climate, such as rising temperatures, changing precipitation patterns, and increased frequency of some extreme events are now evident on water resources, while others are still emerging (Fleming et al., 2014). Recently, climate change effects on aquaculture sustainability have gained considerable interest owing to the sector’s significant contribution to global food security, nutrition, and livelihoods (FAO, 2020).
The Effects Of Climate Change On Aquaculture: Effects of climate change on aquaculture are expected to be both direct and indirect. Direct effects influence the physiology of the fish and indirect ones lead to alteration of primary and secondary productivity and the structure of ecosystem (Handisyde et al., 2006). Agriculture , forestry and other land uses contribute about 13% CO2, 44% CH4, and 82% N2O emissions from anthropogenic activities accounting for 23% of net anthropogenic emissions of green house gases (GHGs)(IPCC,2009).There are four major green house gases which are: carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide and water vapour.Their main work is to absorb most of the infra red rays entering the earth through the atmosphere from the sun thus increase the earth temperature. Had they not been there the temperature would have dropped to -18 degree Celsius .Any change in the normal percentage of the green house gases leads to global warming(IPCC, 2018). GHG is measured by Carbon dioxide equivalent(CO2e). Its normal range is 300-400ppm but in 2022 it has reacged to 421 ppm which is an alarming situation (NOAA, 2022). Numerous reports have emerged showing that climate change effects on aquaculture may vary depending on geographical areas, economy, climatic zones, production systems, and cultured specie (Merino et al., 2012).Global warming potential (GWP) of human generated green house gases is a measure of how much heat each gas traps in the atmosphere relative to carbon dioxide. It was seen that the florinated gases have the highest green house potential (IPCC,2021). Furthermore, it is important to note that climate change effects will not only affect aquaculture production systems, but also the entire value chain. (Fleming et al., 2014) The predicted elements of a changing climate that threatens production and sustainability of the aquaculture sector are: Rising temperature, Ocean acidification, Diseases, Harmful algal blooms, Changes in rainfall/precipitation patterns, Sea-level rise.
Rising Temperature: Temperature plays a critical role in the growth and development of aquatic animals. (Ngoan, 2018). Fish, being poikilothermic, may particularly be sensitive to temperature variations resulting from climate change. (Sae-Lim et al., 2017). Therefore, prolonged temperature stress may affect aquaculture productivity through various ways centered on lowered output.
Ocean Acidification: Ocean acidification occurs due to a decline in pH levels of ocean water for an extended period (usually over decades) resulting from atmospheric CO2 uptake (Richards et al., 2015).The projected increase in CO2 uptake by oceans at 1.5°C or more global warming will have adverse effects on the growth, development, calcification, survival, and abundance of several aquatic species (IPCC, 2018). Increased accumulation of CO2 in water could result in increased water acidity levels (pH decrease) (Rodrigues et al., 2015) which threatens the environmental sustainability of aquaculture production systems through water quality deterioration leading to poor productivity.
Diseases: Diseases in aquaculture, such as bacterial, parasitic, viral, and fungal diseases are likely to be affected by a changing temperature regime, but in a largely unpredictable manner. What is certain, however, is that when cultured species are exposed to thermal stress conditions, they become more susceptible to diseases and that warmer conditions may result in the establishment of exotic diseases . The vulnerability of finfish and shellfish to pathogens is a major determinant of diseases and is likely to be affected by both direct and indirect thermal stressors (Chiaramonte et al., 2016).
Changes In Rainfall (Precipitation) Pattern: Changes in rainfall patterns will affect aquaculture production and sustainability in two directly opposite ways; increased rainfall (Flooding) and periods of low or no rainfall (Drought). (Bell et al., 2010).Flooding will increase the risk of losing fish from ponds during floods, invasion of ponds by unwanted species, and ponds damage resulting from infilling and washing away of walls. (Rutkayova et al., 2017).Drought events may lead to water stress, such as shortages and quality deterioration that have negative effects on aquaculture production (Hambal et al., 2020).
Sea Level Rise:The rise in sea level may destroy several coastal ecosystems, such as mangroves and salt marshes, which are considered crucial for maintaining wild fish stocks, as well as supplying seed for aquaculture production (Kibria et al., 2017). This will negatively affect aquaculture breeding programs and the economic sustainability of the sector. Higher sea level is predicted to affect aquaculture production facilities, such as ponds, cages, tanks, and pens particularly in lowland regions through the intrusion of saline water (Kibria et al., 2017) Severe Climatic Events: Severe climatic events, such as cyclones, waves, and storms are expected to influence aquaculture development especially marine ornamental products, and those in coastal area (Toussaint et al., 2018). For example, the coral and giant clam farmers in tropical villages may face the risk of increased losses as a result of bleaching, while those in sub-tropical regions are likely to suffer greater risks, such as loss of production equipment and stock due to rougher sea conditions related to stronger cyclones (Hamdan et al., 2012).
Impact Of Climate Change On Indian Fisheries: India has rich and diverse fisheries resources ranging from deep seas to lakes , ponds , rivers and more than 10 % of the global biodiversity in terms of fish and shell fish species. The marine fisheries resources are spread along the countries vast coastline and Exvclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) and large continental shelf area. The inland fisheries resources are in the form of rivers and canals , floodplain lakes , ponds and tanks , reservoirs, brakish water , saline / alkaline affected areas etc. (Department of Fisheries,2022). Currently , India is the third largest fish producing country in the world and accounts for 7.96 percent of the global production . The total fish production during FY 20-21 is estimated at 14.73 MMT with a contribution of 11.25 MMT from inland sector and 3.48 MMT from marine sector. The fisheries sector play an important role in the national economy. During FY 2020-21 exports of marine products stood at 1.15MMT and valued at Rs. 43,717.26 Crores despite the market uncertainties raised by Covid -19 pandemic outbreak.( Handbook Fisheries Statistics 19-01-2023) As for overseas market , USA continued to be the major importer of Indian sea food with an import worth USD 24,047.15 Million , accounting to a share of 41.15 % in terms of dollar value . In 2018 total fisheries potential of India was estimated at 22.31 MMT consisting of marine fisheries potential at 5.31MMT and the inland fisheries potential at 127 MMT. India is also a major producer of fish through aquaculture and ranks second in the world after China .Inland fish production constitutes about 76% of total fish production of the country and annual growth rate of production has also been high . The fish production has shown continuous and sustained increment since independence . Durin FY 2020-21 , 66% of marine fisheries potential and 51% of inland fisheries potential have been harnessed.The fish production has increased from 5.66 MMT in FY 2000-01 to 8.67 MMT in FY 2011-12 and further to 14.73 MMT in FY 2020-21 .(Department of Fisheries,2022)Aquaculture in India is an important economic activity and a flourishing sector with varied resources and potentials. India ranks third in fisheries production, and second in aquaculture. More than 10% of the world’s fish and shellfish species are found in India’s rich and diverse fisheries, including deep seas, lakes, ponds and rivers (Department of Fisheries,2022). The fisheries and aquaculture production contributes around 1% to India’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and over 5% to the agricultural GDP (Department of Fisheries, 2022).Fisheries alone has employed 145 million people and contributed to 1.07 percent of the GDP and generated export earnings of Rs 334.41 billion as per a recent estimate of National Fisheries Development Board.Production from marine capture fisheries has been stagnant during the past 10 years which has been made worse by climate change (Prasanna et al., 2017). Warming of water may impact fish diversity, distribution and abundance . Acidification of water storms, floods ,drought and sea level rise will lower fish production and damage the livelihoods of communities (Brander,2007). It has been estimated that ecosystem services of India will reduce by 25% in 25 years, resulting in cumulative loss of US$17 billion. Therefore, immediate action plans are required to ensure sustainability in both marine and inland fisheries (Prasanna et al., 2017).
Impact Of Climate Change On Jammu And Kashmir Fisheries: Fisheries is a growing sector in Jammu & Kashmir economy which has been registering consistent growth during the past decades. Fish as food is especially important for every segment of the population providing a cost-effective and easily reached source of protein and essential micronutrients (Syeed et.al, 2018). . Fisheries sector is considered as an emerging venture which possesses a potential to contribute to states ’economy in Jammu & Kashmir (J&K) state. Its role in supplementing nutrients and food demand, and generating employment cannot be denied. Modernization and growing economic status of population coupled with changes in the social structures have had a major impact on the fisheries structure in the state (Baba, et.al, 2019). Jammu and Kashmir fish production has reached 24,000MTs annually including 1400 MT of trout fish in 2022 .There are around 15500 fishermen in J&K .At present there are 120 species of fishes from various aquatic habitats in the Jammu and Kashmir State. Among these, 105 species occur in the Jammu region, 23 in the Kashmir Valley, while 15 species inhabit the Ladakh region (J&K Fisheries Department).Climate change has shown impacts on the fisheries of Jammu and Kashmir in the following ways: Indegenious species have started declining as the average temperature in Jammu and Kashmir is increasing due to climatic change. Loss of clean water resources . The impact of climate change, is a threat to trout. As the water levels in Kashmir’s rivers fluctuate alarmingly, from floods to low flow, the trout’s habitat is critically endangered. (Ram ,2016).J&K state imported genetically modified Rainbow Trout Seed from Denmark after 119 years to boost annual production from 500 to 5000 tonnes over the next five years. This means because of the climate change trouts are not able to produce as much eggs as it should have. ( Statesman,2023) In conclusion, Fisheries and aquaculture needs to be blended into national climate change adaptation strategies. Without careful planning, aquatic ecosystems, fisheries and aquaculture can potentially suffer as a result of adaptation measures applied by other sectors, such as increased use of dams and hydropower in catchments with high rainfall, construction of artificial coastal defenses or marine wind farms. Mitigation solutions are not at all wellknown and require in innovative approaches such as the recent inclusion of mangrove conservation. The Ecosystem Approach to Aquaculture (EAA) aims to integrate aquaculture within the wider ecosystem as with any system approach to management; EAA encompasses a complete range of stakeholders, their influences, and other interlinked processes. In addition to the above improvements, it is imperative that the developed countries and the rapidly developing countries formulate strategies to curb greenhouse gas emissions. Developing countries like India should also look at adopting new energy-saving technologies and planting of more trees. The emphasis should also be laid on increasing the use of renewable energy sources like solar and wind. The above facts emphasize the need not only to study in detail the climate change vulnerability of fisheries & aquaculture but also the methods of improving the adaptive capacity of aquaculture to climate variability and extremes
(While Samreena Jan is a Research Scholar, Dr. Bilal A Bhat isProfessor and Head Division of Social Sciences, Faculty of Fisheries, SK Universirty of Agriculture Sciences & Technology Kashmir “SKUAST-K” Srinagar. The views, opinions, facts, assumptions, presumptions and conclusions expressed in this article are those of the authors and aren’t necessarily in accord with the views of “Kashmir Horizon”.)
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