Understanding Alaska: Fisheries

The commercial salmon fishery is the most economically important of Alaska's many fisheries, employing thousands in harvesting and processing during the summer season and providing the main economic driver for many Alaskan communities. However, it has come under increasing pressure during the last decade from deteriorating market conditions that have reduced prices and from problems inherent in the limited entry system used to control and allocate the harvest. It is now widely recognized that the commercial salmon fishery is facing a crisis that must be addressed quickly or the fishery, and many of the communities that depend upon it, may disappear. Listed below are a series of reports and workshops investigating various aspects of this crisis and evaluating potential solutions for dealing with the decline in the market and with the methods currently used by the state to manage and allocate fisheries.