Pacific nations agree to cut bluefin tuna catches

Sep 05, 2013
Fishmongers inspect bluefin tuna at Tokyo's Tsukiji fish market on January 5, 2013. Asia-Pacific fishing nations and territories agreed on Thursday to cut catches of young bluefin tuna by 15%, with an agreement environmentalists said would not stop overfishing.

Asia-Pacific fishing nations and territories agreed on Thursday to cut catches of young bluefin tuna by 15 percent, with an agreement environmentalists said would not stop overfishing.

Nine economies, including the United States, China, South Korea and Taiwan, concluded a four-day meeting of the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission (WCPFC) in Fukuoka, western Japan.

The participants agreed to reduce the amount of bluefin tuna aged three years or younger in 2014 by 15 percent of the average between 2002 and 2004, a Japanese fisheries agency official said.

The United States had proposed a 25-percent reduction, but a majority of participants, concerned about the impact on local fishing industries, agreed on the 15-percent cut proposed by Japan, the official said.

The accord will be endorsed at the commission's annual assembly in December in Australia, the official added.

Greenpeace immediately denounced the reduction, saying only a total ban on catching bluefin tuna—at least until a sign of clear recovery of the species can be confirmed—was enough.

Greenpeace also called on Japan—the world's biggest consumer of tuna—to take the lead in adopting effective measures "to assure the of fishing in the Pacific".

Environmentalists say industrial-scale fishing that takes large amounts of young tuna from the ocean before they are old enough to breed is destroying the population of a fish highly-prized in Japan's sushi restaurants.

The WCPFC was formed in 2004 based on a UN treaty to conserve and manage tuna and other highly migratory fish stocks across the western and central areas of the Pacific.

Explore further: Time 'running out' to save tuna stocks

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Time 'running out' to save tuna stocks

Aug 26, 2013

Time is running out to save some species of tuna from overfishing, environmental groups warned Monday, calling for Japan to take the lead in reducing the global catch.

Big nations block curbs on tuna overfishing

Dec 06, 2012

Efforts to curb overfishing of tuna in the Pacific were blocked by big countries that refused to cut their catch at a meeting of tuna-fishing nations in the Asia-Pacific, delegates said Thursday.

Overfishing threatens Pacific tuna

Dec 02, 2012

Asia-Pacific fishing experts on Sunday warned against depleting tuna stocks, saying the region needs to reduce its catch of the vulnerable bigeye species by 30 percent.

Greenpeace takes on tuna fishing

Apr 23, 2008

Greenpeace says it confronted a U.S. tuna boat in the South Pacific this week as part of an effort to fight overfishing by commercial fishing fleets.

Recommended for you

Sharks contain more pollutants than polar bears

21 hours ago

The polar bear is known for having alarmingly high concentrations of PCB and other pollutants. But researchers have discovered that Greenland sharks store even more of these contaminants in their bodies.

Moth study suggests hidden climate change impacts

Apr 15, 2014

A 32-year study of subarctic forest moths in Finnish Lapland suggests that scientists may be underestimating the impacts of climate change on animals and plants because much of the harm is hidden from view.

User comments : 1

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

antialias_physorg
5 / 5 (1) Sep 05, 2013
Not good, but better than nothing. At the very least it gives a little more time for more stringent reductions (if anyone cares to stick to the accord, that is)

While a reduction will impact fisheries the lessend supply will no doubt drive up prices. So the total impact shouldn't be that severe (they'll make roughly the same money at 15% decreased effort).

More news stories

Tech giants look to skies to spread Internet

The shortest path to the Internet for some remote corners of the world may be through the skies. That is the message from US tech giants seeking to spread the online gospel to hard-to-reach regions.

Patent talk: Google sharpens contact lens vision

(Phys.org) —A report from Patent Bolt brings us one step closer to what Google may have in mind in developing smart contact lenses. According to the discussion Google is interested in the concept of contact ...

Wireless industry makes anti-theft commitment

A trade group for wireless providers said Tuesday that the biggest mobile device manufacturers and carriers will soon put anti-theft tools on the gadgets to try to deter rampant smartphone theft.