December 1, 2017 IOF Seminar: Measuring the carbon footprint of global fisheries and aquaculture.

Join us on Friday for the last IOF Seminar of 2017!


Measuring the carbon footprint of global fisheries and aquaculture


Dr. Robert Parker

NSERC Postdoctoral Fellow

Fisheries Economic Research Unit


Friday, December 1, 2017

11:00 am

AERL Theatre (120)


Food production is one of the largest contributors to climate change, accounting for roughly one quarter of global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Diets and food choices, particularly as they pertain to animal protein, also provide one of the most effective ways for individuals to limit their own carbon footprints. Over the past 15 years, a growing number of seafood production systems have been assessed to determine their relative contributions to GHGs and other emissions. These studies have primarily used a tool called life cycle assessment — capturing the impacts at each stage of production from ocean to plate — producing over 60 papers to date from case studies in both wild capture and aquaculture systems.


This presentation is intended to provide a brief overview of observed patterns in GHG emissions from fisheries and aquaculture as well as consistent drivers and opportunities for improvement across the industry. Results will be presented from a recently accepted paper to Nature Climate Change modelling the GHG emissions of the global fishing industry. Finally, the presentation will preview work being done in collaboration with Dalhousie University and Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Seafood Watch program to communicate the carbon footprint of fisheries and aquaculture production via an interactive website.


Robert Parker has been a postdoctoral research fellow at the Institute for the Oceans and Fisheries since January 2017. He completed his PhD at the University of Tasmania where he quantified the rates and drivers of fuel consumption in Australian and global fisheries. He has conducted life cycle assessments of Antarctic krill fisheries, lobster fisheries, and Atlantic salmon farming, and has worked with industry and non-governmental organizations interested in understanding the application of carbon footprinting and life cycle assessments to seafood operations and products. His current work focuses on modelling seafood supply chains as sources of protein and caloric energy, and relating the relative environmental performance of seafood systems to their ability to provide a net nutritional benefit.

Photo Credit: Kevin Dooley from flickr/ Creative Commons