Scandinavian Working Papers in Economics

Working Paper Series,
Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department Economics

No 2016:3: Habitat quality and fish population: impacts of nutrient enrichment on populations of European perch off the east coast of Sweden

Wondmagegn Tirkaso () and Ing-Marie Gren ()
Additional contact information
Wondmagegn Tirkaso: Department of Economics, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Postal: Department of Economics, Box 7013, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, SE-750 07 Uppsala, Sweden
Ing-Marie Gren: Department of Economics, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Postal: Department of Economics, Box 7013, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, SE-750 07 Uppsala, Sweden

Abstract: Degradation of marine ecosystems through e.g., eutrophication and climate change is a concern for sustainable fishery management world-wide, but studies on associated impacts on fish populations are rare. This study examined the effects of eutrophying nutrient loads on perch populations along the Swedish east coast. A modified Gordon-Schaefer logistic growth model was used for econometric estimation of perch populations in the study area, based on annual time series data for the period 1970-2014. Regression analysis using the fully modified ordinary least square (FMOLS) estimator revealed that phosphorus loads had significant effects on the perch population. A 40% decrease in phosphorus loads, as suggested by the international Copenhagen agreement, could increase the steady state perch population by 50%. Simple calculations showed that this could increase the discounted harvest value of the perch by 30%.

Keywords: nutrient loads; perch populations; logistic growth; econometrics; Swedish east coast

JEL-codes: Q22; Q53; Q57

22 pages, September 29, 2016

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