September 27, 2013

How do catch share programs affect fish stocks, fishermen, fishing businesses, and fishing communities?

We are pleased to announce the first report of interim results from the five-year Measuring the Effects of Catch Shares project, which is dedicated to providing objective, scientifically sound information to help answer that vital question.

Featured in today’s release is an initial set of interim results for the West Coast groundfish trawl fishery. Because the catch share program is so new, it is too soon to say whether changes observed in its first year or two result from implementation of catch shares or other influences. Effects of a new catch share program will almost certainly play out for years, perhaps decades, and it will be some time before effects of the program can be reported fully.

Currently, the results are presented in the form of interactive charts, which enable users to explore the data and to dig deeper into the results, and technical descriptions of the findings. In the coming months and years, we will provide additional reporting formats to make the results accessible and useful for a range of audiences, and the reports will be updated with new data. The website at will become a dashboard of sorts for monitoring changes in the catch share fisheries.

For the Northeast Multispecies Sector Program, the first report of initial results is scheduled for fall 2013.

Download the complete announcement detailing the release of West Coast Groundfish Interim Results.