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Sea Around Us project newsletter, issue 37, September/October 2006 Forrest, Robyn; Sea Around Us Project Sep 30, 2006

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SSSS Seeee e aaaa a     AAAA Arrrr r ouououou ounnnn ndddd d     UUUU Ussss sThe Sea Around Us Project NewsletterIssue 37 – September/October 2006The Sea Around Usproject, funded bythe Pew CharitableTrusts in Philadelphia, andhosted by the FisheriesCentre, started in mid1999. Its goal was - andstill is - to investigate theimpact of fisheries onmarine ecosystems, andto propose policies tomitigate these impacts.One early product of theproject, which had a largeimpact on both fisheriesresearch and internationalpolicy, was thedemonstration that theworld catch, rather thanincreasing through the1990s, had in fact beendecreasing since the late1980s, the latter trend,however, having beenmasked by over-reportingof catches (for internal,political reasons) fromChina (Watson and Pauly2001). This decliningtrend is explained byFigure 1, whichdocuments that globally,fisheries have beeninvolved in the serialdepletion of the stocksthey exploit.Although conceived as aglobal activity, the projectfirst emphasized the data-rich North Atlantic as atest bed for developing itsvarious approaches, whichrely on mapping of catchdata and indicators ofecosystem health (seee.g., Pauly and Watson2005) derived from theanalysis of long catch timeseries data, ranging atleast from 1950 to thepresent (Watson et al.2004). Initialachievements includedmapping the decline,throughout the NorthAtlantic basin, of high-trophic level fishes from1900 to the present(Christensen et al. 2003).Also, we presentedcompelling evidence ofchange in the functioningof the North Atlanticecosystems, summarizedin a book authored byPauly and Maclean (2003),but which drew on work byall Sea Around Us projectmembers.The Central and SouthAtlantic were the next areasto be tackled, with someemphasis on the distant-water fleet off West Africa,and culminating in a majorconference in Dakar, Senegal,in 2002 (Chavance et al.2004). The project thenworked on the North Pacific,Antarctica, and themultiplicity of tropical Indo-Pacific fisheries (much of thispublished first in FisheriesCentre Research Reports,available fromwww.fisheries.ubc.ca/publications/reports/fcrr.php),after which all our majorcontributions became basedon global analyses. Exampleare our global estimates offuel consumption by fishingfleets (Tyedmers et al. 2005),of the catches of small-scalefisheries (Chuenpagdee et al.2006), and of governmentsubsidies to fisheries(Sumaila and Pauly 2006).Recalling the goals of theSea Around Us project:documenting, communicatingand mitigating fisheries impactson marine ecosystemsby Daniel PaulyContinued on page 2 - GoalsPage 2Sea Around Us – September/October 2006The Sea Around Us project newsletter ispublished by the  FisheriesCentre at the Univer-sity of British Co-lumbia. Includedwith the FisheriesCentre’s newsletterFishBytes,six is-sues of this news-letter are publishedannually. Subscrip-tions are free of charge.Our mailing address is: UBC Fisheries Cen-tre, Aquatic Ecosystems Research Laboratory,2202 Main Mall, Vancouver, British Colum-bia, Canada, V6T 1Z4. Our fax number is(604) 822-8934, and our email address isSeaNotes@fisheries.ubc.ca. All queries (in-cluding reprint requests), subscription re-quests, and address changes should be ad-dressed to Robyn Forrest, Sea Around UsNewsletter Editor.The Sea Around Us website may be foundat saup.fisheries.ubc.ca and contains up-to-date information on the project.The Sea Around Us project is a Fisheries Centre partner-ship with the Pew Charitable Trusts of Philadelphia,USA. The Trusts support nonprofit activities in the areasof culture, education, the environment, health and human serv-ices, public policy and religion. Based in Philadelphia, theTrusts make strategic investments to help organisations andcitizens develop practical solutions to difficult problems. In2000, with approximately $4.8 billion in assets, the Trustscommitted over $235 million to 302 nonprofit organisations. ISSN 1713-5214   Sea Around Us (ONLINE)One of the reasons why thedestruction of marine life byheavily subsidized fishing fleetscould go as far as it did isbecause the public at largeretained, until recently, aromantic image of fishers andfisheries. On the other hand, theenvironmental NGOs whichcould have corrected this benignview of fisheries, largelydepended, for their analyses, onfisheries data from governmentlaboratories, mainly assembledand pertinent to the tactical(year-to-year) management ofindustrial fleets, and generallyuseless for demonstrating theecosystem impact of fisheries.The Sea Around Us project wasdesigned to counter this, itspurpose being the developmentof what may be called ‘fisheriesconservation science’, gearedtoward maintaining ecosystemconfigurations likely to allow forsustainable fisheries, and not tothe largely unsustainablefisheries that we have now(Pauly et al. 2002). This is also thegoal, incidentally of most NGOsworking on fisheries andecosystems, even if the fishingindustry doesn’t see it.To achieve its purpose, the SeaAround Us project musttherefore pursue a dual strategyof contributing to the technicalpeer-reviewed literature, tomaintain the scientific credibilityof its members, and reaching outto the members of theenvironmental NGO communityand to the public at large, using arange of products (magazineand newspapers articles, publiclectures, etc.) suited for variousaudiences. One major tool is ourwebsite (www.seaaroundus.org),and hence the emphasis on thisaspect of our work, and on maps,which can communicatecomplex information even to layaudiences (see Watson et al.2005).Our website presents, for eachmaritime country of the world(and also for 64 Large MarineEcosystems) what we believeare key information on themarine fisheries and ecosystemsof the world. The information weprovide could be far moredetailed for some developedcountries. However, this wouldleave most developing countriesbehind, which would seeminappropriate, given that it isfish caught along the coasts of,or exported from, developingcountries which now largelysupply markets in developedcountries (Alder and Sumaila2004).Thus, the Sea Around Usproject, now mature, willcontinue to exploit its globalniche, i.e., concentrate onglobal fisheries issues. We callon interested colleagues tohelp us improve the coverageof their countries, or region ofinterest.ReferencesAlder, J. and U.R. Sumaila.2004. Western Africa: a fishbasket of Europe past andpresent. Journal of Environ-ment and Development13(2),156-178.Chavance, P., M. Ba, D.Gascuel, M. Vakily et D.Pauly (Editors). 2004.Pêcheries maritimes,écosystèmes et sociétés enAfrique de l’Ouest : undemi-siècle dechangement. Actes dusymposium international,Dakar - Sénégal, 24-28 juin2002. Office des publica-tions officielles descommunautésEuropéennes, XXXVI,collection des rapports derecherche halieutique ACP-UE 15, 532 p. + Appendi-ces. [Article in English andFrench]Goals - Continued from page 1Continued on page 3 - GoalsThe SeaAround Usproject mustthereforepursue a dualstrategy ofcontributingto thetechnicalpeer-reviewedliterature [...]Page 3 Sea Around Us – September/October 2006Christensen, V., S. Guénette, J.Heymans, C. Walters R.Watson, D. Zeller and D.Pauly. 2003. Hundred yeardecline of North Atlanticpredatory fishes. Fish andFisheries 4(1), 1-24.Chuenpagdee, R, L. Liguori,M.L.D. Palomares and D.Pauly. 2006. Bottom-Up,Global Estimates of Small-Scale Marine FisheriesCatches. Fisheries CentreResearch Report, 14(8), 112 p.Pauly, D. and J. Maclean. 2003.In a Perfect Ocean: fisheriesand ecosystem in the NorthAtlantic. Island Press,Washington, D.C. 175 pp.Pauly, D. and R. Watson. 2005.Background and interpreta-tion of the ‘Marine TrophicIndex’ as a measure ofbiodiversity. PhilosophicalTransactions of the RoyalSociety: Biological Sciences360, 415-423.Pauly, D., V. Christensen, S.Guénette, T. Pitcher, U.R.Sumaila, C.  Walters, R.Watson, R. and D. Zeller.2002. Towards sustainabilityin world fisheries. Nature418, 689-695.Sumaila, U.R. and D. Pauly.(Editors.), 2006. Catchingmore bait: a bottom-up re-estimation of global fisheriessubsidies. Fisheries CentreResearch Reports 14(6), 114p.Tyedmers, P., R. Watson and D.Pauly. 2005. Fueling globalfishing fleets. AMBIO: aJournal of the HumanEnvironment 34(8), 635-638.Goals - Continued from page 2Figure 1. Time series of the composition of global marine fisheries catch according to the status of the stocks making up thatcatch, 1950-2003. This status (underdeveloped: 0-10%; developing: 10-50%; fully exploited: above 50% of maximum;overexploited: 50-10 %; and crashed: 10-0%) is defined with respect to the highest catch of each time series (see insert forexample), representing one stock, usually a species, within one of 18 FAO statistical areas covering the world ocean. Moreelaborate, but similar graphs were developed by FAO to generalize regional and global trends. Dr. Rainer Froese, of KielUniversity, simplified these graphs to their present form, which can be used for predictive purposes (e.g., by projecting intothe future the border line between ‘overexploited’ and ‘crashed’; see Worm et al. 2006).Worm, B., E. B. Barbier, N.Beaumont, E. Duffy, C. Folke,B.S. Halpern, J.B.C. Jackson,H.K Lotze, F. Micheli, S.R.Palumbi, E. Sala, K.A. Selkoe,J.J. Stachowicz and R.Watson. 2006. Science,  314(5800), 787–790.Watson, R. and D. Pauly. 2001.Systematic distortions inworld fisheries catch trends.Nature 414, 534-536.Watson, R., J. Alder, A.Kitchingman and D. Pauly.2005. Catching someneeded attention. MarinePolicy 29(3), 281-284.Watson, R., A. Kitchingman, A.,Gelchu and D. Pauly. 2004.Mapping global fisheries:sharpening our focus. Fishand Fisheries 5, 168-177.[...] andreaching outto themembers oftheenvironmentalNGOcommunityand to thepublic atlarge.Page 4Sea Around Us – September/October 2006Publications Mail Agreement No: 41104508Country Profiles: a new SeaAround Us web productby Ganapathiraju Pramod and Ahmed KhanClicking ‘Countries’ EEZ’ onthe Sea Around Uswebsitewww.seaaroundus.org) leads todetailed information about thefisheries and related informationfor each of the world’s maritimenations. These include EEZ area,the percentage of the world’scoral reefs and primaryproduction, time series offisheries landings, fisheriesvalues and species lists. Otherinformation includes the marineprotected area in each country’sEEZ, time series of the MarineTrophic index, allowing testingfor the occurrence of ‘fishingdown’, of the primary productionrequired to sustain the fisheriescatches in that EEZ, etc.  As awhole, this information providesa standardized, freely-accessibledatabase that can be used inglobal analyses of the scope andimpact of the world’s marinefisheries.On the other hand, the websitecontains little on the governanceof fisheries, although theexistence and effectiveness offisheries governance systems iscentral to successfulmanagement and provides theimportant link betweenscientific advice and action. Untilnow, only a lists of treaties andconventions to which eachcountry is party, as well as detailsof international fishing accessagreements, were available.Thus, as a first step to expandingour coverage of governanceissues, a new page was added toour website, labeled ‘Countryprofile’, which identify, for eachof 144 countries (or territories),the government agenciesresponsible for marine fisheriesand protection of the marineenvironment, as well as therelevant legislation. The Countryprofile also lists local andinternational NGOs covering themarine environment andfisheries issues, so far they couldbe identified. In addition to thefull names of the institutionsidentified, web links are given(so far available), thus enablingrapid access to more details.The 28 other islands/territorieswith distinct EEZ and ruled byforeign governments, but withenough local autonomy tomanage their natural resources,were treated as separate‘countries’.  Also, for countrieswith coasts spanning severalregional management areas, weprovided links to authorities atsub-national (State, Province)level. In countries where morethan two ministries or agenciesare responsible for protection ofthe marine environment, weattempted to identify theauthority with the mostresponsibility.  Similarly, in caseof information on maritime lawsand fisheries regulations,adapted from the FAO, UN andthe IUCN databases, we selectedonly what appeared to be majorpieces of legislation.Overall, the amount of contentgiven on management agencies’websites varied, with developedcountries providing moredetailed information, coveringlonger periods, and with moreregular updates than developingcountries.In its present version, the‘Country profile’ pages also allowaccess (for many countries) tomore detailed accounts ofcountries’ fisheries and theirgovernance, i.e., ‘FAO profiles’,brief portraits and sets ofsummary statistics compiled byFAO staff, and ‘Code of conductprofiles’, detailed evaluations ofthe countries’ compliance withArticle 7 (‘FisheriesManagement’), of the FAO Codeof Conduct for ResponsibleFisheries, published in 1995. Thelatter profiles are the result ofwork by Prof. Tony Pitcher, thisnote’s first author, DanielaKalikoski, Marcello Vasconcellos,Patricia Rojo-Diaz and others.Evaluations have beencompleted for 53 countries(strictly, marine fisheriesjurisdictions representing 96% ofthe reported world fish catch)and form the basis of a soon-to-be released Fisheries CentreResearch Report.Although it is difficult to ensurethe accuracy, pertinence andtimeliness of information such asgiven in our ‘Country profiles’and ‘Code of conduct profiles’pages, we will attempt to do so,and readers are welcome to givethe first author(pramod@fisheries.ubc.ca) orthe Sea Around Us project(office@fisheries.ubc.ca)feedback that wouldcontribute to improve thisproduct.[...] theexistenceandeffectivenessof fisheriesgovernancesystems iscentral tosuccessfulmanagement

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