The Aquaculture Advisory Council Working Group on Horizontal Issues seeks an external consultant to provide insight on the impacts of climate change on aquaculture and possible contribution of aquaculture to mitigation of climate change. This study will serve as a basis to provide advice to the European Commission, to the Member States and to European aquaculture stakeholders.

Background

Climate change occupies a top-level position in European and national political agendas. The European Green Deal and its main strategies related to food production (Farm to fork and Biodiversity) establish bold objectives on carbon neutrality in Europe for the forthcoming years. The European Commission also recently adopted a new EU strategy on adaptation to climate change[1]. Consequently, the aquaculture sector, on one hand, needs to contribute to cutting emissions in order to allow the EU to become a climate neutral economy by 2050 and, on the other hand, the sector also needs to adapt to climate change, by developing and applying more resilient technologies and species.

The new Strategic guidelines for a more sustainable and competitive EU aquaculture for the period 2021 to 2030[2] also reminds that the Green Deal and the Farm to Fork Strategy underline the potential of farmed seafood as a source of protein for food and feed with a low-carbon footprint which has an important role to play in helping to build a sustainable food system. The Guidelines also highlights that dedicated sectoral adaptation strategies should address the aquaculture sector specifically. Currently, aquaculture is rarely mentioned in the climate adaptation plans of members states, although the aquatic food production sector is among the ones with the lowest GHG emission and so it has the potential of ensuring food security with neutral effect on the climate at the same time. 

Beside of climate adaptation, aquaculture has a role to play in mitigating the impact of climate change through several activities. This feature of the sector should also be better acknowledged and promoted in the future. The Strategic Guidelines describes that certain types of aquaculture can help preserve ecosystems which provide protection against climate-change impacts.

 

Objectives and output

This study aims to provide insight and advice to the European Commission, to the Member States and to European aquaculture stakeholders, on the impacts of climate change on aquaculture and possible contribution of aquaculture to mitigation of climate change. However, since the aquaculture sector is very diverse in species and technologies, this work should focus on the most common and relevant aquaculture species, for example salmon, seabass/seabream, mussel/oyster, trout and common carp; and technologies, both in intensive and extensive production technologies including RAS (Recirculatory Aquaculture System), and closed systems on land and at sea.  

 

This work will therefore analyse and deliver on the following issues:

1. Review of EU legislation in the context of aquaculture and climate change.

2. Review of scientific papers on the aquaculture technologies related to climate change (mitigation, adaptation).

3. Climate change impacts on the various aquaculture technologies in marine and freshwater.

4. How resilient aquaculture is compared to other food sectors? (Risks and opportunities, best practices).

5. Forecast: How aquaculture will adapt to climate change, what changes are foreseen, how to help this change?

6. Aquaculture best practices contributing to mitigation of climate change (finfish and shellfish).

7. Recommendations.

8. References.

 

Deliverables and timeline

Sep – Oct 2021: Call for candidates and selection.

Nov – Feb   2021: Consultant gathers information, analyses data and participates to the Working Group meetings

Mar – Apr: Draft report sent to Focal Group and approved by WG-3

Project duration: 6 months 

 

Budget

The budget for this work is EUR 8,000 including VAT.

 

If interested, please send your CV and a list of publications on the topic in English to the AAC Secretariat by the 11 October 2021: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

[1] COMMUNICATION FROM THE COMMISSION TO THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT, THE COUNCIL, THE EUROPEAN ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL COMMITTEE AND THE COMMITTEE OF THE REGIONS Forging a climate-resilient Europe - the new EU Strategy on Adaptation to Climate Change COM/2021/82 final

[2] COMMUNICATION FROM THE COMMISSION TO THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT, THE COUNCIL, THE EUROPEAN ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL COMMITTEE AND THE COMMITTEE OF THE REGIONS Strategic guidelines for a more sustainable and competitive EU aquaculture for the period 2021 to 2030 COM/2021/236 final