Preventing the Earth from warming more than 1.5C (2.7F) above pre-industrial levels would add millions of tonnes to global fish catches, experts have said.

Scientists used computer simulations to assess the impact of different climate-change scenarios on global fisheries.

They found that compared with a 3.5C (6.3F) rise, a warming of no more than 1.5C would net an extra six million tonnes of fish per year.

An ideal target of 1.5C was set by the Paris Agreement which came into force last month and set a goal of pegging warming to "well below" 2C (3.6F).

As things stand, the combined pledges made by the 195 countries signing up to the deal would result in warming of up to 3.5C.

The new research suggests that if global warming could be kept down to 1.5C, it would have a major impact on the oceans, especially in tropical regions.

Lead author Dr William Cheung, from the University of British Columbia, Canada, said: "The benefits for vulnerable tropical areas is a strong reason why 1.5C is an important target to meet.

"Countries in these sensitive regions are highly dependent on fisheries for food and livelihood but all countries will be impacted as the seafood supply chain is now highly globalised."

The researchers, whose results are reported in the journal Science, found that for every degree Celsius (1.8F) decrease in global warming, potential fish catches could be boosted by more than three million tonnes per year.

Previous research has shown that today's global fish catch amounts to roughly 109 million tonnes.

Bev O'Kane, fisheries scientist at the Marine Conservation Society, said: "The difference between our world heating by 1.5 degrees and 3.5 degrees is stark. It is therefore crucial that commitments to limit temperature rise are followed through.

"Reduced catches and changes of species found in world oceans will most keenly affect developing nations with coastal communities who depend on fishing, but given that the majority of our seafood in the UK is now imported, with bigger changes to global oceans we can expect fewer fish catches and more expensive seafood options in the future."