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An Appraisal of the Social and Cultural Aspects of the Multispecies Groundfish Fishery in New England and the Mid-Atlantic Regions

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Type: Working Paper
Author: Griffiths, David; Dyer, Christopher
Date: 1996
Agency: The National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration, and Aguirre International, Maryland, United States
Series:
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10535/3987
Sector: Fisheries
Region: North America
Subject(s): fisheries
social behavior
resource management
Abstract: "Fishing households relying on the Multispecies Groundfish Fishery (MGF) of New England and the Mid Atlantic are facing a crisis in their communities. Declines in groundfish stocks, and the resultant restrictive Amendments #5 and #7 to the MGF management plan puts many fisher and supporting occupational households in a state of social and economic crisis. The general perception in the MGF fishing communities is that the crisis is the result of recent regulations that dramatically restrict their number of days at sea. These regulations are already hampering the ability of many fishers to survive economically. Yet, causes for the present fishery crisis are complex, include regulation impacts and declines in traditional groundfish stocks, but are also linked to less understood community-level issues and processes and that are the basis of this report. For example, increased costs of fuel, equipment repair, insurance, dockage fees, as well as other factors adversely impact those individuals relying on the MGF. This results in a breakdown of cooperative fishing units, associated formal and informal coping networks, and forms of capital (e.g., social, human, and cultural)."

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