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Species Vulnerability to Climate Change and the Likelihood of Significant Changes in Spatial Distribution


Atlantic Canada is the focus of a research project to assess the vulnerability of marine life to climate change, including changes in the distribution of species. Map: DFO

As marine ecosystems adapt to climate change, gains or losses in available habitat will alter the distribution of species. This project will develop a reliable method of measuring the vulnerability of species to climate change, providing valuable knowledge for fisheries management in the Maritimes, Gulf of St. Lawrence and Quebec regions.

Specifically, this project will use data from existing databases to deliver:

  • a "Species Vulnerability to Climate Change Assessment" for national application;
  • a prioritized species list, ranked by their vulnerabilities to climate change stressors under the most likely climate change scenarios. This list could be incorporated into risk management exercises for the development of adaptation strategies;
  • maps of present and projected species distribution under the most likely climate change scenarios, which could be used to inform stock assessments; and
  • State of the Oceans report updates on climate issues for the Quebec region.

Program Name

Aquatic Climate Change Adaptation Services Program (ACCASP)


Atlantic: Gulf of St. Lawrence, St. Lawrence Estuary

Principal Investigator(s)

Nancy Shackell
Fisheries and Oceans Canada

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