World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 


Illegal tuna fishing crackdown in Pacific can save $1billion


Illegal tuna fishing crackdown in Pacific can save $1billion

For immediate release, 11 December 2012

A new data-driven process to further crackdown on illegal tuna fishing in the Pacific will help reduce the loss of local fish industry earnings by up to $1billion.

A recent two-week surveillance operation to detect illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing activities in the region has confirmed how necessary data collection is to deter and eliminate fish plundering from the world’s biggest and most important tuna fishery.

More than 320 vessels were sighted, 206 were boarded and 27 infringements were recorded during the operation last month [November].

Kurukuru 2012 was the region’s biggest ever surveillance operation and involved five maritime patrol aircraft, 12 patrol boats, a frigate and a Coast Guard boat all surveying an area of approximately 30 million square kilometres.

“Controlling illegal fishing in the region is complex,” explains Bryan Scott, Fisheries IUU Liaison Officer for the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC).

“There are multiple organisations and nations in the Pacific that govern the rules that fishers can fish under, depending on when and where they are.

“To cross check and analyse a vessel’s catch history and other information during the time of a single boat boarding is extremely difficult, because it is all paper-based.”

Regional estimates put lost earnings from activities such as under-reporting or misreporting catch sizes at anywhere from the millions to over a billion.

The SPC and the Pacific Islands Forum Fisheries Agency (FFA) are working together to put exact figures on these losses by building a comprehensive data network.

The Kurukuru operation helped inform the early stages of a $10-million European Union-funded project known as DEVFISH2 – the Development of Tuna Fisheries in the Pacific African, Caribbean and Pacific Countries.

The project will be improving information management and data analysis as a means of providing additional deterrence for illegal fishing.

Hugh Walton, FFA policy specialist and team leader for the DEVFISH2 project says the measure of success of these projects is not just about the number of fishing vessels recorded or violations detected.

“There needs to be effective deterrence – proper penalties for deliberate misreporting or underreporting catch sizes, compliance with licence conditions, and the means to enforce license conditions,” says Mr Walton.

“If vessels get away with offenses they will continue to offend. But if they, for example, lose their licence or fishing right, the example will ripple out to other operators.

“Being able to compare data sets will allow us to do more reliable estimates of the extent of underreporting and misreporting.”

The SPC and FFA aim to have the improved information management and data screening systems in place over the next 12 months.

The future database management system will help authorities quickly and accurately identify inconsistencies between fishing vessel log books and data captured from surveillance through the Vessel Monitoring System and the reports of at-sea fisheries observers and in-port monitoring of catch landings.

The Kurukuru 2012 surveillance operation was headquartered in Honiara, Solomon Islands at the FFA Regional Fisheries Surveillance Centre, and data was collected from aerial, ship and electronic surveillance sources.

The 30 million square kilometres surveyed included the Cook Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Nauru, Niue, Palau, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tokelau, Tonga, Tuvalu and Vanuatu. Australia, New Zealand, France and the US also provided surveillance support.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Myanmar Election: UNICEF Urges Prioritisation Of Children

With 99 days to go before Myanmar elections, UNICEF urges candidates make children the clear winner More>>

Liberia Thousands Of Unregistered Children Born During Ebola Crisis

Thousands of unregistered children born in Liberia during Ebola crisis at risk of exploitation – UNICEF More>>

UN Refugee Agency Envoy Angelina Jolie Visits Myanmar

UNHCR Special Envoy Angelina Jolie Pitt (left) in Myitkyina township, Kachin State, Myanmar, meeting with some of the 100,000 displaced people who currently live there. Photo: UNHCR/T.Stoddart More>>

As Health Needs Rise In Somalia, Funding Hits New Low

As health needs rise in Somalia, funding hits new low, cutting off 1.5 million from care – UN More>>

Need To End Violence Against Children In Conflict

‘We should be outraged’ more not being done to end violence against children in conflict – UNICEF chief More>>

On Mandela Day, UN Joins Call To Promote Community Service

Nelson Mandela, then Deputy President of the African National Congress of South Africa, raises his fist in the air while addressing the Special Committee Against Apartheid in the General Assembly Hall. UN Photo/P. Sudhakaran More>>

Some $3.2 Billion Needed For Ebola Recovery Efforts

Some $3.2 billion needed for Ebola recovery efforts in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone – UN More>>

World Day: UN Spotlights Plight Of Vulnerable Populalations

Syrian refugees fleeing the fighting near the Syrian city of Kobani wait in a holding area before boarding buses in Turkey (September 2014). Photo: UNHCR /I. Prickett More>>

Afghanisatan: Direct Talks Between Government And Taliban

The United Nations Security Council has welcomed the recently held direct talks between Afghan Government and Taliban representatives as a step towards “peace and reconciliation” in the region. More>>

Eradicating World Hunger By 2030

Agriculture workers collect carrots on a farm in Chimaltenango, Guatemala. Photo: World Bank/Maria Fleischmann More>>

Bangladesh: Flood Leads To UN Agency Providing Food Relief

Anwar Hossain unloads cartons of High Energy Biscuits from a pickup truck and transfers them to a distribution center in Kawar Khop union, Ramu upazila, Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh. Photo: WFP/Kamrul Mithon More>>

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
World
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news