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Fish Gene Bank to Help Cope with Climate Change

Sustainability Breeding & genetics Politics +3 more

INDIA - Experts have recommended setting up a common gene bank for vulnerable fish species as well as setting up fish sanctuaries in order to mitigate the impacts of climate change on fish stocks.

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The recommendations were made after the Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute (CMFRI) submitted the Country Status Report (CSR) about the impact of climate change on coastal fisheries and aquaculture sector.

The ICAR institute, the leading fish research body in the country, presented the report at a meeting between the SAARC Agriculture Centre (SAC) and representatives from the SAARC nations held through video conference, the TimesOfIndia reported.

The report exposed disruptions caused by climate change in areas such as marine ecosystem, fish stock, harvesting sector, aquaculture, market and trade. The present condition of fishing communities was also included in the report.

During the conference, members representing fisheries and aquaculture sector of SAARC member countries reviewed remedial steps to be taken to mitigate the impact of climate change and finalised a set of recommendations to be followed by member countries.

In the recommendations, the meeting prioritised developing collaborative and comprehensive efforts to address climate vulnerabilities. Conduct of awareness programmes on reducing greenhouse gas emissions and expansion of open sea cage farming and pen culture in coastal water bodies were also listed among the recommendations.

Among the other noteworthy recommendations finalised during the meeting include introduction of saline temperature tolerant and fast-growing fish species for coastal aquaculture, establishment of fish sanctuary for improvement of natural stocks and setting up common gene bank for vulnerable species.