The International Seafood Sustainability Foundation (ISSF) has published its position statement in advance of the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission’s (WCPFC) annual meeting from November 29 to December 7, 2021, which will take place virtually. ISSF is advocating for continued strong protections for bigeye, skipjack and yellowfin tuna stocks; upgraded requirements related to the management and use of fish aggregating devices (FADs); accelerated development of harvest strategies; and more.
“The current tuna conservation measure that protects tropical tuna stocks in the region expires in February 2022, and we agree with the WCPFC Scientific Committee that these protections must remain in place to ensure that fishing mortality does not increase,” said ISSF President Susan Jackson. “These protections are necessary until the Commission adopts comprehensive harvest strategies, including appropriate target reference points. The WCPFC’s annual meeting must adopt a new and robust tuna conservation measure to prevent the possibility of overexploitation while harvest strategies are put in place.”Read about our top #sustainable #fishing priorities for the #WCPFC annual meeting next week. Click To Tweet
Jackson added, “Additionally, WCPFC must act and adopt a work plan for transitioning to FADs without nets and made primarily with biodegradable materials; make progress on electronic monitoring, as the pandemic has severely impacted observer coverage; and implement stronger rules for at-sea transshipment to guard against illegal fishing among the growing number of high seas transshipment events in the region.”
Read the full WCPFC Position Statement on the new ISSF website.
ISSF is committed to advocating for science-based approaches, policies and conservation measures to advance tuna fisheries sustainability. Here are ISSF’s Global Priorities for four Tuna RFMOs — the Indian Ocean Tuna Commission (IOTC), the Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission (IATTC), the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT) and the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission (WCPFC):