Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Collapse of Fish Stocks

An investigation of the fishing industry in the southern Pacific by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists shows how the fate of the jack mackerel may foretell the progressive collapse of fish stocks in all oceans.

From 2006 to 2011, scientists estimate, jack mackerel stock declined 63 per cent.

The South Pacific Regional Fisheries Management Organisation, formed in 2006 at the initiative of Australia and New Zealand along with Chile, has endeavoured without much success to date to protect fish, particularly jack mackerel. They have concluded that an annual catch beyond 520,000 tonnes will further deplete jack mackerel stocks

Industrial fishing interests are resistant to the implementation of a quota system. Some have thumbed their nose at the science and research that highlights the gravity of the issue.

Reporters and staff from the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists working with the Chilean investigative journalism centre Ciper, have traced how eight groups with a near monopoly on the industry have pressured the Chilean government to set quotas above scientific advice.

The troubling reality is that voluntary restraints have not worked in protecting fish stocks and that a binding convention is required to ensure the jack mackerel does not disappear from the southern seas.

1 comment:

  1. The Grand Banks used to support the greatest cod fishery on the planet. No more... They fished it to commercial extinction 20 years ago!

    The story is always the same. Scientists give their advice. Fishing companies say that's not enough. The media confuses the issue instead of analysing it. The politician's cave into the fishing industry...