Alaska’s Sablefish Fishery Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/conference_proceedings_or_journals/pg15bk19d

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  • Alaska is the world’s principal supplier of Sablefish Anoplopoma fimbria a buttery-flavored whitefish greatly prized in Japan. Sablefish are distributed from Baja California to western Japan but the majority of commercial catches are from the Gulf of Alaska and the Aleutian Islands off Alaska. Landings volume and value of this long-lived demersal fish are comparable to those of the better-known Pacific Halibut Hippoglossus stenolepis. Like Pacific Halibut, Alaska region catches of Sablefish are managed under an Individual Fishing Quota (IFQ) program implemented in 1995. We present a simultaneous equation market model for Sablefish and use the model to examine linkages between landings volume and exvessel prices and revenues including the sensitivity of Alaska exvessel price and revenue to changes in landings, to changes resulting from the implementation of IFQs and to changes in the Japanese economy. Model simulations indicate that markets could absorb substantially more Sablefish than can be sustainably harvested from the current stock of Alaska region Sablefish. However, sluggishness in the Japanese economy has resulted in overall downward pressure on Alaska region Sablefish exvessel prices. Model simulations indicate that IFQ implementation in this fishery significantly increased exvessel revenues, beyond what they would have increased, as a consequence of longer seasons that resulted from an end of the race-for-fish. In addition, we find that IFQ implementation has helped buffer the fishery against revenue losses associated with reduced catch limits triggered by the decline of Sablefish biomass in the Alaska region.
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  • 097634324X

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