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Earth Week: Climate and Fisheries

April 18, 2022

To celebrate Earth Day, see how our scientists are studying and tracking changes in our environment to better understand and respond to climate change.

Graphic with image of Earth in the center and corals, seals, and fish with the rise of temperatures to illustrate climate change

Earth Day is April 22, a time to honor and celebrate our incredible planet. It is also a time to recognize the serious challenges ahead, especially in the face of a changing climate. We know climate change is already impacting our ocean and coastal resources. This week, we are taking a look at the ways NOAA Fisheries scientists are using the best available science to prepare for and respond to changing climate and ocean conditions.

Explore the features below to see how our scientists are studying the impacts and providing best-in-class data and information for a Climate-Ready Nation.

NOAA Fisheries Invites Public Comment on Draft Climate Regional Action Plans

NOAA Fisheries is soliciting input on its draft Climate Regional Action Plans to address climate-science needs in each region over the next three years.

More about the draft Climate Regional Action Plans

Climate Science Strategy Regional Action Plans

NOAA Ship Reuben Lasker
NOAA Ship Reuben Lasker. Credit. NOAA

Adapting to the Future: Two NOAA Scientists Discuss New Global Report on Climate Change

NOAA Fisheries podcaster John Sheehan talks with Dr. Kirstin Holsman and Dr. Libby Jewett, two of the authors of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report. They share insights on some of the very real challenges of climate change, as well some actionable information. 

Listen to the podcast

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Graphic of globe showing sea surface height change from 1992 to 2019
Graphic of globe showing sea surface height change from 1992 to 2019. Credit: NASA.

Video: U.S. Fisheries Face Climate Challenges

Climate change is affecting where fish live, what they eat, and how many of them survive in the ocean. Watch the video below to learn more about what is changing and what we are doing to understand the effects of climate change on fish stocks.

Learn more about climate and fisheries

New Global Forecasts of Marine Heatwaves Foretell Ecological and Economic Impacts

The forecasts could help fishing fleets, ocean managers, and coastal communities anticipate the effects of marine heatwaves.

Learn more about new global forecasts of marine heatwaves

The latest global marine heatwave forecast showing the predicted probability of marine heatwaves for September 2022
The latest global marine heatwave forecast showing the predicted probability of marine heatwaves for September 2022. Forecasts are experimental guidance, providing insight from the latest climate models. To see the latest marine heatwave maps and forecasts, visit NOAA's Physical Sciences Laboratory's Marine Heatwaves page.

New State-of-Art-Tool for Mapping Marine Species Distribution Information

This portal provides easy access to information on the distribution of over 800 marine fish and invertebrate species! The new portal enables users to view, download, and dynamically explore and visualize data and information on species distributions. Specifically, users can select a species of interest and view both changes in its spatial distribution on a map as well as time-series graphs of key distribution indicators (e.g., average latitude and depth). Our goal for the portal is to increase the ease by which information on species distribution changes can be accessed, explored, understood and used to inform decision making. 

Launch the Distribution Mapping and Analysis Portal

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A visualization of the species richness (predicted number of species by location) from annual West Coast survey trawl data. The graph shows that marine fish and invertebrates in this region have shifted 52 miles north on average.
A visualization of the species richness (predicted number of species by location) from annual West Coast survey trawl data. The graph shows that marine fish and invertebrates in this region have shifted 52 miles north on average.

Join Us for NOAA Fisheries' Earth Week 2022

A message from Assistant Administrator Janet Coit highlighting NOAA Fisheries’ work to build a more resilient nation in the face of climate change.

Read Janet's leadership message on Earth Week 2022

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Rainbow over Mukilteo Field Station on the waterfront of Puget Sound in Mukilteo, Washington
Rainbow over Mukilteo Field Station on the waterfront of Puget Sound in Mukilteo, Washington. Credit: NOAA Fisheries

Checking in with NOAA Fisheries Climate Scientists

“Dive Into the Issue”: Visualizing Climate Change With Melissa Karp

Explore how NOAA Fisheries’ new, interactive fisheries data portal shows how specific marine species’ locations have shifted over time, which may be in response to climate change. This tool can help us better understand and respond to these changes.

Visualizing climate change with new fisheries data portal

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A visualization of the species richness (predicted number of species by location) from annual Gulf of Alaska survey trawl data.
A visualization of the species richness (predicted number of species by location) from annual Gulf of Alaska survey trawl data.

“Climate Change at the Water’s Edge”: Understanding the Impacts of Black Mangroves on Juvenile Shrimp

Climate change is transforming estuaries along the Gulf Coast. Learn how these changes may impact shrimp populations with two NOAA Fisheries shrimp experts.

Understanding impacts of black mangroves on juvenile shrimp

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A photo of Jennifer Doerr and Jennifer Leo in the Galveston Laboratory alongside Dr. Spinrad
Jennifer Doerr and Jennifer Leo in the Galveston Laboratory alongside NOAA Administrator Dr. Richard Spinrad. Credit: Keeley Belva/NOAA Fisheries

“An Era of Surprises”: Studying Climate Change and Salmon With Nate Mantua

NOAA Fisheries scientist Nate Mantua discusses why he started studying salmon as well as how climate change and anchovies are threatening salmon on the West Coast.

Studying climate change and salmon

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Nate Mantua off the coast of Sonoma County on a charter boat that is part of the cooperative salmon sampling program.
Nate Mantua off the coast of Sonoma County on the New Sea Angler, a charter boat based in Bodega Bay that is part of the cooperative salmon sampling program. Photo courtesy of Nate Mantua.

“A Better Chance for Resilience”: Using Hungry Fish to Conserve Coral Reefs

NOAA Fisheries scientist Tye Kindinger explains how identifying the best seaweed-grazing fish in the Pacific Islands region can help fight against seaweed overgrowth and promote recovery of distressed coral reefs.

Using hungry fish to conserve coral reefs

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A school of large parrotfish (Chlorurus frontalis) observed during fish surveys on a coral reef.
A school of large parrotfish (Chlorurus frontalis) observed during fish surveys on a coral reef. These fish use their bird-like beaks to scrape away seaweed, preventing establishment of seaweed on reefs. Larger parrotfish remove small amounts of underlying substrate, which creates new spaces for corals to grow. Credit: Kevin Lino/NOAA Fisheries

More Features

Video: Our Climate and Our Fisheries

Changes in the earth's atmosphere—due to human activities—have led to warming of the planet. Watch the video below to learn what climate change really means for our planet.

Progress Report on NOAA Fisheries Climate Science Strategy

NOAA Fisheries recently released a five year progress report on its Climate Science Strategy. The report highlights the goals, activities and accomplishments of the seven climate Regional Action Plans and national efforts from 2016-2020. Continuing to meet the goals of the Climate Science Strategy will require enhanced resources to support data collection and management efforts, IT infrastructure and modeling capacity, and fostering strong communication between scientists, managers, and stakeholders.

Learn more about the Five Year Progress Report on NOAA Fisheries Climate Science Strategy

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Chinook salmon spawn
Chinook salmon spawn. Credit: NOAA Fisheries

 

Last updated by Office of Communications on April 22, 2022

Climate