Sebastian Villasante, G. Macho, N. Calvo, D. Wethey, S. Woodin & E. Vázquez Otero

Social adaptation to climate change in Galician (Northwest Spain) shellfisheries

The gender dimensions in European Union fisheries are frequently not taken into account, especially in coastal areas where small-scale fisheries are highly important, such as Galicia (Northwest Spain). This paper provides the first comprehensive analysis of how climate change may have an impact on European fishery that involves women: intertidal shellfish gathering in Galicia. This paper uses quantitative and qualitative data collected through questionnaires and interviews to: 1) analyse the perceptions of women about the climate change impacts on shellfish species that they harvest; 2) investigate possible adaptive strategies developed by women to cope with expected impacts of climate change on shellfish species; and to 3) understand how the development of shell-fisherwomen organizations have helped to resist the current crisis and how they may help to shape new transformations needed toward sustainable paths in this sector.

Keywords: small-scale fisheries, Galicia (Northwest Spain), women, adaptive capacity, global change.

Figure: Galician redeira in Portonovo (1960 ca) (© Bea Martínez / Galician Fisherman Guild Federation).