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Comprehensive Assessment of Fishery Compliance Risks (RBC part III)

February 9, 2015
The risk management process for Australian Commonwealth fisheries

The risk management process for Australian Commonwealth fisheries

Following on my last post in this series on the importance of prioritizing “compliance” over “enforcement”, I’ll continue in this post by covering the next “big idea” I had stumbled upon while researching risk-base compliance (RBC) programs for fisheries: comprehensive assessments of fishery compliance risks.

In this respect, I think Australia, and reportedly New Zealand, are quite unique when it comes to how they manage compliance issues in their fisheries. Read more…

Report of the BehavFish Workshop

February 5, 2015

The workshop report from the BehavFish Workshop is now available. The workshop explored how behavioral economics might be applied to fisheries management for improved outcomes. The document gives a nice overview of this emerging field of thought and study, outlines the key points of discussion, and offers a few ideas for future research.

If you’d like to know more about the participants, funding, or see a brief presentation on compliance, check out my original post on the workshop here.

Comments to the Presidential Task for on IUU Fishing and Seafood Fraud

January 26, 2015

For those who are interested, several of my colleagues at MSU – Mark Axelrod, John Spink, and Meredith Gore – and I put together a comment document that we submitted to the Presidential Task Force on IUU Fishing and Seafood Fraud. This was in relation to the Task Force’s request for comments on how best to implement its recent recommendations on IUU fishing and seafood fraud.

The document you can read above. In general, the advice related to how to build state-capacity in the developing world to reduce illegal fishing and to improve the U.S.’s trade sanction system for countries engaging in illegal fishing.

World Parks Congress: 30% no-take MPA coverage worldwide

January 19, 2015
tags:
Only 2.1% of the world’s oceans are protected in marine protected areas, and globally only 0.8% are protected strongly in no-take marine reserves

Only 2.1% of the world’s oceans are protected in marine protected areas, and globally only 0.8% are protected strongly in no-take marine reserves. From MPAtlas.

I’m catching up on my reading of the November/December issue of MPA News, a newsletter that I highly recommend. The big headline is what’s being called “The Promise of Sydney”, which among other things, calls for 30% of the ocean to be protected under no-take marine reserves.

MPA News provides some context to this ambitious call:

The goal of 30% no-take coverage amounts to a rebuke of the Convention on Biological Diversity’s Aichi Target 11, which was set in 2010. Aichi Target 11 calls for just 10% of marine areas to be conserved in MPAs or other effective area-based conservation measures by 2020. Under that target, the MPAs also don’t need to be no-take (MPA News 12:3). The WPC’s 30% no-take goal is ambitious. Current no-take coverage still amounts to less than 1% of the world ocean. (Notably the Promise of Sydney sets no deadline for meeting the 30% target.)  That being said, it reinforces a goal set at the last World Parks Congress, held in 2003 in Durban, South Africa, where participants recommended that 20-30% of the world’s oceans be placed in no-take areas. (In Sydney, the 30% no-take figure was somewhat of a midway point between Aichi Target 11, on the low end of MPA coverage goals, and calls for “Nature Needs Half” on the high end. The latter is a campaign among several conservation NGOs to protect at least half of the world ecosystem as wild nature space — http://www.natureneedshalf.org.)

I find this a fascinating idea, but struggle to imagine the technological and budgetary shifts that would need to occur to ensure that such large areas are truly protected.

Prison Labor in Thai Fisheries

January 16, 2015

16b327bAlberto Romero-Bermo, Director of Fisheries & Sustainability at Lumar Seafood International, has put up a really nice blog on LinkedIn. It covers the Thai government’s decision to pilot the use of prison labor to solve its slave labor problem. Alberto points out that this is quite likely no better, and suggests that seafood companies should avoid buying prison labor-supported fisheries products.

Read more…

Salvaging the Global Fishing Watch Project

January 16, 2015

There’s a very good blog by Trevor Downing up at WWF-UK on the weaknesses of Google’s big data project, Global Fishing Watch Project, as a way to combat illegal fishing. Here are a few key excerpts.

Very limited AIS deployment without an enforcement regime:

The global context of the project is flawed, perhaps more so than has been noted to date. There are no multilateral governance measures in force for AIS on fishing vessels, not even on the larger size ranges of 300GT and above where AIS is mandated on cargo vessels. The application of the AIS requirements in Regulation 19 of SOLAS Chapter V to fishing vessels is entirely at the behest of the flag state. This also means that none of the global enforcement frameworks for AIS, such as Port State Control, currently exists for fishing vessels. The IMO is unlikely to visit the subject of AIS on fishing vessels until the Cape Town Agreement enters into force.

Read more…

Counter-Productive Illegal Fishing Policies?

January 14, 2015

There’s a good article out today at The Guardian on Indonesia’s recently imposed policies to stop illegal fishing in its waters. I’ve been following this with some fascination after the Indonesian Navy rather dramatically blew up two illegal fishing vessels (great photos at the link).

Read more…