NOAA FISHERIES AND WORLD PARTNERS APPRAISE SUCCESSES IN INTERNATIONAL
FISHERIES MANAGEMENT FOR WORLD SUMMIT
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric
Administration’s (NOAA) National Marine Fisheries Service (NOAA
Fisheries) and partner countries in international fisheries management
have made significant progress in the protection, rational use and development
of the world’s marine life since the 1992 Earth Summit in Rio de
Among the success stories by
NOAA, the U.S. State Department and
international partners are:
- The first
binding international agreement dedicated exclusively to the protection
of sea turtles came into force in 2001.
agrees to implement broad measures for the conservation of sea turtles,
including the prohibition on intentional take (except for subsistence
as allowed under the convention), domestic or international sale,
and the conservation and restoration of habitat and nesting beaches,
the promotion of efforts to enhance sea turtle populations, the reduction
of by-catch in the course of fishing activities and the use of turtle
excluder devices (TEDS) with certain allowances for exceptions.
are currently parties to this convention.
- The first
agreement on international dolphin conservation during Eastern Tropical
Pacific tuna fishing in 1999.
details conservative species/stock specific annual dolphin mortality
limits and includes additional protection for other living marine
resources, to achieve an ecosystem approach to management of the fishery.
also establishes a scientific advisory board and an international
review panel to monitor compliance with the dolphin protection measures,
rules regarding on-board observers and elements of an international
have signed this agreement.
of the United Nations international fish stocks agreement in 1995.
instrument for achieving sustainable fisheries around the globe, it
sets out principles for the conservation of straddling and highly
migratory fish stocks. It introduces new principles and concepts to
fisheries management including the precautionary approach, vessel
monitoring systems, compatibility of conservation and management measures,
transparency of activities within subregional and regional fishery
management organizations, compliance with nonmember states with fishery
management organizations’ measures, high seas boarding and inspection,
port state measures, and data collection and sharing standards.
states and entities have signed this agreement.
- Signing of
agreement to promote compliance with international conservation and
management measures by fishing vessels on the high seas in 1993.
reaffirms the provisions of the United Nations Convention on the Law
of the Sea that flag states must exercise effective control over their
vessels fishing on the high seas. It elaborates this obligation by
requiring that all such vessels be licensed to conduct such fishing,
that the licenses by conditioned on the vessel abiding by internationally-agreed
conservation and management measures, and sets up the Food and Agriculture
Organization (FAO) of the United Nations as an archive and clearing
house for information on fishing vessels, particularly those that
have broken applicable rules and been punished.
nations have signed this agreement.
of the Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries in 1995 - and development
of four international plans of action:
incidental catch of seabirds in longline fisheries.
conservation and management of sharks.
of fishing capacity.
deter and eliminate illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing.
of the Code of Conduct was discussed at the 1992 Rio Summit. It was
developed as a set of principles and international standards of behavior
for responsible fishing practices. It was adopted by the Twenty-eighth
session of the FAO Conference on Oct. 31, 1995. The Code of Conduct
recognizes all aspects of fisheries, including economical, social
biological and environmental. It also recognizes the interests of
users of the resource while providing for the effective conservation,
management and development of living aquatic resources.
was adopted by consensus by the 160-members of the Food and Agricultural
Organization of the United Nations.
- First agreement
to apply conservation and management of highly migratory fish stocks
in the Western and Central Pacific Ocean in 2000.
convention was the first to be signed that was purposefully modeled
after the United Nationals Fish Stock Agreement. It also features
the key principles of precautionary approach, compatibility, minimum
standards of data collection and sharing, and transparency. It is
intended to apply a conservation and management regime to the last
significant unmanaged tuna resource, one currently worth $1.5—$2
billion per year
has been signed by 25 states. It goes into effect September 2003,
if it contains at least 13 signers.
“As the world looks forward
to the World Summit on Sustainable Development of our oceans, it is important
to commend the meaningful and substantive contributions that have been
made on behalf of our world’s marine environment since the Rio summit
in 1992,” said retired Navy Vice Admiral Conrad C. Launtebaucher,
Jr., Ph. D., commerce undersecretary for oceans and atmosphere and NOAA
administrator. “Our ultimate goal is to work with our international
fishing nation partners to achieve sustainable marine fisheries for future
At the 1992 Earth Summit in
Rio de Janeiro, the international community adopted Agenda 21 (Chapter
17 of the agenda addresses marine fisheries sustainable development),
a global program of action for achieving sustainable development.
The 10-year follow-up to Rio,
the World Summit for Sustainable Development (WSSD) in Johannesburg, South
Africa, is an opportunity for governments and organizations to assess
the progress made since then, and to develop new partnerships and initiatives
to implement Agenda 21.
Details about NOAA’s
work on sustainable development are available at http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/sfa/international/WSSD.htm.
NOAA Fisheries is dedicated to protecting and preserving our nation's
living marine resources through scientific research, management, enforcement,
and the conservation of marine mammals and other protected marine species
and their habitat. To learn more about NOAA Fisheries, please visit http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov.