Impact of climate change on fishing in the Gulf of Gabès

As part of the implementation of the project “Global and Integrated Approaches to Adaptation to Climate Change in Africa – Case of the Tunisian Coastline”, the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) in Tunisia, in collaboration with the Coastal Protection and Planning Agency (APAL).

Four activities were carried out within the framework of this project, and in harmony with the Memorandum of Understanding signed with the donor. These 4 activities have been grouped under two major cultural events, the first on November 24 and 25 and December 24, 2012. The two themes covered are:

• The climate changes and the fisherman adapts.

• Climate change in the eyes of our children The first event targeted fishermen and civil society to raise awareness of climate change and increase measures for acclimatization and adaptation.

This event ended with a brainstorming workshop with the fishermen in order to identify adaptive measures and adequate fishing practices. The fishing techniques selected were the traps with characteristics well suited to the fishing areas of Gannouch and Zarrat fitted out by artificial reefs. Also a demonstration on the beach of Ghannouch with a hundred people which was animated on the theme of Climate Change and the adaptation of citizens. In this context, the association celebrated for the first time in Tunisia “World Fisheries Day” in Gabes from 24 to 25 November 2012 under the theme “the climate is changing and the fisherman is adapting”.

The second day of this event took place in Ghannouch, a flagship site for artisanal fishing. Indeed under the gaze of more than 200 people and with the participation of more than 22 fishermen, a race of artisanal rowing boats was organized. A cultural activity on the beach accompanied the event in order to enhance visitors’ understanding of the importance of Climate Change and its effect on their daily lives.

The second cultural event targeted the children of fishermen in order to make them aware of climate change and to see through their visions our daily life and our environment. Disposable cameras were distributed to children after an awareness session to empower them and invite them to photograph their childhood lives and their vision of Climate Change. Under this same theme, a painting on wood workshop was organized in collaboration with the fishing groups of Ghannouch and the children’s club of Zarrat.

For half a day, the fisherman’s children made paintings oriented to climate change on a flagship product “wood”. Indeed this product has several meanings including deforestation one of the causes of Climate Change but also wood as the main product of artisanal fishing boats.