Monday, December 2, 2013

Another critical meeting for bluefin (and other kinds of) tuna

Well, ICCAT may have done something good for Atlantic bluefin tuna last week, but now something has to be done about Pacific bluefin and several other species - and the problem there is that many countries, TOO many countries, are overfishing Pacific bluefin.  And there's a meeting this week, right now, addressing (or more likely ignoring) the eventual fate of the Pacific tunas.

Showdown looms for lucrative tuna industry
"A record 2.65 million tonnes of tuna was hauled from the Pacific last year, accounting for 60 percent of the global catch, with most of the fishing conducted by so-called "distant water" fleets from as far afield as Europe, the United States, China, Korea and Taiwan. 
Island nations, many of which rely on tuna for a significant portion of their income, fear stocks are becoming unsustainable and want action at the December 2-6 meeting of the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission (WCPFC) in Cairns. 
"If distant water nations support sustainability of the resource, then they need to commit to a 30 percent reduction in catches," Marshall Islands fisheries director Glen Joseph said. 
"It's not a question of should they do it or not -- they have to do it or face the consequences."
And the main consequence to be worried about is not being able to catch bluefin tuna at all, because there won't be enough of them to make it economically worthwhile to try to catch them.

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