Sustainable aquaculture and aquatic resources management

By Brian Davy, 24/09/2010 | .mp3, 14.19 MB | 762 views | Download soundtrack Stream soundtrack
Programme: Global Conference on Aquaculture 2010

The Bangkok Declaration and Strategy for Aquaculture Development Beyond 2000 stressed that adequate investment in aquaculture is essential for its future development. It identifies several constraints on this investment and makes recommendations for addressing the issues involved. For example, it recognises the risk and uncertainty associated with returns from investment in aquaculture to be an important constraint on aquaculture investment. This is particularly so because insurance markets only provide very limited coverage for aquaculturists.

Since 2000, research has been undertaken by the FAO to address many of the issues raised in the Bangkok Declaration. This process has not been straightforward because most of the objectives for investment in aquaculture set out in this declaration are indicative rather than operational. In addition, some constraints that are not mentioned in the Bangkok Declaration of 2000 have started to seriously impede aquaculture development. Economic growth generally and the expansion of aquaculture itself have resulted in increased scarcity of resources vital for the growth of aquaculture. For example, water has become scarcer, available new sites for aquaculture are becoming more difficult to obtain, and environmental and ecological problems of consequence for aquaculture have magnified. Because of the latter aspect, greater regulation of economic activity, including aquaculture production is occurring.

These growing problems appear to have resulted in a decline in the rate of growth of aquaculture production and are associated with a slight decline in the global per capita availability of fish. This poses new challenges for investment in aquaculture and its future growth. The future development of aquaculture is likely to depend more on the intensification of aquaculture production and less on its extension than in the past. Furthermore, the future development of aquaculture is expected to become more dependent on advances in science and technology than in the past and therefore, investment in science and technology and its application to aquaculture will be of growing importance.

Apart from tightening resource constraints on the development of aquaculture, high levels of exposure to risk and uncertainty in aquaculture continue to restrict investment in aquaculture and stunt its development. Attention is therefore given in this paper to identifying the factors that contribute to risk and uncertainty in aquaculture and methods of specifying the risk and uncertainty involved. The latter should be done by taking into account consequences of these methods for decision-making by aquafarmers. Alternative methods of managing and coping with risk and aquaculture are outlined and particular attention is given to insurance of assets as a way to cope with risk in aquaculture. Ways of extending the availability of insurance cover for aquafarmers are outlined.

It is found that there is limited practical scope for the extension of insurance markets in aquaculture, although with economic development, it is likely that extension will occur naturally. This means that most aquafarmers have to rely on other means to manage and cope with risk and uncertainty. There is scope for further exploration of their managerial alternatives for coping with risk and uncertainty in aquaculture.



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