Overfishing on the menu of Istanbul conference

Nov 11, 2011
Fishmongers cut frozen bluefin tuna in Tokyo in March 2011. Hundreds of representatives of countries involved in bluefin tuna fishing, international organisations and NGOs met here Friday on how to improve catch controls and protect endangered species.

Hundreds of representatives of countries involved in bluefin tuna fishing, international organisations and NGOs met here Friday on how to improve catch controls and protect endangered species.

A report released last month warned that more than twice as many tonnes of were sold last year compared with official catch records for this threatened species.

This "bluefin gap" occurred despite enhanced reporting and enforcement measures introduced in 2008 by the 48-member International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT), which sets annual quotas by country, it said.

Trade figures showed that real catches of bluefin in 2009 and 2010 totalled more than 70,500 tonnes, twice ICCAT's tally for those two years, according to the report compiled by the Washington-based Pew .

In 2010, the target quota -- 12,900 tonnes for fish caught in the Mediterranean and Northeastern Atlantic -- fell for the first time within the panel's recommended range.

But the new report, released ahead of the nine-day ICCAT meeting in Istanbul which is attended by delegates from member countries, implies the industry has circumvented the catch limits and tougher compliance measures.

"The follow-up of catches is a key issue," ICCAT executive secretary Driss Meski told AFP on Friday.

"We are thinking about how to set up an that will follow the product from catch to consumer. We are doing a feasibility study and we will submit it."

ICCAT will also propose how to better protect other species, said a delegate who would not be named.

"We're talking about catch quotas or technical measures like a cap on the number of boats. And generalluy speaking we're following scientific recommendations," he added.

Meski confirmed that the parties involved in the Istanbul talks will discuss quotas.

The delegate said he also expected proposals on how to protect sharks which ICCAT sees as collateral victims of tuna fishing.

Explore further: PacifiCorp Energy pleads guilty in bird deaths

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Far more bluefin sold than reported caught: report

Oct 18, 2011

More than twice as many tonnes of Atlantic bluefin tuna were sold last year compared with official catch records for this threatened species, according to a report released on Tuesday.

Battle lines emerge in bluefin tuna battle

Nov 18, 2010

A meeting on the fate of the Atlantic bluefin tuna got into its stride on Thursday as Europe mulled a call for a modest cut in catches and Japan said it would propose a fishing ban on nations that cheat.

Progress made on protecting sharks, groups say

Nov 28, 2010

(AP) -- An international conservation conference in Paris made progress Saturday on protecting sharks but didn't do anything to save the Atlantic bluefin tuna, which has been severely overfished to feed the ...

Japan leading charge against bluefin ban

Mar 17, 2010

(AP) -- Opposition grew Wednesday against a proposal to ban the export of Atlantic bluefin tuna, with several Arab countries joining Japan in arguing it would hurt poor fishing nations and was not supported ...

EU: bluefin tuna catches to be reduced

Nov 16, 2009

(AP) -- The EU Commission says over 45 countries who catch tuna have agreed to cut catches of the threatened Atlantic bluefin tuna next year.

Overfishing threatens European bluefin tuna

Nov 07, 2008

Bluefin tuna disappeared from Danish waters in the 1960s. Now the species could become depleted throughout the northeast Atlantic and Mediterranean, according to analyses by the Technical University of Denmark (DTU Aqua) ...

Recommended for you

Study finds tropical fish moving into temperate waters

15 hours ago

Tropical herbivorous fish are beginning to expand their range into temperate waters – likely as a result of climate change – and a new international study documents the dramatic impact of the intrusion ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.