FV Cornelia Marie with crab pots. NOAA photo by Michael Theberge, 2nd Mate Coastal Merchant
This article was originally published in Hakai Magazine, a magazine that explores coastal science, society, and environment.
Managing commercial fishing activity is a complicated job, one in which every small decision can have far-reaching consequences. Whether to regulate fishing based on season, area, or gear type, and whether to allot quotas for fishing activity—and if so, how many, and to whom?—are all decisions prone to triggering unexpected repercussions.
So when the US government decided in 2005 to implement a quota system for select red king and snow crab fisheries in Alaska’s Aleutian Islands and Bering Sea—the same crab
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