Navigating the Economic Analyses Developed for Amendment 23
This page is a guide to help readers understand the economic impacts tables presented in the Amendment 23 Draft Environmental Impact Statement.
The New England Fishery Management Council is developing Amendment 23 to improve the reliability and accountability of catch reporting in the commercial groundfish fishery. As part of this process, Council staff and scientists at the Northeast Fisheries Science Center analyzed the monitoring options being considered and estimated the economic impacts of each option. Part of these analyses include estimates of the costs for different vessel groupings under different monitoring options. These economic impact assessments can help the Council and the public better understand the potential effects of different management choices.
We developed this page to help you understand the economic impacts tables of the monitoring options under consideration for Amendment 23, and determine which of those impacts might apply most to you and your vessels. For more information about any of the examples presented below, or to see the estimated economic impacts associated with other options being considered through Amendment 23, please see the Amendment 23 Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS).
What are static monitoring cost estimates?
Static cost estimates are generated based on recent fishing effort in previous fishing years. They are called “static” because they are estimates of what the industry’s costs would have been during fishing year 2018 if the industry had been subject to the monitoring options under consideration for Amendment 23. Static cost estimates are helpful because they allow people to consider how the industry’s monitoring costs might change under different monitoring scenarios if nothing else changed.
How do I know which static monitoring cost estimates apply to me?
Below is an example of one of the static cost tables that is included in the Amendment 23 DEIS (Table 128, page 424 of the DEIS). The title indicates that this table shows static monitoring cost estimates associated with the Council’s preferred 100-percent at-sea monitoring coverage alternative, organized by days absent category (i.e., how many days a sector vessel spends at-sea on groundfish trips annually). The title also notes that the low and high cost estimates reflect a range around the average cost, and indicates that costs are presented in thousands of dollars, adjusted for inflation and standardized to 2018 dollars (“2018$, thousands”).
If you want to know which monitoring cost estimates apply to you:
- First, find the days absent category that includes your vessel. For example, if you own a vessel that spends 65 days absent on sector trips each year, the vessel would fall into the greater than 50 but less than, or equal to, 80 (“>50, <=80”) days absent category.
- Next, refer to the range of cost estimates found in the “>50, <=80” row of the table. These are the monitoring cost estimates that would apply to your vessel. For example, the table shows that the range of estimated monitoring costs per vessel for vessels in the “>50, <=80” days absent category is between 45.97 and 50.43. This means that the estimated cost per vessel is between $45,970 and $50,430 per fishing year.
- If you have more than one vessel, you should look up each vessel separately in the tables to get the complete picture for your operations.
These estimates are based on current information and are not predictions of future monitoring costs because costs will change based on a variety of factors that cannot be taken into account by the analysis.
What are dynamic fishery impact estimates?
Dynamic fishery impacts are estimates of the economic impacts to the groundfish fishery as a whole associated with various monitoring options. They are called dynamic because they include expected changes in the level of fishing effort in the groundfish fishery caused by the implementation of a monitoring option. In other words, dynamic fishery impact estimates take into account that some vessels may make different operating decisions when faced with new costs associated with changes in monitoring and monitoring costs. For example, some vessels may take fewer groundfish trips in response to an increase in the costs associated with monitoring.
How do I know which dynamic fishery impact estimates apply to me?
Below is an example of one of the dynamic impact tables included in the Amendment 23 DEIS (Table 134, page 427 of the DEIS). The title indicates that this table shows dynamic impact estimates associated with the Council’s preferred 100 percent at-sea monitoring coverage alternative, organized by vessel size class. The title also indicates that impact estimates are presented in millions of dollars, adjusted for inflation and standardized to 2018 dollars (“2018$, mil”).
If you want to know which impact estimates apply to you:
- First locate the size class option in the table that best fits your fishing vessel. For example, if you own a 60-foot vessel, your vessel would fall into the “50’ to <75’” vessel size class.
- Next, refer to the impact estimates found in the “50’ to <75’” row of the table. These are the impact estimates that would apply to your vessel. For example, the table shows that the estimated cost of at-sea monitoring for vessels in the “50’ to <75’” homeport category is 1.8. This means that the estimated cost of at-sea monitoring for all vessels in the “50’ to <75’” size class is $1,800,000.
- As with the static tables, if you have more than one vessel, you should look at each vessel separately in the tables to get the complete picture for your operations.
What is the difference between cost estimates and operating profit estimates in the dynamic impacts tables?
When reading the other columns in the dynamic impacts tables in the Amendment 23 DEIS, it is important to keep in mind that changes in estimated operating profits are often a better indicator of overall economic impacts than cost estimates alone. This is because operating profits take into account changes in monitoring costs, other operating costs (such as fuel, ice, food, and the value of ACE), and revenue combined. Therefore, operating profit estimates provide a more complete picture of the economic impacts resulting from a given monitoring alternative.
What does “status quo” mean in the last column of the dynamic impacts tables?
The last column in the dynamic impacts tables in the Amendment 23 DEIS refers to changes in operating profits relative to “status quo.” In this case, “status quo” refers to operating profits under a scenario in which industry monitoring costs are zero because 100 percent of industry monitoring costs are reimbursed using federal funding as they were during fishing year 2018. In the “Rel to SQ (%)” column of the dynamic impacts tables, negative numbers indicate that operating profits under a given monitoring alternative are expected to decline relative to status quo, while positive numbers indicate that operating profits are expected to increase relative to status quo. For example, the “Rel to SQ (%) column in table above shows a value of -6.3 for vessels in the “50’ to < 75’” size class. This means that operating profits for these vessels are expected to be 6.3% lower under the 100 percent at-sea monitoring coverage alternative than they would be under status quo. Costs are estimated separately under No Action, which assumes industry-funded monitoring for recent 13 -percent levels of ASM coverage.
Additional Economic Analyses
In this guide, we focused on how to interpret the tables in the Amendment 23 DEIS that present static monitoring cost estimates by days absent category, and dynamic fishery impact estimates by vessel homeport. However, the Amendment 23 DEIS includes both static cost estimates and dynamic fishery impact estimates for each alternative by:
- Days absent category.
- Vessel homeport.
- Vessel size class.
- Groundfish sector.
- The fleet as a whole.
The Amendment 23 DEIS also includes additional economic analyses that present data other than static monitoring cost estimates and dynamic fishery impact estimates. For more details about all the economic analyses completed for Amendment 23, please see the Amendment 23 DEIS (Section 7.5 – Economic Impacts, page 380 – 530) or the Council’s Amendment 23 Public Hearing Document.
For More Information
- To stay up to date on the development of Amendment 23, please see our Amendment 23 web page.
- To learn more about the strategic communications plan we developed for Amendment 23, please see our web story.
- To learn more about how to participate in the development of Amendment 23, please see our Amendment 23 DEIS participation guide.