The Orange Roughy Assessment of the Ecological Effects of Fishing (AEEF) is an ecological risk assessment that is driven by management objectives that are based of the Marine Stewardship Council P2 (Environmental Effects) certification requirements. Essentially the AEEF evaluates the consequence and likelihood of ecological effects that may occur, or are occurring, as a result of exposure to fishing for orange roughy.
The AEEF will address the ecosystem effects of four target orange roughy fisheries. These are ORH3B East and South Chatham Rise (ORH3B ESCR), ORH3B Northwest Rise (ORH3B NWCR), ORH2A 2B, 3A combined (ORH MEC), and ORH7A (including Westpac Bank which lies outside the EEZ). It will provide a focused assessment of the effect of the four target orange roughy fisheries across five primary ecological components that embrace all parts of the marine ecosystem within which the fisheries operate. These components partition the overall ecosystem into the different ecosystem areas that are potentially impacted by each of these fisheries.
These ecological components are:
- Non-target retained species - the direct effects on species or stocks that are incidentally caught along with the target species and are retained either because they have value or there is legal requirement
- By-catch - the direct effect on species or stocks that are incidentally caught along with the target species but are discarded, usually because they have no value
- Endangered, threatened and protected species (ETP species) – the direct effect on ETP species that are incidentally caught - in practice, these will be legally protected species under domestic law or protected under international treaty
- Habitats -direct effects on habitat structure and function that may be directly impacted by the fishery
- Ecosystem - indirect effects on ecosystem structure and function.
While the purpose of AEEF is to identify the issues or components that are assessed to be of moderate to high risk and to separate these from those that are of negligible to low risk, and to determine the specific sources of risk for each component; the overall objective of the AEEF is to inform managers of the risks to ecological components associated with each these four target orange roughy fisheries.
Within this overall objective, there are three main sub-objectives:
- To identify and assess the risks to ecological components and the level of those risks;
- To identify the degree of confidence associated with each assessment; and,
- To identify any information gaps associated with each assessment.
This information will be used to inform orange roughy fisheries managers who will develop and implement relevant work programs to improve sustainable management outcomes which may include independent third party certification.
The AEEF will use the best science information available in making its assessments. The primary sources of information will be published and peer reviewed MPI science research reports and the primary scientific literature published in refereed scientific journals. Determinations of risk at the AEEF are undertaken by an Expert Panel, from Government, Industry and non-governmental organisations in a workshop setting that is open to any stakeholder or interested party.
The supporting documents include the methodology, agenda and AEEF scientific and technical information.
Methodology and Agenda
AEEF scientific and technical information
1 & 2. Retained and By-catch Species
Retained and By-catch Species Reports
Sharks Skates Rays Reports
3. 3. ETP Component –
Thompson and Abraham (2013) Protected Species By-catch in orange Roughy trawl fisheries 2002-03 to 2011-12 Report for MPI
ETP Sharks and Fishes
Conservation Service Programme