ISSF has published its position statement in advance of the Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission (IATTC) 98th Meeting, which will be held virtually on August 23-27, 2021, and convened again in October 2021. The IATTC is responsible for the conservation and management of tuna and other marine resources in the eastern Pacific Ocean (EPO). The Commission will focus its August meeting solely on EPO tuna measures, and a subsequent meeting in mid-October will address other items on the Commission’s 2021 agenda.
“The global pandemic continues to stymie the IATTC and all tuna RFMOs in their ability to conduct meetings, negotiate solutions and find consensus,” said ISSF President Susan Jackson. “We acknowledge these challenges. But continued progress to ensure the long-term sustainability of tuna fisheries and ecosystems —nusing the best available scientific information — cannot wait for a ‘return to normalcy.’”
Reviewing Progress on the Path to Better Designed, Better Managed FADs
A recently updated blog reviews the efforts of ISSF — together with research, NGO, and industry partners — to ensure that FAD fisheries are sustainable for the long term. Topics explored include:
ISSF recently announced updates to several ISSF conservation measures to facilitate continuous improvements in the sustainability of global tuna fisheries, including those measures that impact longline tuna vessels and the use of fish aggregating devices (FADs).
“ISSF is guiding seafood companies and tuna fishers — with an expanded focus on longline fisheries — in taking additional, scientifically researched steps to protect sharks and other marine species, including through accessible education on up-to-date bycatch-mitigation best practices for skippers,” explains ISSF President Susan Jackson. “We also are furthering requirements for tuna fishers that use FADs to have clear policies for better managing and recovering them — and to use non-entangling, natural materials in FADs to reduce fishing’s impact on the ocean ecosystem.”
These latest conservation measure amendments aim to:
- Increase protections for vulnerable sharks, sea turtles, and seabirds and other non-target species in tuna fisheries
- Reduce fishing gear debris in and harm to marine environments
- Expand how bycatch-mitigation information is shared with fishers