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This article utilizes a census of vessels before and after implementation of catch shares in the Bering Sea/Aleutian Island (BSAI) crab fisheries to examine the short-run effects of catch shares on employment and remuneration of crew. The number of individuals employed declined proportionately to the exit of vessels following implementation. Total crew hours dedicated to fishing activities remained roughly constant, while employment in redundant pre- and post-season activities declined due to the consolidation of quota on fewer vessels. We find little evidence of substantial changes in the share contracts used to compensate fishermen. Finally, we explore a wide array of remuneration measures for crew and conclude that both seasonal and daily employment remuneration increased substantially for many crew in the post-rationalization fishery, while remuneration per unit of landings declined as a result of a combination of increased crew productivity and the necessity of paying for fishing quota in the new system.
Fisheries managers use licenses as a method of capping the size of a fishing industry, but as management goals change and the size of fishery stocks fluctuate, managers may be faced with the decision to buy back licenses. The vast majority of economic literature on license buyback programs focuses on the changes to economic efficiency of the fleet, often citing changes to the composition of fleet size. However, managers have little guidance in deciding how to structure a buyback auction, despite the fact that the auction structure plays a key role in determining which licenses are retired and in the composition of the remaining fleet. With the Texas Park and Wildlife Department's Inshore Shrimp License Buyback Program as a basis for auction design, this research uses three experimental treatments to analyze how individuals respond to various reverse auction structures. In terms of the quickest license expiration, our experiments suggest that fisheries managers should select a binding auction with no sequential quality. However, we find that managers would see higher average bids from fishers in comparison to the two sequential auctions. The results are also relevant to other environmental programs in which environmental services are purchased over time in a sequential reverse auction.
The Mekong Delta in Vietnam has become an important production area for pangasius. The importance of the sector in providing an income to many households means that it is relevant to study its economic production characteristics. In this article we use a stochastic cost frontier model to assess the adaptability of the sector. We are particularly interested in the effect of the changing market environment and the exponential growth of the sector on the evolution of production characteristics. We compare data from 2002 with 2006 data. The results show that pangasius farming became more efficient by 2006, with higher returns to scale. We discuss the possible policy implications of our findings.
A hedonic valuation strategy is introduced to estimate the marginal value of sportfishing harvest. The strategy uses market prices, thereby avoiding some of the measurement problems associated with the constructed or proxy prices used in common valuation methods. A charter fee hedonic equation is estimated using data from the market for offshore charter fishing in the Gulf of Mexico. The marginal value of sportfishing harvest is identified using spatial variation in harvest rates and fish sizes. A two-stage minimum distance estimator is used to address potential omitted variables and cluster-sampling issues. Our results demonstrate that valid estimates of the marginal value of sportfishing harvest can be derived directly using market prices. The estimated marginal value per fish is consistent with published estimates using alternative methods. Thus, the hedonic approach suggested in this article offers promise as an independent validation of the typical methods used to value sportfishing harvest.
This article investigates interactions between recreational and commercial fisheries. It introduces the idea of a protected area for recreational fisheries as a way to reduce conflicts between the two sectors and to preserve the natural resources. It is demonstrated that without a protected area for recreational fisheries, open access may imply that only one sector survives. A protected area can assure the operation of both sectors, even under open access. This will also enhance the aggregate fish stock and the aggregate harvest, both in open access and in the optimal management of recreational fisheries, even if commercial fisheries operate under an open-access regime.