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Study says global fish catch is higher than reported, but there is hope

David Agnew, MSC Director of Science and Standards, responds to a report about global fish catch.
Swirl of fish

I cannot over emphasise the importance of our oceans. Not only do they provide a vital source of protein, a playground for recreation and our first line of defence against climate change, it is estimated that some one billion people rely on the oceans for their livelihood.

A new analysis of global fish catch published this week by scientists at the University of British Colombia serves as a timely reminder of the contribution that fishing makes to food security and the potential it has to damage marine ecosystems if not managed effectively.

The findings make a strong case for the need for sustainability and good management of our oceans resources. Something that the MSC program is tackling across the world.

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Tackling illegal fishing one certificate at a time

Marine Stewardship Council Standards director David Agnew talks about the MSC's stance on the issue of Illegal, Unreported, and Unregulated (IUU) Fishing.
Coast Guard ship on horizon at dusk

Illegal, unregulated and unreported fishing (known as IUU fishing) is a major global problem which undermines the international community’s efforts to protect oceans for a sustainable future.

Estimated to be worth some $10-23.5 billion annually, IUU fishing damages the livelihoods of legitimate fishing operations and communities. In some parts of the world, total catches are estimated to be up to 40% higher than reported catches. Such levels of exploitation severely hamper the sustainable management of the marine ecosystem. IUU fishing covers a wide range of activities: non-compliance with regulations, non-reporting of catch, unregulated activity in high seas waters, and “fish piracy” – fishing without licences.

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Will there be a new ‘Gold rush’ on krill?

There have been warnings of overfishing of krill since the 1990s. This blog explains the legal, scientific and economic reasons why it won’t happen.
Close up of krill

Updated 7 January 2015.

There’s been a lot of talk lately about ‘What happens if the krill fishery suddenly grows out of control?’ What’s to stop a bunch of boats tooling up and charging down to the Antarctic and catching all of the krill?

People have been warning of a massive increase in the krill fishery since the 1990s and it still hasn’t happened for two very good reasons. Over the course of this blog, I want to explain the legal and scientific reasons why it won’t happen and also the economic reasons why this idea of krill suddenly getting huge fishing pressure is simply not plausible.

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