Resource Conflicts: Challenges to Fisheries Management at the São Francisco River, Brazil
The paper describes factors influencing artisanal fisheries at the São Francisco River in Brazil as an example of the challenges of managing socially and economically valued common-pool resource systems. A rapid assessment of problems affecting São Francisco River fisheries in 10 communities was carried out in 2003, representing the upper, middle, and lower river portions. Field visits, interviews, focus group discussions and a literature survey allowed us to map socioeconomic and environmental factors important to the fisheries, including conflicts and tensions between stakeholders. Federal, state, and municipal governments, industries, farmers, hydroelectric companies, and urban and rural populations all have a stake in river use. Traditional fishers are the most disadvantaged of these stakeholders. With declining fish populations, most of the fishing communities surveyed are now poor, socially excluded, and with few alternative livelihood options. The stakeholders involved in access and use conflicts are artisanal fishers, professional fishers, sport fishers, farmers, enforcement and regulatory agencies, and hydroelectric companies. Traditional fishers have close ties to the river and its environment and they are usually not invited to contribute to resource management decisions. We recommend changes to management structures involving the fishing communities that are essential to resolve the major conflicts and to improve equity and sustainability of artisanal fisheries.
KeywordsArtisanal Fisheries Resource Conflicts Common-pool Resources Brazil
We thank all fishers, their families, and communities, as well as the municipal and government agents that participated in the surveys, including Raimundo Marques of the Federation of Professional Fishers, Barbara Johnsen and Carlão of the Environment Secretary of Três Marias, and Sineide Montenegro and Fatima Sá of the Federal University of Alagoas (UFAL). The fieldwork was supported by World Fisheries Trust, the Federal University of São Carlos (UFSCar), and the Federation’s Peixes, Pessoas e Agua Project through CIDA funding, with counterpart support of field activities by the city of Três Marias and UFAL. Ana Thé was supported by FAPESP and the Post-graduate program in Ecology and Natural Resources of UFSCar.
- Berkes, F. (ed.) (1989). Common Property Resources: Ecology and Community-based Sustainable Development. Belhaven Press, London.Google Scholar
- Berkes, F. (2002). Cross-scale institutional linkages: Perspectives from the bottom up. In Ostrom, E. et al. (eds.), The drama of the commons. National Academy Press, Washington, pp. 293–321.Google Scholar
- Berkes, F. (2003). Alternatives to Conventional Management: Lessons from Small-scale Fisheries. Environments 31(1): 5–19.Google Scholar
- Berkes, F., Mahon, R., McConney, P., Pollnac, R., and Pomeroy, R. (2001). Managing Small-scale Fisheries: Alternative Directions and Methods. International Development Research Centre, Ottawa.Google Scholar
- Bromley, D. W. (ed.) (1992). Making the Commons Work: Theory, Practice, and Policy. ICS Press, San Francisco.Google Scholar
- Chambers, R. (1980). Rapid Rural Appraisal: Rationale and repertoire. IDS Discussion Paper (Brighton) (N.155).Google Scholar
- Diegues, A. C. (1995). Povos e Mares: leituras em sócio-antropologia marítima. Universidade de São Paulo, Brazil. NUPAUB, São Paulo.Google Scholar
- Felicidade, N., de Mendonca, S. A. T., Leme A. A., Goncalves, M. C., Martins, R. C., and Felix, S. A. (2001). Condições de vida e trabalho do pescador profissional da bacia do Alto/Médio São Francisco. In Felicidade, N., Martins, R. C., and Leme, A. A. (eds.), Uso e Gestao dos Recursos Hídricos no Brasil. RiMa, São Carlos, pp. 187–204.Google Scholar
- Foster, M., and Mathie, A. (2003). Situating asset-based community development in the international development context. [Online] URL: http://www.stfx.ca/institutes/coady/about_publications_new_situating.html (accessed: 07.07.2007).
- Godinho, H. P., and Godinho, A. L. (eds.) (2004). Águas, peixes e pescadores do São Francisco das Minas Gerais. Belo Horizonte, CNPq/PADCT, Editora PUC Minas.Google Scholar
- Gutberlet, J., and Seixas, C. S. (2003). Rapid socio-economic assessment of fishing communities at the São Francisco River in Brazil. Report prepared for World Fisheries Trust, Victoria, September 2003.Google Scholar
- Jiménez, L., Godinho, A. L., and Petrere Jr., M., (2004). As desovas de peixes no alto-médio São Francisco. In Godinho, H. P., and Godinho, A. L. (eds.) Águas, peixes e pescadores do São Francisco das Minas Gerais, Belo Horizonte, CNPq/PADCT, Editora PUC Minas, pp. 369–383.Google Scholar
- Kalikoski, D. C., Almudi, T., and Seixas, C. S. (2006). O estado da arte da gestão compartilhada e gestão comunitária da pesca no Brasil. Revista Jirau, 15: 14–16. ProVárzea, IBAMA. [Online] URL: http://www.ibama.gov.br/provarzea/index.php?id_menu=167 (accessed 07.07.2007).
- Kretzmann, J., and McKnight, J. (1993). Building Communities from the Inside Out. ACTA Publications, Chicago.Google Scholar
- Markey, S., Vodden, K., Ameyaw, S., Pierce, J., and Roseland, M. (2001). Understanding Community Capacity: Planning, Research and Methodology. In The Journal of Aboriginal Economic Development 2(1): 43–55.Google Scholar
- McCay, B. J., and Acheson, J. M. (eds.) (1987). The Question of the Commons: The Culture and Ecology of Communal Resources. University of Arizona Press, Tucson.Google Scholar
- McCully, P. (2001). Silenced River: The Ecology and Politics of Large Dams. Zed Books, New York.Google Scholar
- Montenegro, S. C. S., Nordi, N., and Marques, J. G. W. (2001). Contexto Cultural, Ecológico e Econômico da Produção e Ocupação dos Espaços de Pesca Pelos Pescadores de Pitu (Macrobrachium Carcinus) em um Trecho do Baixo São Francisco, Alagoas-Brasil. Interciência 26(11): 1–7.Google Scholar
- Nielsen, J. R., Degnbol, P., Viswanathan, K. K., and Ahmed, M. (2002). Fisheries Co-management—An Institutional Innovation. Perspective and Challenges Ahead. IIFET 2002 Proceeding. Paper 216.Google Scholar
- Ostrom, E. (1990). Governing the Commons. The Evolution of Institutions for Collective Action. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.Google Scholar
- Ostrom, E., and Schlager, E. (1996). The formation of Property Rights. In Hanna, S. S., Folke, C., and Mäler, K. (eds.), Rights of Nature: Ecological, Economic, Cultural, and Political Principles of Institutions for the Environment. Island Press, Washington, D.C., pp. 127–156.Google Scholar
- Ostrom, E., Dietz, T., Dolsak, N., Stern, P. C., Stonich, S., and Weber, E. U. (eds). (2002). The Dramas of the Commons. National Academy Press, Washington, DC.Google Scholar
- Sato, Y., and Godinho, A. L. (1988). Tucunaré—um peixe exótico na represa de Três Marias. In Coletânea de Resumos dos Encontros da Associação Mineira de Aqüicultura (AMA): 1982–1987. Brasília. CODVASF, pp. 92–93.Google Scholar
- Sato, Y., and Godinho, H. P. (2003). Migratory fishes of the São Francisco River. In: Carolsfeld, J., Harvey, B, Baer, A., and Ross, C. (eds.), Migratory Fishes of South America. Biology, Fisheries and Conservation Status. World Fisheries Trust, World Bank, and IDRC, pp. 199–232.Google Scholar
- Suassuna, J. (2005). Erros da Transposição. Fundação Joaquim Nabuco. [Online] URL: http://www.joaosuassuna.hpg.ig.com.br/. (accessed 07.07.2007).
- Thé, A. P. G. (1999). Etnoecologia e Produção Pesqueira dos Pescadores da represa de Três Marias, Minas Gerais. Dissertação de mestrado, PPG-ERN, UFSCar, São Carlos. SP. 122p. (Masters Thesis dissertation).Google Scholar
- Thé, A. P. G. (2003). Conhecimento Ecológico, Regras de uso e Manejo Local Dos Recursos Naturais Na Pesca Do Alto-Médio São Fransciso, MG. Tese de Doutorado, PPG-ERN, UFSCar, São Carlos. SP. 199p. (Doctorate Thesis dissertation).Google Scholar
- Thé, A. P. G., and Nordi, N. (2006). Common Property Resource System in a Fishery of the São Francisco River, Minas Gerais, Brazil. Human Ecology Review 13(1): 1–10.Google Scholar