Latest innovative sustainability research studies how climate change will impact seafood security

Research Excellence | Strategy 10: Research Culture
Theme: Innovation
Aerial view of an open-ocean fish farm. Photo: Hanson Lu/ Unsplash.

In a study recently published in Global Change Biology, Dr. Muhammed Oyinlola, postdoctoral fellow at UBC’s Institute for the Oceans and Fisheries, and Dr. William Cheung, Canada Research Chair in Ocean Sustainability under Global Change at UBC’s Institute for the Oceans and Fisheries, looked at how climate change could impact 85 species of fish and molluscs that are most commonly farmed in seawater. They found that certain species like Atlantic salmon, European seabass and cobia, and certain areas like the tropics and the Arctic, could be particularly vulnerable to the impacts of climate change.

Dr. Oyinlola, who was a PhD student with the Nippon Foundation-UBC Nereus Program when he conducted the study, said, “Tropical and subtropical regions rely the most heavily on seafood for food security, income and employment, but our projections show that they are likely to suffer the greatest losses.”

“People are counting on aquaculture to produce seafood to meet the growing demand while capture fisheries have reached their limits or being over-exploited. However, this study highlights that fish farming will not be exempt from the impacts of climate change,” said Dr. Cheung, principal investigator of the study.

Dr. Cheung and Dr. Oyinlola’s study is an example of research that addresses the problems facing society that UBC is supporting through Strategy 10: Research Culture.

UBC is ranked the number one university in the world for taking urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts, according to Times Higher Education. Learn more about this study and about other innovative sustainability research at UBC.