Climate change now a fact of life in Atlantic Canada fishery

DFO report finds climate change leading to declines in some species of sea life, increases in others

Climate change now a fact of life in Atlantic Canada fishery

A new report by the Department of Fisheries and Oceans says warming sea temperatures off Nova Scotia have led to declines in northern shrimp and snow crab. ( Fish, Food and Allied Workers)

Canada's fisheries minister says the impacts of climate change are a fact of life that will have to be factored in the management of Canada's multi-billion dollar seafood industry.

"That variable of climate change is new, and it's a new variable we didn't have to account for in the past. We're going to have to account for it now," Jonathan Wilkinson said in an interview with CBC News.

Wilkinson was commenting on the first Atlantic Ocean status report issued by the Department of Fisheries and Oceans. It says warmer sea temperatures, less ice cover and changing currents in Canada's Atlantic Ocean are the result of global climate change.

The State of the Atlantic Ocean report, released this week, summarizes the overall health and trends in the Atlantic Ocean based on scientific research and monitoring from DFO and Environment and Climate Change Canada.

Last week, Environment Canada released its own report. It says Canada is, on average, experiencing warming at twice the rate of the rest of the world, with northern Canada heating up at almost three times the global average.

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