EnergyScapes: Managing ENERGY TRANSITION Global Environmental Recovery

High Seas Plunder of Fish Stocks Continues

Skipjack tuna fill a net in an underwater view of operations between two Philippine vessels fishing on the high seas in 2012. The vessels were using a common technique called purse seining that encircles whole schools of targeted fish, as well as any other marine life that is present. Photo credit: Alex Hofford/Greenpeace.

Skipjack tuna fill a net in an underwater view of operations between two Philippine vessels fishing on the high seas in 2012. The vessels were using a common technique called purse seining that encircles whole schools of targeted fish, as well as any other marine life that is present. Photo credit: Alex Hofford/Greenpeace.

Close the high seas to fishing and turn it into “a fish bank for the world.” After depleting fish stocks close to the coasts, many countries have taken to fishing in the high seas. This contributes to overexploitation of commercial fish species and threatens nontargeted species with habitat destruction, by-catch, and other problems. Currently, high-seas catches are worth about $16 billion annually — roughly 15 percent of the global catch’s annual worth of $109 billion.

The world community has been trying to reduce the common property problem by encouraging the formation of Regional Fisheries Management Organizations (RFMOs). However, most analysts have come to the conclusion that many RFMOs have not been successful. Two-thirds of the stocks with known status being managed by RFMOs were depleted or overfished, 

The fishing vessel Yin Yuan sails in international waters off Japan in May 2014. The U.S. Coast Guard intercepted the vessel for illegal fishing activities, including the use of prohibited drift nets, which "indiscriminately kills massive amounts of fish and other marine life such as whales, sea-birds, sharks and turtles by means of enormous nets suspended for miles in open water," according to a U.S. Coast Guard press release. Drift netting and other destructive fishing practices are common on the high seas. The China Coast Guard took custody of the ship. Photo credit: U.S. Coast Guard.

The fishing vessel Yin Yuan sails in international waters off Japan in May 2014. The U.S. Coast Guard intercepted the vessel for illegal fishing activities, including the use of prohibited drift nets, which “indiscriminately kills massive amounts of fish and other marine life such as whales, sea-birds, sharks and turtles by means of enormous nets suspended for miles in open water,” according to a U.S. Coast Guard press release. Drift netting and other destructive fishing practices are common on the high seas. The China Coast Guard took custody of the ship. Photo credit: U.S. Coast Guard.

The only legislation governing fishing in the high seas is the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, an international agreement that recognizes all states’ right to freely fish the high sees, but lays down only general principals for conservation and management.

A team of international fisheries experts examined catch data for 2000 to 2010 from the Sea Around Us global catch database and landings data for 1950 to 2010 from the UN Food and Agriculture Organization. Just 19 out of the 1,406 targeted species were fished exclusively from the high seas. 802 were caught only within EEZs and 585 “straddling species,” as the study calls them, were fished from both the high seas and EEZs. Less than 0.01 percent of the quantity and value of commercial fish come from catch taken exclusively in the high seas

Read more: http://news.mongabay.com/2015/0522-sekar-close-high-seas-fishing.html#ixzz3bUxhwVjp

 

 

Tagged as: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Categorised in: Compliance and Standards, Fisheries and Aquaculture, Global Change and Sustainability, International Conventions, Maritime Security

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

May 2015
M T W T F S S
« Mar   Jun »
 123
45678910
11121314151617
18192021222324
25262728293031
%d bloggers like this: