The flip side of conservation in Galapagos: how are fishers’ livelihoods impacted by fishing gear restrictions and no-take zones?
26 Pages Posted:
Date Written: June 29, 2022
Incorporating a social-ecological system approach into natural protected areas management is a challenging endeavor. In Galapagos Islands, previous studies regarding key conservation measures, such as fishing gear restrictions and a new network of no-fishing zones, have overlooked potential impacts of these policies on fishers’ livelihoods. To fill this gap in the literature, we estimate socioeconomic challenges that small-scale fishers would face in the form of loss in productivity and opportunity costs if fishing gear restrictions and no-take zones were fully enforced in Galapagos Islands. Imputing local and global market prices, a longline ban represents potential losses for US$ 4.3 million per year, while no-fishing zones decrease revenues by US$ 1.6 million per year. Altogether, these burdens are equivalent to US$ 5.9 million per year or 2.4% of Galapagos’ GDP. This paper contributes to incorporating a social-ecological approach in analysis of conservation measures, by informing Galapagos’ managers of the costs to the social side of the system. We discuss alternatives to implement conservation measures in Galapagos while keeping in mind impacts on fishers’ livelihoods and specific challenges of the archipelago.
Keywords: Galapagos, conservation, small-scale fisheries, socio-ecological system.
JEL Classification: Q50, Q57
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation