Among the drivers considered in MEECE, fisheries can be managed at local or sub-regional spatial scale with generally relatively short (annual/multi-annual) response time in populations to management measures. Therefore, compared to other drivers, management of fisheries is relatively specific and easy to implement by direct restrictions on the driver in the area and regarding the ecosystem component concerned.
Consequently, among the drivers considered in MEECE, short term management evaluation frameworks are applicable for fisheries given the level of knowledge and data and the nature of the impact fisheries has on the ecosystem, with at least some immediate effects in terms of removals of biomass of species from the system. At the same time, fishing is clearly one of the drivers with most widespread and substantial impacts on marine ecosystems, where direct economic interests and needs have motivated the development of management models and related research for decades.
The scientific basis for developing management strategies and their evaluation tools is most advanced with respect to fisheries, where sophisticated modelling frameworks are being developed and continuously improved to facilitate moving towards a holistic ecosystem based approach to fisheries management.
Fact sheet describing how MEECE science can support the Marine Strategy Framework Directive descriptor on Commercial fisheries