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A Cautionary Note on Individual Transferable Quotas

U. Rashid Sumaila, UBC Fisheries Centre, University of British Columbia

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Abstract

Individual transferable quotas (ITQs) are a type of catch share system, which is a tool used by some governments to manage fisheries. Technical reasons for taking a rather cautious approach to the implementation of ITQs have been provided previously. In the current contribution, I first highlight the strengths and weaknesses of ITQs and then provide suggestions on how to design and implement these quotas to mitigate their weaknesses. ITQs need to be designed carefully as part of a broad ecosystem-based management scheme to meet the three generally accepted objectives of modern fisheries management: ecological, economic, and social sustainability.

Key words

catch shares; ecological sustainability; economic sustainability; economic efficiency; exclusive and transferable rights; ecosystem-based fisheries management; fisheries; individual transferable quotas; ITQs; social sustainability
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Ecology and Society. ISSN: 1708-3087